Leave it to Quentin Tarantino to make a film about slavery featuring a badass slave and some comedic moments. But from the looks of the latest rendition of the movie trailer, that’s exactly what he does in “Django Unchained.”
Scheduled to open on Christmas Day, the film has a star-studded line-up that would have made Alex Haley green with envy. Jamie Foxx plays the title roll, Samuel L. Jackson plays a owner-loving lackey; and Leonardo DiCaprio plays a, needless to say, evil slave owner. Kerry Washington, who is currently sizzling on the small screen as Olivia Pope in “Scandal”, also stars in the film as the wife of Django who has been stolen from him and he aims to get back.
In this second version of the trailer, there’s more of Jackson and some humor played out by Jonah Hill, who was absent in the first iteration. It’s Hill who offers the comedic moment when he and a group of pre-KKK marauders knows as The Regulators are about to set out on a hunt for Django, who is a free slave turned bounty hunter.
“Anyone bring any extra bags?” Hill asks a crowd of his masked fellow riders. Apparently, Hill didn’t quite get the eye-holes cut out right in the one that he brought.
As the story goes, Jamie Foxx, with the help of his bounty hunting mentor Dr. King Schultz (Christopher Waltz), sets out to rescue his wife from DiCaprio’s character the brutal slave owner Calvin Candie. In his way are The Roughriders not to mention the machinations of the entire institution of human bondage which spits out characters like the one Jackson plays–Stephen, a slave who is at times as ill-intentioned against his own as his master.
Despite the laughs and the sexy gun slinging, Tarantino does offer some symbolic imagery that scratches the scab of slavery. The trailer shows one particularly symbolic moment when Foxx takes out a victim and sends blood splattering over unplucked cotton plants. John Singleton’s “Rosewood” and Steven Spielberg “Amistad” both aimed to show slaves in a dignified and heroic light, but Tarantino may have found just the right balance of sentiment, sass, and yeah, payback.