Django Unchained is the wildest cinematic ride of the year.
Julian Roman - MovieWeb
Tarantino, with lip-smacking down-and-dirty subversive gusto, rubs our noses in the forbidden spectacle of America's racist ugliness.
Owen Gleiberman - Entertainment Weekly
It is digressive, jokey, giddily brutal and ferociously profane. But it is also a troubling and important movie about slavery and racism.
A.O. Scott - New York Times
By turns dazzling, daring, gruesome and astonishingly funny.
Claudia Puig - USA Today
"Django Unchained" possesses an unmistakable subversive power, its playfully insurrectionist spirit perhaps the modern-day pop-culture equivalent of far more high stakes rebellions of yore.
Ann Hornaday - Washington Post
Corkscrewed, inside-out, upside-down, simultaneously clear-eyed and completely out of its mind.
Wesley Morris - Boston Globe
In his past two movies, Tarantino has ascended to a new level of filmmaking craftsmanship and narrative sophistication.
Scott Foundas - Village Voice
Just when we thought Quentin Tarantino had shown us all the cojones he has, in rides "Django Unchained."
Joe Neumaier - New York Daily News
Wildly extravagant, ferociously violent, ludicrously lurid and outrageously entertaining, yet also, remarkably, very much about the pernicious lunacy of racism and, yes, slavery's singular horrors.
Joe Morgenstern - Wall Street Journal
No movie can match Quentin Tarantino's spaghetti Western/blaxploitation/southern when it comes to illustrating the carnage wrought by slavery.
Chris Vognar - Dallas Morning News
Django Unchained is Tarantino's most complete movie yet. It is also his most vital. His storytelling talents match the heft of the tale.
Lisa Kennedy - Denver Post
Genre-movie-mad writer-director Quentin Tarantino's foray into Western World is a pretty grave disappointment.
Glenn Kenny - MSN Movies
Django Unchained has mislaid its melancholy, and its bitter wit, and become a raucous romp. It is a tribute to the spaghetti Western, cooked al dente, then cooked a while more, and finally sauced to death.
Anthony Lane - New Yorker
By the two-hour mark the fun had oozed out of the movie for me. It's long. Or feels it.
Michael Phillips - Chicago Tribune
Like the earlier movie, in which Jewish-American soldiers assassinate Hitler, this one draws heavily on minority group revenge fantasy, the only difference being that the trick isn't as impressive the second time around.
J. R. Jones - Chicago Reader
It's a live-action, heads-exploding, shoot-'em-up cartoon. Sometimes it crackles, and sometimes it merely cracks.
Steven Rea - Philadelphia Inquirer
[Tarantino] knows how to use our movie-conditioned anticipation against us. Watching his movie is like playing chess with a wiseguy friend who's always four moves ahead.
Colin Covert - Minneapolis Star Tribune
There's plenty of fun here - Waltz alone is worth the price of admission - but you may leave "Django Unchained" wishing for both more and less.
Tom Long - Detroit News
The name of the movie is "Django Unchained," but for all practical purposes it might as well be called "Tarantino Unleashed."
Bill Goodykoontz - Arizona Republic
Bold, original, mesmerizing, stylish and one hell of a piece of entertainment.
Rex Reed - New York Observer
An immensely satisfying taste of antebellum empowerment packaged as spaghetti-Western homage.
Peter Debruge - Variety
"Django Unchained" might have been a revelation in 2005. But after Quentin Tarantino and others have spent years spoofing '60s and '70s genre movies, this mock spaghetti Western tastes like it came out of the microwave.
Kyle Smith - New York Post
Tarantino is clearly having a grand ol' time with Django Unchained, and so are his actors, every one of whom are more than willing to share in the writer/director's filmic vision, no matter how ghastly it may be.
Peter Howell - Toronto Star
a violent, whirling fantasia into our dark past
Jordan Hoffman - Film.com
Tarantino relishes the opportunity to run wild with a symbol of black persecution until the idea loses momentum -- and then, true to form, he just keeps going.
Eric Kohn - indieWIRE
Even the explosive final half-hour, featuring the cartoonish flying bodies and splatterrific payback that are the director's brand, fails to provide the catharsis promised by the title.
