Django Unchained **** ( R) Quentin Tarantino delivers yet another fine mix of mayhem and mirth in this tongue-in-cheek homage to Spaghetti Westerns and Blaxploitation flicks with this romp through our Old West and South of the late 1850s. Christoph Waltz plays an elegant bounty hunter who buys a slave (Jamie Foxx) to help him identify some plantation bosses with prices on their heads, while using assumed names. Villains hiding in plain sight. Foxx turns out to be smarter, tougher, and cooler than anyone expected,leading to more of a partnership and dual- purpose quest. Foxx helps Waltz bag the felons; Waltz helps him find his wife (Kerry Washihngton), who had been sold separately as punishment.
As usual for Tarantino fare, the premise mainly provides a springboard for all kinds of fun. An in-your-face score, legitimized for the genre by a contribution from Ennio Morricone; ultra-hip supporting contributions from Leo DiCaprio and Samuel L. Jackson; one sequence with a gang of masked riders that may be the most hilarious scene of the year.
Those who loved Inglorious Basterds will be thoroughly delighted by this bloody, decidedly non-PC comic adventure. Movie buffs should also watch for a slew of familiar faces in minor roles. Beards and scruffy clothes will add to the challenge. It’ll be like playing Where’s Waldo between the splatters, while enjoying another outrageous mix of blood and belly laughs from the Master. (12/25/12)