A few things are certain in any Quentin Tarantino movie. There will be violence. At least one memorable scene will stick with you. There are plenty of odd characters. And, you probably haven't seen anything like it before. Tarantino's latest movie had them all.
With great anticipation I recently saw "Django Unchained." I knew I was in for a two hour and 45 minute thrill ride. Loaded up with a large Coke and a big bag of popcorn I sat back with high expectations. It turns out that maybe my expectations were too high.
The opening scenes sucked me in. Tarantino is not a director that will rush a scene or a plot. He lets them play out in due time, usually with great results.
The plot was intriguing. The violence was graphic, and the acting performances were excellent. But between the positives I had some problems with the movie. Tarantino seemed confused about what type of movie he was making. Maybe I am too critical, but why would a period piece set in 1860 have a soundtrack that included Jim Croce's "I Got a Name" complete with the lyrics "rollin me down the highway." Why would a western include a rap song during a tense scene. These may seem like trivial things, but in my opinion it was distracting and took away from the story's authenticity.
"Django" had some moments of humor to ease the tension. One particular scene had me in stitches. I will only compare it to the campfire scene from a certain Mel Brooks movie. Yet at other times the humor seemed misplaced.
Maybe Tarantino drew from too many influences. Was I watching Blazing Saddles, The Wild Bunch, Dirty Harry or Scarface? I would say a little of them all with a few extras thrown in. If that's what Tarantino was trying to achieve, then he did it perfectly.
Some people think "Django" is one of Tarantino's best movies. Was it bad? Absolutely not. Was it one of his best? No, but it could have been great if Tarantino would have been less...well...Tarantino.