Liam Lacey - Globe and Mail
Quentin Tarantino no longer makes movies; he makes trailers.
Andrew O'Hehir - Salon.com
There's something about [Tarantino's] directorial delectation in all these acts of racial violence that left me not just physically but morally queasy.
Dana Stevens - Slate
Tarantino may be the best working director to take scenes of blood, mayhem, and gore and transform them into moments of hilarity.
James Berardinelli - ReelViews
The anecdotal, odyssey-like structure of this long, talky saga could be considered indulgent, but Tarantino injects the weighty material with so many jocular, startling and unexpected touches that it's constantly stimulating.
Todd McCarthy - Hollywood Reporter
''Django Unchained'' is Tarantino at his most puerile and least inventive, the premise offering little more than cold, nasty revenge and barrels of squishing, squirting blood.
David Germain - Associated Press
Django Unchained is pure, if not great, Tarantino.
Richard Corliss - TIME Magazine
Tarantino lives to cross the line. Is Django Unchained too much? ... It wouldn't be Tarantino otherwise.
Peter Travers - Rolling Stone
Tarantino gives us an American Spaghetti Western that's a bloody good time from start to finish.
Richard Roeper - Richard Roeper.com
In "Django," Tarantino is a man unchained, creating his most articulate, intriguing, provoking, appalling, hilarious, exhilarating, scathing and downright entertaining film yet.
Betsy Sharkey - Los Angeles Times
By the end, Django is a hero for his times: the D is silent, but nothing else is.
Jay Stone - Canada.com
Obscurely referential, extremely indulgent, and deliriously over-the-top, Django is -- in other words -- everything you'd expect from a Tarantino joint.
Overlong, self-indulgent garbage with a portrayal of a "house Negro" that is a grotesque distortion of a sad reality.
Louis Proyect - rec.arts.movies.reviews
It is plainly a nonstop riot of humor and excitement, and one that matches its delicate nature with an equally calculated sense of importance in leading us to the most satisfying climax possible.
David Keyes - Cinemaphile.org
If the slightly rambling Django Unchained is 'lesser Tarantino' -- you know, only a B instead of an A -- it's still a heady, delirious good time.
Eric D. Snider
You will definitely get your money's worth. But this is one of Tarantino's minor works.
Will Leitch - Deadspin
Low-level Tarantino inspires exploration, but delivers little more than a blood bath.
Wesley Lovell - Cinema Sight
Django Unchained is 165 minutes and nothing much happens beyond talk and the provision of corpses. The plot lurches around and the artful structure of Pulp Fiction has been abandoned.
David Thomson - The New Republic
The fear, anger and betrayal in Jackson's eyes, when Stephen feels his place is threatened, says more about the cruelties of slavery than the ultra- violent, sickening passages of "Django Unchained."
Carla Meyer - Sacramento Bee
Tarantino slyly takes the dirty diaper that is slavery in America and rubs it in our face.
Al Alexander - The Patriot Ledger
Django may be unchained, but his movie could have used some tighter shackles.
Quentin Tarantino's Django Unchained is a brilliant mixture of over-the-top violence and clever writing, making for the most entertaining film of 2012.
Jeremy Lebens - We Got This Covered
A bloody masterpiece. Funny, Thrilling, cleverly structured.
Marc Fennell - Triple j
It's a testament to Foxx and Washington's talent, presence, and proven rapport that they keep the central emotional hook strongly present as their underwritten roles are continually pushed to the sidelines by Tarantino's overwriting for others.
Michael Dequina - TheMovieReport.com
Countless great scenes in the Tarantino universe
Marty Mapes - Movie Habit
It's exactly what you expect from Tarantino, so if this movie finds itself challenged in any way, it's in being expected.
Dave White - Movies.com
...the time always flies, and Tarantino gives us a lot of movie for our money.
Rob Gonsalves - eFilmCritic.com
Tarantino's take on slavery is wildly creative, funny and frightening, true to form yet never predictable.
Tom Glasson - Concrete Playground
Slavery is to "Django" what the Holocaust was to Tarantino's "Inglourious Basterds" -- a colossal wrong to be righted by a film geek's best weapons: artistry, imagination and wicked humor.
