There are a few people ready to put my #30for30 posts in the same category as unicorns and The Detox: a myth that never manifests.
I promise, it’s coming.
And this ain’t it.
I went to see Django Unchained this week, amid all the controversy, and, after seeing it, I’ve been trying to concisely say why I think it’s silly to boycott the film. I think I finally figured it out.
Every story has a setting, and that setting has an effect on the story, but it very rarely IS the story. To make a movie set during slavery without making use of the word “nigger” would be as inauthentic as pretending that slaves were as happy as they were portrayed to be in “Gone with the Wind.” Yes, the word is offensive, but a movie set in 1850s Mississippi without it has no credibility.
Django was set during slavery. It makes several strong statements about the perpetrators, participants, victims and institution of slavery. But Django isn’t about slavery any more than “The Great Gatsby” is about Prohibition or “Of Mice and Men” is about the Great Depression.
If you walk into the theater expecting a profound tale of woeful slaves and evil white folks, you’ll be slightly disappointed. If you expect a tale about the resilience and integrity of black folks in a time of unimaginable adversity, you’ll be greatly offended.
But if you come expecting a story and its most basic elements—characters, setting, conflict, and resolution—you will be satisfied, and entertained to boot. That’s all a good movie can ever hope to do for its audience.
My two cents.
And don’t worry. I’m in the lab cooking up something hot to kick off 2013. Can’t speak for Dre doe.