matts’s review published on Letterboxd:
At this point in time, we'd already know the usual tricks Tarantino has up his sleeve; the disjointed story line, stylistic portrayal of violence, sharp dialogue, strong characters, an ear for spunky music, and the constant use of pastiches. In Django Unchained, QT still operates within his territory, and still offers a great entry from his filmography.
It's fascinating to see QT ditching the nonlinear flow of his story which he's known for, instead, headed for a straightforward conquest of freedom and revenge. Racism and slavery are among the heavy themes the film carries, which the main protagonist Django (Jamie Foxx) has to face and later on succeeds as a free man. It's brutal all throughout like every other QT film, but it most perfectly fits in this narrative.
Christoph Waltz (Dr. King Schultz) and Leonardo DiCaprio (Calvin Candie) delivered stellar performances, with the right amount of Spaghetti Western mojo. It was also nice to see Samuel L. Jackson on the screen. Following the straightforward take on Django Unchained, there are more normal character interactions and dialogue-driven scenes, which is a breath of fresh air. Still, the film is still no stranger to a bloodbath spectacle.
Westerns are not my usual genre of choice but QT revisioned a story good enough to capture my interest and worthwhile in the long run.