Greg Evans - Bloomberg News
Different setting, same old Tarantino
Robert Denerstein - Movie Habit
Tarantino is, in essence, a classicist who invests the bulk of his drama and tension in lengthy dialogue exchanges that are infinitely more compelling that his elongated sequences of cathartic violence.
Jim Schembri - 3AW
Still wonderfully witty and violent sequences that only Tarantino could manage or dare.
David 'Mad Dog' Bradley - Rip It Up
This bloody, hilarious, shocking, and righteously angry film is the kind of great art and great trash [Tarantino] aspires to make.
Mark Pfeiffer - Reel Times: Reflections on Cinema
...compulsively watchable for the majority of its (admittedly overlong) running time...
David Nusair - Reel Film Reviews
I had a good enough time to wish that it had been better.
Dan Jardine - Cinemania
Part-blaxploitation film, part-spaghetti Western and all-Tarantino, 'Django Unchained' comes charging at its audiences with guns a-blazin'. It's not quite up to par with 'Reservoir Dogs' or 'Pulp Fiction,' but it's still Tarantino - enough said.
Linda Cook - Quad City Times (Davenport, IA)
Overlong, overblown and overly self-indulgent. But excess is what Tarantino does. And just as he won't put one word in his characters' mouths when he can have them utter 10; he won't dispatch a bad guy with one bullet when he can discharge a dozen.
Jason Best - Movie Talk
It would seem that this film's irreverence isn't a case of didn't-try-can't-fail dismissiveness, but rather something more innocuous: it's simply the world interpreted through Tarantino's boisterous perspective.
Adam Ross - The Aristocrat
The funniest western since Blazing Saddles, the bloodiest since The Wild Bunch and the most visually stylish since The Good, The Bad & The Ugly.
Matt Neal - The Standard
Guilty of almost every indulgence [Tarantino] has ever been accused of...but it's hard to hold it against him, when the results are this bloody good
Tom Clift - Moviedex
Ultimately enjoyable, if a little underwhelming, if nothing else we can be grateful to Django Unchained for allowing the phrase "that's the worst thing since Quentin Tarantino's Australian accent".
Josh Forward - Trespass
Impolitic though it might be to suggest it, there's something extremely satisfying about the violence here-though, for my money, it resides less in seeing these racist thugs get their comeuppance, than in the director's staging of it.
Shane Danielsen - sbs.com.au
it's fitting that one of the greatest American filmmakers of all time is using the western and blaxploitation genres to connect the enduring blemish on the American psyche - only to set loose a bad motherf*cker to set it right.
Blake Howard - 2UE That Movie Show
Thrilling, stylish, funny, brutal, superbly-acted, sharply written and wonderfully offensive.
Andy Lea - Daily Star
Django Unchained is a joy. It's fun and foolish, unhinged and unapologetic.
Bill Gibron - PopMatters
Possibly Tarantino's most thoughtful and even political film to date.
Thomas Caldwell - Cinema Autopsy
Tarantino is starting to look more and more like an angry teenager in his bedroom going, "Wouldn't it be good if..."
Erin Free - FILMINK (Australia)
Whereas there was savage beauty and irony in the '60-'70s violence of Penn, Peckinpah, and Leone, the coda of 'Django Unchained' is mere benumbing splatter.
Donald J. Levit - ReelTalk Movie Reviews
It's a big, crazy, hugely entertaining, multilayered piece of filmmaking - a fierce but fiercely intelligent testament to Tarantino's frequently questioned filmmaking proclivities and certainly among the best films he's made.
Alistair Harkness - Scotsman
Trazendo alguns dos melhores momentos da filmografia de Tarantino, ainda culmina em um climax longo e violento que certamente levara os fas do diretor a orgasmos de sangue.
Pablo Villaca - Cinema em Cena
It certainly places Tarantino among the most impressive film-makers at work today.
Philip French - Observer [UK]
Proudly doffing its cap to Sergios Corbucci and Leone, this latest, sprawling exercise in film lore dares to tread where most other white American filmmakers would not.
Ed Gibbs - The Sunday Age
Tarantino's made a great movie but an underwhelming film.
