I love movies. When I really love a movie, I feel so much. I want to explore that feeling. I watch the film over and over, making mental notes about everything--the camera movement, the story, the character quirks and dialogue. I want the feeling to last. I want to be immersed in it. That is my main goal, when writing and making films--to make you feel. This scene, where Jim Croce's "I've Got a Name" plays and we see the burgeoning friendship between Dr. Schultz and Django is one of those things that is continually crushing me with emotion. I think this is the most important part of this film. Tarantino used the classic Joseph Campbell's Hero's Journey, with Dr. Schultz as the mentor helping Django the protagonist cross the threshold where he learns all the things he will need when Schultz leaves and he gets what he desires. I think that also adds to some of the criticism of the racial implications of the film, because although Tarantino was working within the genre of a Spaghetti Western and the Hero's Journey, the Hero's Journey is a slave gaining his freedom which is an incredibly politicized, horrific and also relevant part of history that still correlates to current issues of race. Having THAT be the hero's journey in a genre film makes it all so complex and so controversial. I also know I'm watching it through a "white lens" and I wonder if that's also why I relate so much to Dr. Schultz's character--I would want to be him, if I had lived back then. I want to be him now.
The story really is incredible--the story within the story--the German legend IS the story. In these scenes, we see Dr. Schultz, as the mentor, as the gentle, open-minded man, who looks like a proud father at Django in his new clothes, and Jamie Foxx with such incredible control and subtlety--that tiny nod back in recognition--so much pride--watch that nod again. Body language can say so much. Then the friendship. And in these scenes, we see what the future could be for Django, with a "European" perspective, in a future that is already being lived out elsewhere in the world--an idea that's reinforced later when Dr. Schultz tells Candie that Alexandre Dumas, author of The Three Musketeers, is black. These scenes are the calm before the storm. Django is like Luke Skywalker with Obi-Wan--both Obi-Wan and Schultz die for what they believe in and leave their mentees with the skills they taught them. It's the bromance moment I am a sucker for. I love the song. I love movies. I love Tarantino's love of movies.
News from the Captain's Quarters.