Quentin Tarantino, the master of pastiche and “grindhouse” sensation films, has managed a nod as Best Director at the 85th annual Academy Awards, thanks to his direction of recent box office sensation, “Django Unchained”. The veteran director of such popular culture phenomena as “Reservoir Dogs”, “Pulp Fiction”, and “Kill Bill, Volumes I and II”, has once again struck instant pay dirt as the guiding hand behind this latest depiction of controversy regarding 19th century race relations. While a past master of such sensitive subjects, Tarantino has come in for a round of hot and partly unanticipated controversy from the likes of fellow director Spike Lee.
While Lee may believe he has the cinematic depiction of racial genocide and injustice wrapped up under his trademarked domain as “intellectual property”, it was the fast paced, mercurial, Tarantino who managed to score with a sly, savvy, and very hip Spaghetti Western inspired tale of simple retribution. With the much loved comic actor Jamie Foxx in tow, Quentin hit hard and fast with “Django Unchained”, and his legions of adoring fans followed hot on his heels. The film easily broke into the big leagues in record time, garnering Tarantino and co. plenty of box office dollars, as well as an Academy Awards nomination. Spike Lee could only stand on the sidelines in envy.
Of course, “Django Unchained” also features, as all Tarantino box office smashes tend to do, an excellent supporting cast which includes Leonardo DiCaprio, Samuel L. Jackson, Kerry Washington, and Christopher Waltz, among many others. In general, “Django Unchained” received uniformly excellent reviews. Its politically correct and timely message garnered instant sympathetic publicity, which Tarantino rode straight to the bank and cashed. The film itself will likely have an excellent chance of taking top honors in the Best Director category, and will perform well in Blu-Ray and DVD release as a result. Quentin Tarantino has added another triumph to his repertoire.