The Big Picture: Is Django Racist?

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Daaaah Whoosh:

daibakuha:

You've gone from full blown racism to even further down the line to borderline idiocy.

Not to even mention your rambling incoherent mess of a post was not only mind-numbingly flat, but incredibly hard to read due the lack of anything resembling proper grammar and syntax.

You also completely miss the context the movie gives for Django's actions and the fact that one of the primary protagonists is a white European dude, who, at least in the beginning, hates slavery more than Django does(or is at least more accepting of it). You would know this if you actually saw the film, instead of trying to make up and justify reasons to hate it.

I can see I am not getting my point across. This is the last time I will try.

I do not believe I have been racist. I believe I have been politically incorrect, perhaps, but as I believe was my original point, it's hard not to appear racist when talking about a movie about slavery.

It does not matter that Django is black. What matters is that he murders a lot of people and gets away with it. He doesn't become a tragic martyr; rather, he becomes a comic hero.

I am sorry that my post was flat, I'm not used to the forum taking spaces between paragraphs. I am trying to use them now.

I am sorry that you could not understand my grammar and syntax. I have been reading Jacobean poetry lately, I find it has an adverse effect on my writing.

I don't understand what your third paragraph is even trying to say. The German DID die for what he believed, he DID sacrifice himself for his ideals, and his plan DID NOT involve murdering two dozen men, until he was pushed to the breaking point. Remember how Django got his wife back, then proceeded to wait for the rest of the plantation to return from the funeral so that he could shoot them all down in cold blood? That's called premeditated murder. He'd gotten what he wanted, he just had to go back to cause more death. Which is fine, they mostly deserved it, but Django should not have survived unharmed from the event.

I hope that proved to you that I did see the film. I don't know what more I can say.

I don't really see the point in objecting to Django killing people in cold blood a lot of action movies do the same for their heroes and don't get any slack for it. Not to mention the fact that he only really kills 2, maybe 3 people in cold blood, and that was only after they tried to kill him first. Not to mention the fact that if he didn't kill those people they would have hunted him down like an animal and probably have dogs tear him limb from limb. You also falsely state that he killed the entire plantation when he only killed three people, and their were only 5 of them to begin with (the other two were slaves he let go). He killed Candie's sister, Sam Jackson and the white moonlit walk guy.

Even-so what the law considers legal and illegal are not always the same thing as moral and immoral. Slavery was legal during a good portion of our nation's history. Even after lawful segregation basically made blacks second class citizens not guaranteed to the same rights and privileges as whites.

And I would hardly say that either him or his wife emerged from the ordeal unscathed. Django lost a close friend, and his wife was forced to have sex with people at Calvin's will. You could even take it further and say that the horrors inflicted on both of them while they were slaves was enough sacrifice.

And what you said originally was racist. You said that you were worried that young black stupid people would use this movie to justify violence against whites. You then clarified and said that you weren't just concerned about black people. Despite the fact that fictionalized violence in any medium does not inspire real life violence(and in any race, your original post stated you were afraid black people were too stupid to know the difference).

Nieroshai:

Nautical Honors Society:
Short answer, no. Long answer no it is not racist.

Even longer answer: Jamie Foxx said his favorite part about the movie was getting to shoot white people. That line makes it into the movie, but he said it before the script did.

I was waiting for someone to point this quote out. Explain how someone's "favorite part about the movie was getting to shoot {skin color} people" is NOT racist, please.

Nothing racist about pompous white people over-ruling black people on why they shouldn't be upset, and what does and doesn't amount to racism. Good shit, Movie Bob!

(I haven't seen the movie, so I can't actually make any comment on whether it actually does things that reconcile affected audiences, or is just an OTT 'righteous' movie that really just indulges in the narcissism of white guilt; but that would be an important issue to weigh in the subject)

daibakuha:

I don't really see the point in objecting to Django killing people in cold blood a lot of action movies do the same for their heroes and don't get any slack for it. Not to mention the fact that he only really kills 2, maybe 3 people in cold blood, and that was only after they tried to kill him first. Not to mention the fact that if he didn't kill those people they would have hunted him down like an animal and probably have dogs tear him limb from limb. You also falsely state that he killed the entire plantation when he only killed three people, and their were only 5 of them to begin with (the other two were slaves he let go). He killed Candie's sister, Sam Jackson and the white moonlit walk guy.

Even-so what the law considers legal and illegal are not always the same thing as moral and immoral. Slavery was legal during a good portion of our nation's history. Even after lawful segregation basically made blacks second class citizens not guaranteed to the same rights and privileges as whites.

And I would hardly say that either him or his wife emerged from the ordeal unscathed. Django lost a close friend, and his wife was forced to have sex with people at Calvin's will. You could even take it further and say that the horrors inflicted on both of them while they were slaves was enough sacrifice.

And what you said originally was racist. You said that you were worried that young black stupid people would use this movie to justify violence against whites. You then clarified and said that you weren't just concerned about black people. Despite the fact that fictionalized violence in any medium does not inspire real life violence(and in any race, your original post stated you were afraid black people were too stupid to know the difference).

He kills all the white people who work at the plantation. First when they're attacking him, second when they're sitting around minding their own business, presumably so they won't attack him again.

