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Weekend At The Movies: Django’s Controversy, Love It Or Hate It?

The new movie, Django, directed by Quentin Tarantino starring Jamie Foxx, Kerry Washington, Leonardo Dicaprio, and Samuel L Jackson is a story about a freed slave turned bounty hunter who then sets out to free his wife from a plantation. The movie has already been considered quite a controversy of 2012, which comes as no surprise because of the director’s reputation for pushing the envelope- but should we love it or hate it? Here are few reasons as to why the movie created such a controversy and some questions you should ask yourself.

 

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Historical Setting

Django is set before the civil war, thus slavery is the essential element for the plot. For many people, slavery is a sensitive historical period where unresolved racial issues continue to linger among society. In the movie Tarantino exposes a perspective of slavery that magnifies the negative treatment among slaves. When will people ever be happy to see one slave spit on another when the issue is still painful to acknowledge? Director Spike Lee called its depiction of slavery, “disrespectful”. However, some people recognize his perspective as something different and innovative where it is to be appreciated for its creativity.

 

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Comedy and Violence

A romantic drama and gruesome comedy all at the same time; this movie illustrates the diversity of elements a story can have without being one dimensional. One scene was passionate, another gory, while another scene was painfully hilarious. The picture below was captured during a scene where the main character, Django, was allowed an opportunity to choose what he wanted to wear for bounty hunting. Django chooses something so obviously ridiculous which was hilarious, but the irony was that in the same outfit Django killed two people, whipping one prior to their death. Some people find it entertaining while others feel it has no moral relevance, additionally slavery nor murder is a laughing matter. Are these people just too sensitive? Can’t violence and comedy be used to expose the truth of history?

 

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Chained or Unchained?

The character Django was perceived as a super hero in this movie; a black man killing white slave owners. This definitely identifies an obvious difference between the antagonist and protagonist, but was this super hero chained or unchained? Often times in movies, racial issues intensify when it isn’t clear who is helping who and for what reasons. Django became a freed slave turned bounty hunter only with the help of Dr. Schultz played by Christopher Waltz who wanted money and criminals. Is it safe to say that this hero was indeed chained during this movie because his authority was only allowed after the saving grace of a white man?

 

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The Use of the ‘N-Word’

Along with the controversy of the movie, there should be no surprise that Tarantino exposed such enormous use of the N-word due to usage in his movies prior to this one. As this was highly criticized, apparently the relevance doesn’t excuse the use for many people. Should slander be allowed in any Hollywood movies? In an interview with MTV and Trantino, his side of the argument is summarized in one word: History. Check it out here.

 

Whether you loved the movie or not, this is definitely a must-see. So check it out, consider these questions and decide for yourself. Let us know your thoughts on this controversial film below…

 

Comments

2 Responses to “Weekend At The Movies: Django’s Controversy, Love It Or Hate It?”

  1. I saw this movie last night. I don’t think the n-word was overused. The movie takes place in 1858. However, I was not a fan. After seeing the film, to me it was not a “must see.” The movie is extremely long, Kerry Washington’s role was more limited than the way it was advertised and the gruesome scenes were a little too much. maybe I’m not a fan of Tarantino’s style.

  2. Bree Nelson says:

    Saw it. Loved it. Worthy of all controversy? Nope. There were scenes that were hard to watch, but have you seen other Tarantino films? It is what it is. And the overuse of the n-word seemed to come mostly from Sam Jackson (I’m exaggerating, but still).
    It was a bit long, though. My butt was numb by the end.

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