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He has done that much: a new Tarantino film is something like an event, the hottest thing in town, probably expected more eagerly even than the new Scorsese or the new Spielberg feature. Even though some of these events were dull (yes, I am looking at you, Death Proof), this did nothing to diminish the buzz around the respective next venture. It certainly has to do with the absurdity of the projects when you just look at the plots: avenging sword killer, rogue Nazi hunters, or now slavery abolishers. Not that “Django Unchained” is about abolishing slavery, but close enough with the establishment of Jamie Foxx as – again avenging – gunslinger supporting bounty hunting dentist Christoph Waltz (who plays more like a parody of Christoph Waltz rather than a new character) in his quest for golden coin. They trick rich farmers, they stand motionless in the face of great peril (i.e. whips and guns and sticks of dynamite), and suddenly they form some kind of buddy movie duo, a tradition the rediscovery of which is something Tarantino is good at. Violent as expected, cool as required (not sure: did they wear Ray ban sunglasses at the time?), and long enough to qualify as an effort in epicness. Interesting to me: after “The Searchers” this was only the second “Western” I ever saw that spends considerable time in the snow, a reference or coincidence I immediately liked. As Tarantino films are also something like a vanity card for Hollywood talent, unsurprisingly the majority of actors is terrific, down to mini parts by Boyd Crowder of “Justified” fame, or Jonah Hill in the goofy version of a Ku Klux Klan manhunt, garment challenged.

As ever, Tarantino shows what he’s not very good at: a) editing a film down to its quality core and b) telling himself to stop acting. But maybe that’s part of the fun: the pretentious and obnoxious largess of his films play into his hands, because it adds to the absurdity that is a key element to his success among his fans. He will most likely never be considered a “great filmmaker”, but he has reached the point where to me there is no doubt that  his next film will be great fun to watch again.

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