I see your point about slavery being martyrdom enough. Also, I had not thought about how they would have been hunted down. Although I hardly see how killing a dozen more white men is going to solve that problem.

And when I said 'young black stupid people', I suppose I should have said "young stupid people who just so happen to be black". One of the many downsides of racism is that you can't put any negative adjectives next to racial adjectives without everyone thinking you're applying the former to the entirety of the latter.

As for fictionalized violence not inspiring real violence, perhaps you're right. But what about HISTORICALLY fictionalized violence? Violence based around things that ACTUALLY HAPPENED? I find that to be far more inspirational.

Daaaah Whoosh:

Lionsfan:

It's not a "perhaps this is racist." What you've said is racist. Simply adding something about how white people might think it's ok to shoot black people doesn't change the fact that your original post you said, "I am a bit worried that some black people may walk away from Django thinking that it's a good idea to murder white people and blow up their houses, because then you'll get a wife and some fancy clothes, and overall a pretty happy ending."

That's the kind of shit that pops up on Cable News, or some white supremacist site.

You didn't talk about vengeance movies in general and their effect on society, or anything like that. Your first post was about how some black people specifically might not be able to distinguish fact from reality. And in a thread chock full of semi-racist posts and very idiotic posts, yours is near the top of the list

I just assumed that I wouldn't have to say anything about all the revenge movies that I think inspire people of other races to commit acts of genocide. I didn't think people would be racist enough to assume I think black people are inferior; I do not. I'm simply stating that since this is a movie based upon race relations, and it involves a black protagonist killing white people, I was worried about similar things happening in real life. I assumed that everyone is at least smart enough to know that movies about killing people don't tell them to also kill people unless they have some things in common with the protagonist. Since racism is still prevalent in America, and since black people are most often the ones who are on the worse side of it, I thought that many victims of modern-day racism would turn to violent means of vengeance, rather than more peaceful ones. I'm sorry if people like to jump to racist conclusions, I thought my line of reasoning was apparent.

So I assume you'll be posting the whole "violence inspires people" thing on every violent film talked about on the Escapist, and the revenge videos as well?

Even with that line of reasoning, your first two posts were still highly racist, and you're still posting thoughts that are pretty horrible. This whole thought:

Since racism is still prevalent in America, and since black people are most often the ones who are on the worse side of it, I thought that many victims of modern-day racism would turn to violent means of vengeance, rather than more peaceful ones

is just, gah, stupid and bad. You're saying that black people can't handle a movie without trying to imitate it, something that has never happened before, because SURPRISE! Black people, even those suffering through modern-racism, are not boiling pots of hatred waiting for an excuse to start killing people

Mordaris:

Nieroshai:

Nautical Honors Society:
Short answer, no. Long answer no it is not racist.

Even longer answer: Jamie Foxx said his favorite part about the movie was getting to shoot white people. That line makes it into the movie, but he said it before the script did.

I was waiting for someone to point this quote out. Explain how someone's "favorite part about the movie was getting to shoot {skin color} people" is NOT racist, please.

It's called black comedy. He said it on a fucking Saturday Night Live sketch. Now if it were reversed, would it be seen as racist? Yes, absolutely. Would it -actually- be racist? Doubt it. Racism requires intent in my book. Words cannot be inherently racist, although people seem to think they are considering the ridiculous temerity people demonstrate when trying to talk about the word Nigger.

To all the commentators; Wow. Nice to see alot of you giving the subject much thought. It's a subject for debate, but the subject itself brings forth even more debate.

In regards to Bob: Pretty accurate analysis of the movie. The movie itself isn't racist. It doesn't glorify whites nor blacks, but it does have racism. The racist beliefs of the characters influences their behavior. Calvin and his skull bit, and D'Jango in his treatment of the slavers and slave owners. Racism is two-way street. Can't say much that hasn't already been said. I'll let the smarter people finish their bit.

But I do feel the need to look at the comment of "Killing in cold blood." I think the poster was saying that killing of the other people was unwarranted or unnecessary. At first glance it's true. But those men (plus 1 woman) he shot down were all members of the Candie Land estate. Just running away after getting his wife and they would hunt him down. More so they're the same folk that took glee in killing the d'Artagnan. They weren't innocent and kindly folk minding their own buisness. D'Jango went as far to shout that slaves name right before mowing them down. A movie about revenge killing and he kills for revenge. So there were two reason for killing them. Now for the sister, you may think the same. But just because she didn't crack the whip or release the dogs, she enjoyed the luxury of the plantation. Either she took a blind eye to it, or she just didn't care. In both cases she's like the getaway driver for a bank robbery. Sure she didn't rob the bank, but she was part of the gang in that sense. It's the same as the wife of the thief buying herself a new coat with the ill gotten funds. No one was clean, not even D'Jango himself. Killing in itself can be deemed an evil act. Yet it's acceptable when you dislike the one being killed? It's all fuzzy. In any case, it's a great movie since it gets so many people to talk in general.