Ed Whitfield - The Ooh Tray
Waltz anchors this film brilliantly so that Jamie Foxx as Django and the rest of the all-star cast can fit into Tarantino's latest heady mix of styles.
Graham Young - Birmingham Mail
Tarantino's best for ages, absolutely not to be missed.
David Sexton - This is London
Tarantino takes an unusually comical approach to a provocative topic, and the result is as controversial as expected. And also startlingly hilarious.
Rich Cline - Contactmusic.com
Exciting, entertaining, funny, dramatic and edgy, Django Unchained is also intelligent and sometimes touching, often bloody and yet - in the end - a romantic softie, too
Andrew L. Urban - Urban Cinefile
No-one does humour in violence like Tarantino.... Hell's bells, there is a lot to take in and soak up in this hotdog Tarantino Western. It's a killer
Louise Keller - Urban Cinefile
Densely crammed, unmistakeably excessive Quentin Tarantino dialogue, Django Unchained is his most exciting, accessible and satisfying film for ages.
Steve Newall - Flicks.co.nz
A blistering, bullet-ridden bonanza.
Alex Zane - Sun Online
Who needs facts when there is great vengeance, furious anger and the path of righteousness to attend to? The magpie deserves our respect. Always. Forever.
Tara Brady - Irish Times
This is Quentin Tarantino's most entertaining film since Pulp Fiction, and its first hour is brilliantly funny.
Christopher Tookey - Daily Mail [UK]
For pure movie enjoyment -- or movie geek (I plead guilty) enjoyment, if you insist -- I hadn't had this much plain fun in a while.
Ken Hanke - Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)
[A] piece of have-it-all-ways hokum ...
Nigel Andrews - Financial Times
An arresting, both barrels blazing return to form.
Henry Fitzherbert - Daily Express
Not a masterpiece, but a funny, violent, very entertaining crowdpleaser.
Jonathan Crocker - Little White Lies
As in all of Tarantino's best films, there is a strange and brilliant magic at work here; a dark, bubbling alchemy of art and junk.
Robbie Collin - Daily Telegraph
If only all films could contain such precise dialogue and such distinctive characters. I'd be entertained every time I went to the cinema.
Matthew Toomey - ABC Radio Brisbane
We're used to Tarantino's films being multi-layered with several plots going on at once, but Django Unchained is a little too simple and, dare I say, dull.
Roz Laws - Birmingham Post
Shows Tarantino is on winning creative streak, able to engage viewers with a sharply honed script while authentically presenting unpleasant episodes from American history.
Tim Evans - Sky Movies
Matthew Turner - ViewLondon
Tarantino often reminds us that film can be used as a weapon. Here he purges all that racial ugliness from the past not by asking its left-leaning audience to whoop and cheer at whitey's demise, but by having our hero do battle with screen history itself.
Simon Miraudo - Quickflix
This is a wonderful film - it is, but once in a while someone needed to tap Q on the shoulder and tell him to ease up off the gas. A master and a genius, no doubt, but sometimes the Emperor has no clothes too.
Patrick Kolan - Shotgun Critic
Another strong, sparky and bloody entry in the QT canon.
Dan Jolin - Empire Magazine
If you only see one 'slavery' film this year, make it this one.
James Mottram - The List
What a pity Tarantino is so busy booking cameos from old spaghetti stars and tipping his Stetson to schlock that he never unchains his most promising brainwave.
Siobhan Synnot - Scotsman
It isn't the director's best work by any means, but it retains the excitement and punch inherent in his films. Tarantino's trademark playfulness and verve Django Unchained is a lot of fun.
Jon Lyus - HeyUGuys
Simply another of Tarantino's masterpieces that was very much worth the wait.
Felix Vasquez Jr. - Cinema Crazed
While a little overblown and overly long, a wide range of people will find at least something to like here.
Mark R. Leeper - Mark Leeper's Reviews
Pure entertainment, a no-holds-barred dose of double-barreled escapism, built around great characters, great performances and great dialog.
Mike Scott - Times-Picayune
A tale of empowerment that packs one hell of a cinematic punch, Django Unchained is Tarantino's epic masterpiece.
Cameron Williams - The Popcorn Junkie
A revenge film best served cold.
