Take a little time to see into the filmmaking and you'll begin to see that Tarantino's exaggerated violence preps his canvas for telling fantastic tales. The heightened violence serving as a tool to remind your subconscious that your watching a movie while you consciously, and eagerly, journey into the screen with Tarantino's amazing characters.
I doubt I could have accepted the extremes of Quentin Tarantino's latest film, Django Unchained, shot any other way. And that thought, I realized, runs back through films like Inglourious Basterds and Kill Bill, all the way to Pulp Fiction.
Tarantino's characters are so deliberate, so unapologetic and written into such extreme situations, that their world must be pushed, like saturating the color palette of film stock, to provide continuity to their story. The blend of putting extreme characters against a background of exaggerated violence acts to create a baseline for the story's reality that seems perfectly natural.
If it's the taught stretching of the background canvas that allows it, it's a masterwork of invention that creates the characters that sell it. Django Unchained is filled, edge to blood splattered edge, with brilliant characters.
|Christoph Waltz as King Shultz and Jamie Foxx as Django|
|Django squares off with|
Leonardo DiCaprio as Calvin Candie
|Samuel L. Jackson as Stephen|
with Kerri Washington as Broomhilda
|Don Johnson as Big Daddy|
It's there in the soundtrack which ranges from spaghetti western homage to hip hop, with Jim Croce's I Got A Name thrown, somehow perfectly, into the mix. It's there too in casting, from a cameo and credited tribute to Franco Nero (the original Django from the 1966 classic spaghetti western), to a virtual parade of wonderful character appearances by the likes of Tom Wopat, Russ and Amber Tamblyn, Bruce Dern, Jonah Hill, Robert Carradine, Ted Neely, Michael Parks and a host of other famous names and faces. You'll have to look close to know they're there, but you only need to watch the movie to appreciate why they're there.
|Quentin Tarantino, in character.|