Well I kinda doubt it's racist but the problem is everyone have their own view on things (and of course by that sometimes wrong ;-) )

So is it okay to make a "fun" movie about a serious subject? anyone not agreeing with a big "Yes" have been somehow traumatized/taught etc that said subject is "to serious"... otherwise we could have a look at WW2 how often hasn't that particular event been ridiculed etc...

And by the way is it only me that find it interesting that in 99/100 times it white people that are racists... oh well xenophobia is kinda odd at times... and I love media that throws "this/that is sooooo racist".....

Oh well my fever/energy less brain found this episode worthy of my time :-)

Khanht Cope:
Nothing racist about pompous white people over-ruling black people on why they shouldn't be upset, and what does and doesn't amount to racism. Good shit, Movie Bob!

(I haven't seen the movie, so I can't actually make any comment on whether it actually does things that reconcile affected audiences, or is just an OTT 'righteous' movie that really just indulges in the narcissism of white guilt; but that would be an important issue to weigh in the subject)

I don't want to be too harsh, but I have to say I'm not impressed with the conversation that's taking place. It goes something like.

Black person: This film is kind of problematic.

White person: How?

Black person: Well, there are several isolated things that come off as racist and it makes me feel uncomfortable.

White person: Well, as a whole the movie is clearly against racism, so there. Conversation over.

Tarantino seems happy with the reaction and in a way I think he should be. I've seen some terrific articles on Django U and I've learnt a thing or two from those articles. On the other hand, white people and especifically white critics are dismissing all this and seem much more interested in preserving Tarantino's honor. Having said that, there are white critics tearing the film down but they are the most racist of the bunch. So overall, disappointed.

Anyone seen Black Dynamite? I love that movie but somehow doubt Spike Lee's seen it.
Maybe he should Do the Right Thing© and see the movie.

OT: Not seen it yet but doubt it'll be that bad in all honesty.

Lionsfan:

is just, gah, stupid and bad. You're saying that black people can't handle a movie without trying to imitate it, something that has never happened before, because SURPRISE! Black people, even those suffering through modern-racism, are not boiling pots of hatred waiting for an excuse to start killing people

I just assumed since there's been a lot of white people inspired to acts of violence recently, the same is possible for black people. I'm not saying the average black man or woman off the street is going to think these things, that WOULD be racist. I just feel that in regard to the whole conflict of American race relations, the last thing we need is a hero who gets what he wants by killing people.

This video could use a more ironic title. How about "Breaking the Chains"?

Racist is kind of too vague. Is the movie hateful or intending to give offense? Nah, not really. Is it disrespectful? Eh..... The use of the N word goes from shocking to grating to immature to, frankly, desensitizing. And it may be putting the cart before the horse to do "The great hero! But black!" and "See how a man can be warped by a cruel and amoral environment" all at once. It muddies the message a little. It was less difficult in Basterds because there had already been a lot of stories of WWII with Jewish heroes and they didn't have to be archetypes.

On the other hand, if Django is supposed to be an archetypal hero it makes his semi-corruption and the delight in killing a lot of people a little creepy. Also, there seemed to be some indecision over which hero. First he's the tortured, damaged soul seeking revenge, then the stalwart warrior, then the crafty underdog. That's actually a totally fine and cool character arc, but it gets crowded out by the big ideas and mythic quests. That muddling certainly has it's own effect, and that effect is clever (Yay, hero guy's gonna save the day....by killing a whole lot of people and being either totally blase or thrilled....but I can't feel bad for them they were terrible people), but it's also distracting and the emotional tug-of-war just eventually led me to stop even trying to make any sense of it. Plus, the moral tug-of-war is a bit too realistic for the larger-than-life characters.

TL,DR: Tarantino IS immature and undisciplined. That's always been my beef with him. It's unsurprising that when he tackles something that has this much emotional weight for this many people he's gonna come off as disrespectful, because I haven't noticed him giving a shit about being respectful about anything ever.

Haven't seen the movie yet, but if Quentin Tarantino handled slavery in roundabout the same manner as he dealt with Jews, Nazism and WW2 in Inglorious Basterds, then I bet a lot of sacred cows weren't so much slaughtered as ritually dismembered with a blunt object.

Mordaris:

Nieroshai:

Nautical Honors Society:
Short answer, no. Long answer no it is not racist.

Even longer answer: Jamie Foxx said his favorite part about the movie was getting to shoot white people. That line makes it into the movie, but he said it before the script did.

I was waiting for someone to point this quote out. Explain how someone's "favorite part about the movie was getting to shoot {skin color} people" is NOT racist, please.

You obviously have not been around black kids right after the first time they see Roots (bad joke I know). I can tell you how. An actor has to "get into character." He has to feel the person he's playing, understand all aspects of him. That means the absolute powerlessness, the desperation the character feels has to be completely internalized. For all intents and purposes you "are" that person. Juxtapose Foxx as one of the cultural elite now in the role of a man not even counted as a full person. So many indignities and injustices heaped on the character. And now he gets a chance at pay back. Check out what happens with some character actors.

Either Tarantino is trolling, or he's honestly trying to spark a debate. I hate the Trey Stone and Matt Parkers of the world who drop a heavy topic then back away to avoid the flames. He's said he wanted it to be a period film. Fine. Then he says he doesn't want to be held accountable for what it brings up. Fine. Pick one. And btw, the cavalier attitude with the N-word, not cool, never been cool, never will be cool.

