Friday, January 11, 2013

"DJANGO UNCHAINED" - The Movie, The Dolls, The Controversy


THE FILM - There has been so much controversy over the Quentin Tarantino film, "Django Unchained!" Surprisingly, majority, if not all, of the ever increasing stir-up is coming from the black community. "Django Unchained" is a Western style flick portraying a newly freed slave Django (Jamie Foxx) who becomes a bounty hunter and basically goes on a legal killing spree of white criminals while searching for his wife who was recently sold to an unknown plantation. I am a huge Quentin Tarantino fan but I did not know Django Unchained was his work. I begrudgingly went to see the film with a group of friends but I entered the theater with the same misconceptions many other blacks have which is: this is a movie about slavery and I have no interest in watching some film person's interpretation of it. I had no idea what I was in for. My liking for the movie was immediate and intense. I soon recognized the classic Tarantino style of the film and after confirming with my friend that he wrote/directed it I knew the man was a genius with balls as big as Texas. Not only does the movie contain all the violent, over the top, pulpy gore that we expect from Tarantino but he offers the black community some retribution for the oppression our ancestors endured by offering this great piece of cinematic art where revenge and vindication are had.

THE CONTROVERSY - I just don't understand it. Spike Lee is adamantly opposed to this "slave" movie, however, he refuses to watch it. What bugs me is that Spike he has a legion of followers who are standing behind his ignorant viewpoint knowing his opinion is not based on any facts but simply whatever his imagination is conjuring up. Spike is known for creating controversy where none exists but at least watch the film first. As much as blacks preach about hating ignorance this pretty much takes the cake for me because his voice is loud and inappropriate. Who I do applaud is Louis Farrakhan for having the decency to watch "Django Unchained" before offering his assessment which was quite fair and accurate. Needless to say, he enjoyed the film. It's one thing for the black community to protest obvious discrimination, hatred, belittlement, etc. but to protest a film with a black protagonist/hero who can ride up to plantations, behave like an asshole then shoot every white person in the place isn't exactly a slight against our ancestors' experience. As a matter of fact, it's not our experience at all! What's more is that many blacks are forgetting that this is a fictional film directed by a man who has a library of similar work (let us not forget Inglourious Basterds). Many are dissecting this film as if it's supposed to be some kind of accurate historical depiction of slavery. Wrong! What's worse is that those doing the over-analyzation haven't watched the film! They simply heard the word "slavery" and "nigger" and went on a ballistic tyrade. Was the word "nigger" used alot? Yes, but you tell me what you think slaves were referred to? Mr. and Ms.? They were property. And to be honest Quentin's overkill and satire made the film extremely funny. And please, don't research mandingo fighting. Quentin read about it in a book and liked it so he incorporated it into his movie.

THE DOLLS - OMG. Wendy Williams talked about them with disgust on her show. Reverend Al Sharpton is boycotting their sale. Friends have facebooked about how indecent it is. So, let's clear the air. Quentin Tarantino makes COLLECTIBLE dolls of characters from ALL his films. The "Django Unchained" dolls are not some novel idea that was birthed with this particular film. They are also not slave dolls. Django was a freeman turned bounty hunter. His wife became free in the movie. By the end of the film both Django and his freed wife ride off in the night amidst a backdrop of a burning plantation then the credits roll. Aside from the Uncle Tom house nigger played by Samuel L. Jackson, there are no slave dolls. And Samuel was excellent in his role, btw. Wendy and others have compared the atrocity of the dolls to Schindler's List dolls had they existed. Please people, get the sand out your panties and walk straight. There is no comparison. If you'd simply shut up and watch the film you'd know that. If you'd simply research Tarantino and his marketing strategies for all his films you'd know that. I was an acquaintance for several years of Leapold Pfefferburg (may he rest in peace) who was a Jewish holocaust survivor and narrated the story of Schindler to the author of the book. Schindler's List was his true life story. I am offended that ANY black person would compare a fictional work of pulp art to his story. I am a 33 year old black woman and am proud of my heritage but the fact that my community can take something like "Django Unchained" and reject it only reinforces why we as a people can never thrive or get ahead.

1 comment:

  1. I just read that and I love it. All of it, agree, agree, agree.