Mark Sells - The Reel Deal
Quentin Tarantino jumps back in his cinematic time-traveling machine and retreats to the past to rewrite history and exact some bloody revenge.
Matthew Odam - Austin American-Statesman
Somehow exhibits high art while it walks a fine line between serious historical re-purposing, inflammatory comic excess and brutal violence.
Bruce Bennett - Spectrum (St. George, Utah)
A film bursting with pleasures great and small ...
Tom Huddleston - Time Out
The film's triumph is the manner in which Tarantino re-envisions cinema's selective appropriation of history and makes it entirely his own
James Kendrick - Q Network Film Desk
Django Unchained is classic Tarantino.
Staci Layne Wilson - Yahoo! Movies
For his latest exercise in pulpy throwbacks and balls-to-the-wall homage, Quentin Tarantino once more wipes away the gunk of a zillion B movie tropes to do what he does best: apply a hyper-powered defibrillator to a tuckered out genre.
Luke Buckmaster - Crikey
It's everything you'd expect from a Tarantino film, with the violence so amplified and exaggerated it's nearly been taken to a Looney Tunes level of comedy.
Rebecca Murray - About.com
Django Unchained is part Red Bull and part bloody bubble bath. It's a hoot and a holler.
Tony Macklin - tonymacklin.net
This is pretty much exactly what you would want from a Tarantino western.
Widgett Walls - Needcoffee.com
Effectively tells in Tarantino's excessive style about the evils of slavery.
Dennis Schwartz - Ozus' World Movie Reviews
Tarantino's latest effort isn't his best, it is his most ambitious, and for someone capable of so much, that means quite a lot.
Tyler Chase - Paste Magazine
We're left with an overindulgent shadow of what could have been a much better film.
Jason Buchanan - TV Guide's Movie Guide
Django Unchained offers an embarrassment of riches (and actors in tiny cameos).
Marjorie Baumgarten - Austin Chronicle
Christoph Waltz is now the chief channeler of all things Tarantino. And that's saying something in a film that includes QT verbosity expert Samuel L. Jackson.
Clint O'Connor - Cleveland Plain Dealer
Quentin Tarantino sets his sights on the spaghetti western and delivers on the talky, ultra-violent bombast expected of him in the entertaining and confronting Django Unchained.
Matthew Pejkovic - Matt's Movie Reviews
Tarantino's blood-soaked ambiance is perfectly in tune with the more serious undercurrents in his spectacularly enjoyable Django Unchained.
Lori Hoffman - Atlantic City Weekly
Tarantino's worst movie is only good...not great.
Bob Grimm - Reno News and Review
A fine example of unabashed bloodletting in the context of the two worst applications of capitalism in our history, bounty hunting and slavery.
Ron Wilkinson - Monsters and Critics
Pure Tarantino; pure entertainment!
Jackie K. Cooper - jackiekcooper.com
I hope Django Unchained will be appreciated for being a complex film delivered under the guise of simple pop entertainment.
Beth Accomando - KPBS.org
A work that suggests someone brave or foolish enough (or both) to charge into a hellfire with dynamite strapped to their back.
Rob Humanick - Projection Booth
... it's a Tarantino Western... people will be screaming, the blood will flow freely and be splattered about, and the explosions are unnecessarily bigger than they have to be.
Kevin A. Ranson - MovieCrypt.com
A delightful mashup of blaxploitation films like 'Shaft' and spaghetti westerns like 'For a Few Dollars More.'
Robert Roten - Laramie Movie Scope
Hollywood has got to clean up its act --- and that goes for you, Mr. Tarantino!
Jeanne Kaplan - Kaplan vs. Kaplan
If a little bit --- okay, buckets --- of spilled fake blood are not odious to you, this is a hugely entertaining movie.
David Kaplan - Kaplan vs. Kaplan
Exciting. Funny. Gratuitous. Inflammatory. Insensitive. Stylish. Stupid. Sophisticated. Grab just about any adjective out of a hat and chances are it will apply to Tarantino's messy mashup.
Matt Brunson - Creative Loafing
he's either a genius or a savant, I don't know, but wholly without equal.
Walter Chaw - Film Freak Central
A lesser work by one of America's most ebullient auteurs.