That being said it is a brave film. There hasn't really been a film that revels in just how demeaning and dehumanizing chattel slavery was. You could even argue that Christopher Waltz's character arc reflects a modern white dude being exposed to the depths of historical slavery. That it is done through mostly dialogue speaks highly to his prowess as a writer and a director.

I agree here 100%. And I still think Spike Lee needs to sit down somewhere, watch the movie, and shutup about it.

Sylveria:
If the movie was made by a black director and writer, Spike Lee would say it was one of the most poignant movies of our time. If you ask me, the only thing that's racist about this movie.. is Spike Lee.

True.

Spike Lee has a habit of looking for racism that is not there.
Like when Clint Eastwood made a movie about the US Marines on Iwo Jima and Spike Lee tried to call him out for racism for the lack of black people in the movie. The Truth was there was no blacks there as blacks where restricted to supply transport and handling munitions. Yes in World War II the country was credibility racist when when fighting against fascism. But Eastwood want to get the movie as historically accurate as he could (you know for a movie). Spike Lee failed to realize there was a Native American and an Asian involved in the platoon that one that battle. That Spike Lee didn't want to acknowledge there other minorities other than blacks.

The Gentleman:
It sounds like Mr. Lee should speak to Mr. Brooks on how to handle controversial points in world history.

Sadly that would devolve too quickly to the "my people suffered more than yours" argument as sadly Jews and Blacks are known to do way too much.

darksakul:

The Gentleman:
It sounds like Mr. Lee should speak to Mr. Brooks on how to handle controversial points in world history.

Sadly that would devolve too quickly to the "my people suffered more than yours" argument as sadly Jews and Blacks are known to do way too much.

whoosh

imma leave this here

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0082517/

Myrmecodon:

daibakuha:

I don't really see the point in objecting to Django killing people in cold blood a lot of action movies do the same for their heroes and don't get any slack for it. Not to mention the fact that he only really kills 2, maybe 3 people in cold blood, and that was only after they tried to kill him first.

How many action movies has the hero casually shooting the villain's sister when she does nothing on-screen to warrant it?

Not to mention the fact that if he didn't kill those people they would have hunted him down like an animal and probably have dogs tear him limb from limb.

You think that the slaves he let go were immune to bribery from other masters? They're all going to end up at other plantations. The movie was kind of big on emphasizing how important the freedom papers were to ensuring that other slavers wouldn't re-sell him. Matter of fact...

Yes, the movie is racist, and it's racist in the most correct way possible. When Calvin Candie makes his speech about "one nigger in 10,000" actually being independent-minded enough to take freedom's opportunity when it comes, Django merely proves that he's the one. The rest of the slaves? Maybe Samuel L. Jackson is one in 10,000 that decided to seize power instead of freedom, but otherwise every other black character in the movie is passively acted on or heavily encouraged by outside action, rather than shown to be an independent actor taking their actions from reason and personal history. And you know what?

It precisely matches the psychological profiles of the vast majority of black people today. Collect welfare checks when shown how, commit random violence against each other when the feeling strikes you, take affirmative action/government quote and set-aside jobs to create an artificial middle class, vote en masse for the guy who's a half-member of your race despite the fact that his amnesty for illegal immigrants primarily destroys the low-skill high-labor jobs that kept your parents and ancestral communities employed after slavery...

Have you considered the fact that Samuel L. Jackson might not, in fact, have been acting all that hard? That he does, in fact, have some precedent for this role?

Phrenology "skull bumps" as an explanation for the phenomenon might have been pseudoscience, the observations of black passivity, stupidity, and indolence were as real and universal as rain.

What the actual fuck?

Myrmecodon:

daibakuha:

I don't really see the point in objecting to Django killing people in cold blood a lot of action movies do the same for their heroes and don't get any slack for it. Not to mention the fact that he only really kills 2, maybe 3 people in cold blood, and that was only after they tried to kill him first.

How many action movies has the hero casually shooting the villain's sister when she does nothing on-screen to warrant it?

Not to mention the fact that if he didn't kill those people they would have hunted him down like an animal and probably have dogs tear him limb from limb.

You think that the slaves he let go were immune to bribery from other masters? They're all going to end up at other plantations. The movie was kind of big on emphasizing how important the freedom papers were to ensuring that other slavers wouldn't re-sell him. Matter of fact...

Yes, the movie is racist, and it's racist in the most correct way possible. When Calvin Candie makes his speech about "one nigger in 10,000" actually being independent-minded enough to take freedom's opportunity when it comes, Django merely proves that he's the one. The rest of the slaves? Maybe Samuel L. Jackson is one in 10,000 that decided to seize power instead of freedom, but otherwise every other black character in the movie is passively acted on or heavily encouraged by outside action, rather than shown to be an independent actor taking their actions from reason and personal history. And you know what?

