July 9, 2012
Django Unchained, or, Why does Quentin Tarantino give us funny feelings?

Justin: What has Quentin Tarantino collectively done to our brains that makes it damn near impossible to not like what he does, at least on some level. Because there’s a lot to like about Django Unchained from this trailer, but there’s also a lot going on that just feels, well, it gives me a slight case of the Wiggins.

Dennis: I think I’m onto your mind grapes there. The thing that makes Quentin Quentin is the fact that he’s the movie geek of all movie geeks, mining the darkest, most obscure corners of movieland for ideas and then reinventing them with a virtuosic gift for dialogue and fiendishly clever plot-twistery. Whether it’s the heist film (Reservoir Dogs), blaxploitation (Jackie Brown), or pulp fiction or grindhouse (well, Pulp Fiction and Grindhouse), QT’s cinematic alchemy creates some peerlessly exhilarating movies. Some of the best I’ve ever seen, in fact. But in his last film, Inglorious Basterds, I found myself getting a little…something. (Sorry if all this technical jargon is too inside.) An arse-kicking exercise in Nazi-scalpin’ wish fulfillment, Basterds, packed as it is with the requisite virtuoso setpieces (the ones in the farmhouse and the basement bar are as good as anything he’s ever done), has a certain queasy…something underlying everything. You know what I’m getting at?

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