Django Unchained – 2012


The Message

The deeper meaning of the film is sometimes misinterpreted with the idea that the film denies the integrity of what happened in the past. For instance, making it seem unrealistic that there was no actual hero in the past that would rescue their wife. But perhaps there was once a hero but the story was never told, instead of regarding it as a fairytale movie of a black man in a cowboy attire. (Reed, 2013).

  • The Truth

Perhaps Tarantino’s main message was to appeal to the present, and not just what had happened in the past. The blacks were at the bottom in regards of equality and social order and are still at the bottom even today. He shows an emphasis on things that had happened years ago are still present and people are living in a cycle of humanity.

This film is about racism with the support of slavery during the pre-Civil War in America. It is an historical fantasy of postmodernism revealing Blaxploitation in western genre. Not leaving out the obvious scenes of violence, brutality and inhumanity.

The great amount of violence used in the film is questioned as is it really necessary to reveal this to current viewers that already know the history of the slaves. Which comes down to showing the audience how brutalized the slaves were carried out and people can relate more or sympathise when it is visualised rather than read or spoken from word of mouth. The audience can experience it for themselves.

There is also a question towards the use of language. Tarantino makes use of the n-word ‘nigger’ in his films. Some critics such as Spike Lee, perceive Tarantino as a racist as how he structures his characters. The question of, if the n-word was not used, is it possible that Django Unchained would have lost its actual meaning that Tarantino is trying to send to the audience. However the most unique question to ask is why does a film such as this exist? Why is there a lot of controversial and hype around this kind of film?

The answers to the above questions can be answered: the reason why there are constant debates and questions surrounding a film like this is because people have been and still are living in a racist society. Racism has been an ongoing battle for many decades and it continues to drag along in the mud. It is not only an ‘American’ racial issue but a worldwide racial issue (Reed, 2013).

  • Racism

Looking closely at the whites in this film, there is a scene in which an offensive slave owner, Calvin Candie, offers his guests dessert; a slice of ‘white cake’ with the notion that he only prefers white cake and only associates himself with white people. In this scene, Candie is surrounded by white women, eating white cake and has a white house which becomes a mask of who he is, a white racist.

At the end of the film, Django makes it clear to get rid of every white slaver and destroys Candie’s perfect white house. The explosion of the white house indicates the rage and loss of the slaves and black people that revenge is paid back to those that overruled them and took advantage. The whole slavery system is bound to come crumbling down. Although, it is not over entirely for black people and other races that are oppressed but an individual or group of activists always seem to step up and fight the battle of racism (Reed, 2013).


*Reed, A. Jr. (2013). Django Unchained, or, The Help: How “Cultural Politics” Is Worse Than No Politics at All, and Why? Available: http://nonsite.org/feature/django-unchained-or-the-help-how-cultural-politics-is-worse-than-no-politics-at-all-and-why


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s