It precisely matches the psychological profiles of the vast majority of black people today. Collect welfare checks when shown how, commit random violence against each other when the feeling strikes you, take affirmative action/government quote and set-aside jobs to create an artificial middle class, vote en masse for the guy who's a half-member of your race despite the fact that his amnesty for illegal immigrants primarily destroys the low-skill high-labor jobs that kept your parents and ancestral communities employed after slavery...

Have you considered the fact that Samuel L. Jackson might not, in fact, have been acting all that hard? That he does, in fact, have some precedent for this role?

Phrenology "skull bumps" as an explanation for the phenomenon might have been pseudoscience, the observations of black passivity, stupidity, and indolence were as real and universal as rain.

daibakuha:

Myrmecodon:

daibakuha:

I don't really see the point in objecting to Django killing people in cold blood a lot of action movies do the same for their heroes and don't get any slack for it. Not to mention the fact that he only really kills 2, maybe 3 people in cold blood, and that was only after they tried to kill him first.

How many action movies has the hero casually shooting the villain's sister when she does nothing on-screen to warrant it?

Not to mention the fact that if he didn't kill those people they would have hunted him down like an animal and probably have dogs tear him limb from limb.

You think that the slaves he let go were immune to bribery from other masters? They're all going to end up at other plantations. The movie was kind of big on emphasizing how important the freedom papers were to ensuring that other slavers wouldn't re-sell him. Matter of fact...

Yes, the movie is racist, and it's racist in the most correct way possible. When Calvin Candie makes his speech about "one nigger in 10,000" actually being independent-minded enough to take freedom's opportunity when it comes, Django merely proves that he's the one. The rest of the slaves? Maybe Samuel L. Jackson is one in 10,000 that decided to seize power instead of freedom, but otherwise every other black character in the movie is passively acted on or heavily encouraged by outside action, rather than shown to be an independent actor taking their actions from reason and personal history. And you know what?

It precisely matches the psychological profiles of the vast majority of black people today. Collect welfare checks when shown how, commit random violence against each other when the feeling strikes you, take affirmative action/government quote and set-aside jobs to create an artificial middle class, vote en masse for the guy who's a half-member of your race despite the fact that his amnesty for illegal immigrants primarily destroys the low-skill high-labor jobs that kept your parents and ancestral communities employed after slavery...

Have you considered the fact that Samuel L. Jackson might not, in fact, have been acting all that hard? That he does, in fact, have some precedent for this role?

Phrenology "skull bumps" as an explanation for the phenomenon might have been pseudoscience, the observations of black passivity, stupidity, and indolence were as real and universal as rain.

What the actual fuck?

Myrmecodon:

daibakuha:

I don't really see the point in objecting to Django killing people in cold blood a lot of action movies do the same for their heroes and don't get any slack for it. Not to mention the fact that he only really kills 2, maybe 3 people in cold blood, and that was only after they tried to kill him first.

How many action movies has the hero casually shooting the villain's sister when she does nothing on-screen to warrant it?

Not to mention the fact that if he didn't kill those people they would have hunted him down like an animal and probably have dogs tear him limb from limb.

You think that the slaves he let go were immune to bribery from other masters? They're all going to end up at other plantations. The movie was kind of big on emphasizing how important the freedom papers were to ensuring that other slavers wouldn't re-sell him. Matter of fact...

Yes, the movie is racist, and it's racist in the most correct way possible. When Calvin Candie makes his speech about "one nigger in 10,000" actually being independent-minded enough to take freedom's opportunity when it comes, Django merely proves that he's the one. The rest of the slaves? Maybe Samuel L. Jackson is one in 10,000 that decided to seize power instead of freedom, but otherwise every other black character in the movie is passively acted on or heavily encouraged by outside action, rather than shown to be an independent actor taking their actions from reason and personal history. And you know what?

It precisely matches the psychological profiles of the vast majority of black people today. Collect welfare checks when shown how, commit random violence against each other when the feeling strikes you, take affirmative action/government quote and set-aside jobs to create an artificial middle class, vote en masse for the guy who's a half-member of your race despite the fact that his amnesty for illegal immigrants primarily destroys the low-skill high-labor jobs that kept your parents and ancestral communities employed after slavery...

Have you considered the fact that Samuel L. Jackson might not, in fact, have been acting all that hard? That he does, in fact, have some precedent for this role?

Phrenology "skull bumps" as an explanation for the phenomenon might have been pseudoscience, the observations of black passivity, stupidity, and indolence were as real and universal as rain.

I literally just woke up and this is likely the most offensive and blatantly incorrect thing I'll read all day.

Yeah, we should honor people who were slaves by never touching the subject in movies. Yeah cause that makes any sense. Maybe it's because I don't watch R rated movies much, but I've never seen a movie show slavery so realistically. By which I mean show the brutality, disrespect, and culture around it like Django does.

I consider myself pretty averagely educated about US history. But I didn't know some slaves were forced to fight to the death. Now you can be sure I will never forget.

Making something interesting / engaging / fun is the most effective way of teaching as far as I know, and Django nails that on the head. Like Bob said, it's not looking slavery up in a glass jar, the movie brings you into the reality of the time period. Then goes unrealistic at the end, but I liked that because to me it pointed out how dumb unrealistic westerns are.

feycreature:
Racist is kind of too vague. Is the movie hateful or intending to give offense? Nah, not really. Is it disrespectful? Eh..... The use of the N word goes from shocking to grating to immature to, frankly, desensitizing.

