When thinking about my favorite movie of all time, Django Unchained popped right into my mind. Released in 2012, this Quentin Tarntaino 100 million dollar masterpiece tells the story of Django, an American slave, and Dr. King Schutlz, a notorious bounty hunter, who partner up as a bounty hunting duo and eventually go on a quest to find and free Djangos enslaved wife Broomhilda von Shaft. They go through several life-threatening situations until they find Broomhildas whereabouts at a huge southern plantation with one of the cruelest slave owners, Calvin Candy. Candy, along with his head black butler Steven, run the planation and are equally as cruel to all the slaves.
This movie is loosely based on real life events of slavery and life back in the middle 1800s. Django is a paradox in which is he the root of anger for the white southerners and the hope for the black slaves who are being tortured and mistreated throughout the film. His partner, Dr. King Schultz, is unlike the white southerners because he finds slavery unjust and does not discriminate based on color. Schultz finds Django with other slaves and two white men taking them to auction to sell. When the two slave owners refused to release Django to Schultz, Schultz shoots the one guy dead and the horse of the other guy so he is trapped underneath the beast. The first sign of the anger Django has towards the owners is when he stepped harder on the beast to make the owner more in pain. The two begin their journey as they start collecting bounties together. During a night conservation, Django relieves to Schultz that he has a wife that he wants to get back. Ironically, Djangos wife Broomhilda has the same name as a character in a German folk tail that Schultz relates to greatly. Schultz then offers to help Django find his wife and give them their freedom in return for helping Schultz make money of the harsh wintertime. Django accepts. After the winter, the two set out to find Broomhilda. From old records, they discover she is at the 4th biggest planation in Mississippi known as Candie Land which is owned by the infamous slave owner Calvin Candie. Candie is the root of all evil in this film with his sociopathic tendencies towards his slaves and his pompous attitude throughout his appearances in the film. One scene in particular that demonstrates his brutality is when a slave of his runs away but is found by his workers in a tree. Candie taunts the slave to the point where Schultz offers to reimbursed Candie for the slave. Django then reaffirms that Schulz doesn't actually want to do that but he is sick of him toying with the slave. As a result, Candie sicks his man-eating dogs on the slaves and he stares intently at Django while the slave is being ripped into pieces. This scene is one of many that showcases the brutality that Candie. After they finally return back the planation, they meet Candies right hand man Steven who is an old man who has been enslaved his entire life and practically brainwashed from the environment. He is cruel and does not like Django from the beginning. Steven eventually knows of Django and Schultz plan to rescue Broomhilda and tells Candie. Candie calls them out and it results in Schultz killing Candie and Schultz dying in the aftermath of it. Django gets enslaved again but soon escapes and finds his wife again. Once him and his wife are together, they kill the remaining people of the planation. Steven is the last to go and dies when Django fills up Candies house with explosives and destroys the whole house. The last scene is Django and Broomhilda riding into the moonlight on a horse.
The release of the film was successful with sales quadrupling the budget for the film and an 88% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Some felt that Tarantinos deception of southern America was racist with the n-word being used over 100 times and the gruesome scenes with killing and torturing. In an interview, Tarantino claims that most people intellectually know the brutality of slavery but wanted the audience to feel it in their bones and I cannot agree more. For face value, you can say that Tarantino is racist but he gets the emotion and the point across of the horrors that occurred in those times. There were many times in the movie I felt anger towards the southerners and felt good when Djangos vindictiveness towards them came out. Tarantinos film certainly helps the viewer feel for the slaves and gives a real meaning to the word brutality when slave treatment comes into play. All in all, this movie will always be one of my favorite.
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