Spike Lee is criticizing Quentin Tarantino because of a movie he refuses to see. Another boring non-controversy so typical of American hypocrisy! Oooh…there’s slavery… Ooooh…. there’s the “n word” repeated ad infinitum… Oooh….. you poor tainted soul! QT rubs it in nicely, striking a chord where this self-indulgent nation is still so embarrassed. Slavery is as shameful as the holocaust, but “life is beautiful”; and like Benigni’s opus, Quentin creates a spaghetti western/buddy comedy around the horrors of slavery but where the black guy is the hero. It’s a tale of courage, love and decency.
Everything is clever in this movie. From the unlikely partnership of a slave set free (Django) and a German (Dr. King) as they go about bounty hunting together, to the unlikely loyalty of a despicable plantation owner (Calvin Candie) to his slave Stephen. And the (black) damsel in distress named Broomhilde. Calvin Candie is the dragon, comforts himself with the help, cites “Mandingo” (the black exploitation film from the 70′), worships his white sister and names a slave Dartagnan, like Dumas’, the (black) grandson of a Haitian slave. There’s cruelty, violence and blood galore. But it would not be Tarantino if it hadn’t. If Americans didn’t feel so entitled, it wouldn’t be a slap in their face. But it is. And QT does it with guts, vibrantly, reciting and recycling every movie he has ever seen, and with a kick ass soundtrack. It’s so clever, that he even frees Germans from their embarrassment of being.
Buddies Django and King play out like our childhood heroes Terence Hill and Bud Spencer.