I don't see that (the use of N word) as the movie being disrespectful, but rather as the movie being realistic. The reason it's such an offensive term today is because of the way it was used in the past, and the movie is trying to show that past.

Myrmecodon:

daibakuha:

I don't really see the point in objecting to Django killing people in cold blood a lot of action movies do the same for their heroes and don't get any slack for it. Not to mention the fact that he only really kills 2, maybe 3 people in cold blood, and that was only after they tried to kill him first.

How many action movies has the hero casually shooting the villain's sister when she does nothing on-screen to warrant it?

Not to mention the fact that if he didn't kill those people they would have hunted him down like an animal and probably have dogs tear him limb from limb.

You think that the slaves he let go were immune to bribery from other masters? They're all going to end up at other plantations. The movie was kind of big on emphasizing how important the freedom papers were to ensuring that other slavers wouldn't re-sell him. Matter of fact...

Yes, the movie is racist, and it's racist in the most correct way possible. When Calvin Candie makes his speech about "one nigger in 10,000" actually being independent-minded enough to take freedom's opportunity when it comes, Django merely proves that he's the one. The rest of the slaves? Maybe Samuel L. Jackson is one in 10,000 that decided to seize power instead of freedom, but otherwise every other black character in the movie is passively acted on or heavily encouraged by outside action, rather than shown to be an independent actor taking their actions from reason and personal history. And you know what?

It precisely matches the psychological profiles of the vast majority of black people today. Collect welfare checks when shown how, commit random violence against each other when the feeling strikes you, take affirmative action/government quote and set-aside jobs to create an artificial middle class, vote en masse for the guy who's a half-member of your race despite the fact that his amnesty for illegal immigrants primarily destroys the low-skill high-labor jobs that kept your parents and ancestral communities employed after slavery...

Have you considered the fact that Samuel L. Jackson might not, in fact, have been acting all that hard? That he does, in fact, have some precedent for this role?

Phrenology "skull bumps" as an explanation for the phenomenon might have been pseudoscience, the observations of black passivity, stupidity, and indolence were as real and universal as rain.

Wow... I have no words...

This is the first time I've ever actually seen something so blatantly racist on the Escapist.

Just... wow.

Well, I was going to comment about how in the hands of someone who understands context and subversion, even that touchy period of US history could be used to make an engaging film (Mel Brooks did it with Blazing Saddles).

But I just saw the clouds crack in anticipation of a colossal shitstorm, so Imma just going to sit here with my umbrella, and watch.

demonofsarila:
I consider myself pretty averagely educated about US history. But I didn't know some slaves were forced to fight to the death. Now you can be sure I will never forget.

The reason you didn't know about it was because all current evidence indicates, it never happened. And honestly why would it? For one thing, while slave owner's were deplorable people for engaging in the act of slavery, the vast majority of them weren't sadistic sociopaths. Also from an economic perspective it's even stupider. As much as it churns my stomach to say it, those people were their owner's property and very expensive property at that. Nobody in their right mind would have their slaves killed unless it was necessary, and certainly not for fun.

In short, yes, in long YEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEES. I am getting sick of white people being painted down to be the root of all evil. Why so much attention for something that happened years ago when slavery still happens to this day? Yes, the countries where all your precious shiny iThings come from like China, and the rest of South East Asia. What do you say? they are debt slaves so it's their own fault? Oh sure man, keep telling yourself that while you catapult another ill-tempered bird to ensure the demise of a green hoofed animal. America (and any other modern western country) should stop chastising themselves for a part of history which we current and older generations have no part of. I hear you thinking: 'never again' well, it's not going to happen again any time soon, that I can guarantee. But everyone needs to get of their high horse and start helping other people in the aforementioned countries because dwelling over the past is not good, people should be doing something with it. Yes, I know that life is going to be difficult without your happy meal surprise but hey, sometimes you have to make a sacrifice for the greater cause.

spunkgarglewiwi:
In short, yes, in long YEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEES. I am getting sick of white people being painted down to be the root of all evil. Why so much attention for something that happened years ago when slavery still happens to this day? Yes, the countries where all your precious shiny iThings come from like China, and the rest of South East Asia. What do you say? they are debt slaves so it's their own fault? Oh sure man, keep telling yourself that while you catapult another ill-tempered bird to ensure the demise of a green hoofed animal. America (and any other modern western country) should stop chastising themselves for a part of history which we current and older generations have no part of. I hear you thinking: 'never again' well, it's not going to happen again any time soon, that I can guarantee. But everyone needs to get of their high horse and start helping other people in the aforementioned countries because dwelling over the past is not good, people should be doing something with it. Yes, I know that life is going to be difficult without your happy meal surprise but hey, sometimes you have to make a sacrifice for the greater cause.

So... you're against a movie about American slavery painting the white slavers as fuckers? Nice assumptions by the way. You do realize that, when it comes to slavery, America still doesn't really talk about it? There's a Nazi history museum in Berlin, yet many American history textbooks still only gloss over the subject. If you don't find that horribly offensive, then I just can't help you.

