A few months ago we told you about Quentin Tarantino’s upcoming “Black western” Django Unchained, which follows a former slave who sets out to rescue his enslaved wife, Broomhilda.
A few months ago, Tambay of the film blog Shadow & Act read the ‘Django’ script and was shocked that an actress of Washington’s stature would take such a role because of its gratuitous nudity and lack of depth.
Speaking of its blaxploitation influences… regarding the lead female character in this, named Broomhilda, Django’s slave wife, whom he’s separated from, and seeks. She’s the lead female in the film, but her part is limited to really just physicalities. She has the most screen time of any other woman in the film, which is why I call her the lead female character, but, really, there’s no Shosanna in this one, as there was in Inglorious Basterds. The black female “lead” here doesn’t get the same kind of dignified treatment that Tarantino gave Shosanna. Not even close. Yes, I know it’s a different time altogether, but, I’m sure he could have afforded Broomhilda some complexities, and maybe even made her a heroine in her own right.
There are some 4 or 5 scenes in which the she’s, shall we say, “exposed”… i.e. naked; and they felt gratuitous to me; 2 in which she’s raped by white men. When we first meet her, she’s on the auction block and asked to bare her breasts to potential buyers; later, she’s chased through a hotel, through hallways, and lobbies, etc, by a slave master, completely naked, after being woken up from sleep, with a whip across her naked body; and still later, she’s locked up naked in a steel box as punishment for trying to run away.
Well, despite the controversy of this “comedy,” Tarantino has built a respectable cast. Kerry Washington is joined by Jamie Foxx, Samuel L. Jackson, Leonardo DiCaprio, Don Johnson, and Joseph Gordon-Levitt and the film is scheduled to debut at Christmas.
Just want we want during the holidays: A warm and fuzzy, blaxploitation, slavery comedy! Whoopee!