Dr. Witticism:

Unfortunately, if you had continued reading this thread, you would have seen the post where I not only "apologize completely and unequivocally," but even mention how wrong I was and state that I will not go back and edit my previous comment, so that people can see how wrong I was (rather than being dishonest and deleting it) and so it can serve as an example of what not to do. And I explain why I became overzealous.

I believe in admitting when I'm wrong and apologizing for unwarranted criticism. The internet would be a far better, more constructive place if more people would do that.

EDIT: which isn't to say it's your fault for not reading the entire thread. Rather, I'm suggesting that it's unfortunate that my apology came several posts later.

I agree fully with you. I was unfortunately just responding to what I'd read in your first post (I saw no edit of the sort saying you'd retracted your statement.) I wasn't thinking you might respond later realizing a mistake or that someone would defend me.

Just defending myself, but I appreciate the sereneness of your apology. Sorry for being rather harsh in my response, the internet WOULD be a better place if more people could step up as you have.

Seriously I think this is the best Big Picture you've done. What a great philosophical take on a movie.

*golf clap*

JudgeGame:
Tarantino seems happy with the reaction and in a way I think he should be. I've seen some terrific articles on Django U and I've learnt a thing or two from those articles. On the other hand, white people and especifically white critics are dismissing all this and seem much more interested in preserving Tarantino's honor. Having said that, there are white critics tearing the film down but they are the most racist of the bunch. So overall, disappointed.

While I hate to disagree with a Judge, I really feel that your assessment is unnecessarily reductive. By my read, white critics haven't been arguing out of some desire to preserve Tarantino's honour. Certainly, they are defending Tarantino for putting a hell of a lot more thought behind his movie's intents and goals than Spike Lee gives him credit for; however, more often than not, it seems to me that white critics are more concerned with the fact that a) Lee is beaking off about a movie he has admittedly not seen, and b) using the word 'nigger' in a context that's appropriate to the story being told is not indicative of racism.

Frankly, I'm sincerely impressed with the dialogue that this has sparked. It's important that Americans refrain from ...ahem... 'whitewashing' the oft times unsavoury history of the United States. I've been very pleased to see that a modern conversation of the legacy of slavery (and the unfortunate racism that still pervades many corners of the US) can occur while at the same time examining those racist elements and confronting them when they rear their ugly heads (as we've seen in this thread).

I can't speak to the quality of the film itself; I'm sad to say I haven't seen it yet. However, given Lee's justifications for perceiving the film as racist, not to mention the commentary from many on both sides of the debate, I'd have to say that while the resulting conversation is a good one to have, there doesn't appear to be a lot of meat to the "Django Unchained is racist" bar-b-que.

I have never wanted to watch a Spike Lee movie and the ones I have seen are average at best. I think his opinion isn't understandable it is just some 'poor-bugger-me' I need an opinion on this because I'm black nonsense. I guess he is held in regard in the USA and nowhere else.

Bob must be doing the Boston accent deliberately now because I don't recall ever hearing it when his videos first started. I don't know why because it is not a pleasant accent to listen to.

daibakuha:

whoosh

imma leave this here

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0082517/

I am fully aware of films done by Mr Mel Brooks like History of the World Part I or Space Balls where Brooks made fun of race. The huge difference is and reason Brooks does not get (as much) backlash is he starts out making fun of his own people first the Jews. That there almost a dozen Jew jokes are made before Brooks rolls out the Black, Asian, White and what ever else jokes.

Here is a example of Black Joke done by Mel Brooks.
Completely different that Django Unchained Quentin Tarantino (Like Apple to Bananas, forget Oranges), sad part is Spike Lee would still claim it's racist.

Maddhaus:
...a) Lee is beaking off about a movie he has admittedly not seen, and b) using the word 'nigger' in a context that's appropriate to the story being told is not indicative of racism...

The thing is that the language used in the film, as you might have gathered from the trailers, does not coincide with the language used in mid-19th century. As an example, the expression Motherfucker was coined some way into the 20th century and yet is featured quite a lot in Django. Of course people can argue that this is all irrelevant because nigger was used a lot in the time period an it has a deep relation with the culture of slavery but my point is that it was a choice that Tarantino made and it was sometthing we all know is very hurtful. I don't think there is a valid reason for including it in the way Tarantino does, which is basically using it about 100 times. If he was going to use it a few times at key moments, I would have respected his decision more.

And as for Spike Lee's reaction, I don't think he jumped to any conclusions with the film and I think there is already a lot to discuss without having to see the film. For example:

a) The majority of important roles in the film are played by white men.
b) It's a film about black people taking physical revenge on white people. You may have a different opinion, but I think the way black people have dealt with their oppression over the centuries has been incredibly civilized considering, so the allegation that black people want physical revenge is plain offensive to a lot of people who have been fighting against the long-standing accusations from white people that black people are ignorant, violent and spiteful while history proves otherwise.
c) It is an action film (or has been explicitly advertized as one). I don't think it's out of line to say that action films aren't always the appropriate genre to discuss very serious issues like slavery, in the same way that FPSs aren't always the appropriate way to talk about war.
d) It's unambiguously a blaxploitation film. There is a lot of discussion on where blaxploitation fits in the racism picture but over the years people have pointed out that the image blaxploitation paints of african-american communities isn't positive and hasn't helped dismantle any of the stereotypes associated with black people.

I'm not saying I agree with Spike Lee, I just want to let know I respect his reasons for thinking what he thinks. And while as a professional he could be critisized for not even watching something before he makes grand statements about it, I can say the same for a lot of people who would rather point at all the cool stuff Tarantino has done, than actually delve into how we should discuss racism and if Tarantino does talk about racism with the respect it deserves.

In the world we live in, racism is a very tangible reality that permeates all aspects of life. If we aren't willing to start from there and figure out how to get racism out in the open, then we are wasting our time. In all honesty, I think Django is only slightly racist, in the most subtle and innocent of ways possible. But a lot of people won't even consider that to be a possibility.

JudgeGame:

And as for Spike Lee's reaction, I don't think he jumped to any conclusions with the film and I think there is already a lot to discuss without having to see the film. For example:

a) The majority of important roles in the film are played by white men.
b) It's a film about black people taking physical revenge on white people. You may have a different opinion, but I think the way black people have dealt with their oppression over the centuries has been incredibly civilized considering, so the allegation that black people want physical revenge is plain offensive to a lot of people who have been fighting against the long-standing accusations from white people that black people are ignorant, violent and spiteful while history proves otherwise.
c) It is an action film (or has been explicitly advertized as one). I don't think it's out of line to say that action films aren't always the appropriate genre to discuss very serious issues like slavery, in the same way that FPSs aren't always the appropriate way to talk about war.
d) It's unambiguously a blaxploitation film. There is a lot of discussion on where blaxploitation fits in the racism picture but over the years people have pointed out that the image blaxploitation paints of african-american communities isn't positive and hasn't helped dismantle any of the stereotypes associated with black people.

a) The primary cast consists of two white dudes, two black dudes. The only reason why most of the auxiliary cast is white is to fit the period and the location. These 4 people are the only ones in the movie with more than 6 lines of dialog.

b)Django doesn't kill the people in the plantation solely because they are white. He kills them because they are bad people. He's not getting revenge for being a slave, he's getting revenge for what they did to him and his wife. If he was going after then for slavery he would have gone after his previous owner(s).

c) Who are you to say what themes can and can't be discussed in any genre? There are shooters that discuss the nature of war just as much as there are action movies which discuss the nature of humanity and our drive to kill each other.

d) Django isn't a Blaxploitation film, and doesn't try to be either. Django is a western, it fits all the tropes of the genre and none of the ones commonly associated with Blaxploitation.

These are assumptions being made by you that are mostly incorrect, and could have easily been remedied if you had actually gone to see the film, before judging it so harshly.

daibakuha:

a) The primary cast consists of two white dudes, two black dudes. The only reason why most of the auxiliary cast is white is to fit the period and the location. These 4 people are the only ones in the movie with more than 6 lines of dialog.

b)Django doesn't kill the people in the plantation solely because they are white. He kills them because they are bad people. He's not getting revenge for being a slave, he's getting revenge for what they did to him and his wife. If he was going after then for slavery he would have gone after his previous owner(s).

c) Who are you to say what themes can and can't be discussed in any genre? There are shooters that discuss the nature of war just as much as there are action movies which discuss the nature of humanity and our drive to kill each other.

d) Django isn't a Blaxploitation film, and doesn't try to be either. Django is a western, it fits all the tropes of the genre and none of the ones commonly associated with Blaxploitation.

These are assumptions being made by you that are mostly incorrect, and could have easily been remedied if you had actually gone to see the film, before judging it so harshly.

For christ's sake, I'm not saying this is my opinion, I'm just saying this is something that is immediately apparent from the films trailers.

a) The lead characters in the posters, the trailers and the IMDB are Jamie Foxx, Christoph Waltz and Leonardo Dicaprio. All of them middle-aged men, two of them white. The fourth guy I assume is Samuel L. Jackson who as far as I know wasn't even advertised to be in the film, which if nothing else says something about the marketing department. Also, I know for a fact there a lot less lines delivered by black actors than there are from white actors throughout the film.

b) I'm not stupid. I know the bad guys in the film are actually bad guys. This isn't a justification for revenge, especially not lethal revenge. As far as I'm aware, the history of african americans is notably free of revenge killings and some people would rather celebrate that than revise history so they were in fact guilty of those crimes. I think people have every right to be offended by the idea of revenge as a form of redemption.

c) There's only so much you can say about violence with violence. There's even less you can say if the violence in question is glorified violence. I'm not saying action films don't have a right to exist, I'm saying it often isn't the best way to approach a subject that is a lot more complicated than people shooting each other in the face.

d) Tarantino's film roots lie very deep in blaxploitation cinema. It's probably his favorite genre. Absolutely everything he does is affected by this. I also know for a fact I'm not the only person who's picked up on the blaxploitation in Django. As an example, repetitive pointless uses of the word nigger. Tarantino loves the word. He uses it a lot in films. He has been critisized a lot of times for this and asked to stop using it so lightly. He hasn't.

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