Tim Brayton - Antagony & Ecstasy
Django Unchained is everything you want from a Quentin Tarantino movie, with a few new things added in. Powerful, dazzling, and insanely entertaining.
Mike McGranaghan - Aisle Seat
It's bold, it's beautiful, it's a sheer delight... and a more disciplined approach might have made a masterpiece out of it.
Rob Vaux - Mania.com
The first half of 'Django Unchained' boasts some of the most entertaining filmmaking of 2012 -- or perhaps of any year.
Betty Jo Tucker - ReelTalk Movie Reviews
Tarantino's spaghetti western of the American South is an untamed blast of stylishly rendered, outrageous entertainment.
John Wirt - Advocate (Baton Rouge, LA)
The sometimes cartoonish and silly violence serves a purpose: It contrasts the moments of truly disturbing violence that Tarantino puts on display, always within the context of the brutality doled out to slaves at the hands of white masters.
Ian Buckwalter - The Washingtonian
Slavery reimagined as a messy splatterfest where massa gets exactly what he deserves, and then some!
Kam Williams - AALBC.com
Though [it's] propped up by a pair of fantastic performances... it simply doesn't live up to the high standards set by his previous films.
Jason Zingale - Bullz-Eye.com
A cruel but humorous tale of robust men and women defined by the myth of the 'Old West'.
Chris Laverty - Clothes on Film
A daffy, loopy revenge story/Western comedy, this may be Quentin Tarantino's most purely entertaining film since ... ever.
Christopher Lloyd - Sarasota Herald-Tribune
Phil Villarreal - OK! Magazine
Indulgent and excessive, it's Tarantino at his bloody best.
Susan Granger - SSG Syndicate
Pure cinematic testosterone and filled with saucy variations on dozens of other films.
Nell Minow - Beliefnet
Despite a bloated running time, it still entertains with Tarantino's trademark combination of humor and violence.
Scott Nash - Three Movie Buffs
The director pulls off this look at the horrors of slavery with respect for its subject. With Django Unchained, Tarantino, through his incredible, outrageously violent Spaghetti Western Superman fantasy, tells the truth.
Diva Velez - TheDivaReview.com
The players are in fine form. But the movie he's embroiled them all in is a hit-and-miss affair, at times an amusing reimagining of history, more often a blood-spattered bore.
Four or five legitimately great cinematic moments, and across-the-board strong performances, but a bit too long and slow.
Stephen Silver - EntertainmentTell
While so many ostensibly serious films explore murky moral ambiguity, Tarantino knows that it can be cathartic to see unalloyed villains, whether Nazis or slave owners, get their comeuppance.
Marc Mohan - Oregonian
As an entertaining revenge flick with roots in exploitation films and spaghetti westerns, Django Unchained succeeds. But it never rises above its genre to become a real, affecting emotional experience.
Eric Melin - Scene-Stealers.com
Quentin Tarantino is seriously warped. But it's in a good way. His fertile imagination produces unique, albeit, violent and almost always, terrific movies.
Gary Wolcott - Tri-City Herald
When a culture tells stories that excuse its own evils long enough, the pendulum is sure to swing the other direction to reveal, even exaggerate, what has been left out.
Jeffrey Overstreet - Looking Closer
If you had pulled me out of the theater one hour into Quentin Tarantino's Django Unchained, I would have raved. The first portion of the movie is utterly exuberant, full of life and the love of moviemaking.
Leonard Maltin - Leonard Maltin's Picks
Brace yourself America, Tarantino's new film "Django Unchained" is a violent, hilarious, riveting force of nature that also just so happens to be the best movie of the year.
Mathew DeKinder - Suburban Journals of St. Louis
Django Unchained is a masterpiece partly because we need it so badly.
Kelly Vance - East Bay Express
When we look back at history, we tend to put evil up on this pedestal in a way that unfairly flatters people like Hitler, et al. Tarantino pulls evil men down from their dignified perch and allows you to laugh at them as the actual clowns they were.
Vincent Mancini - FilmDrunk
a better grindhouse tribute film and spaghetti western homage than his previous two movies combined
Kevin Carr - 7M Pictures
As hellish as its moral universe may be, those whose stomachs can handle the descent will find that even in Tarantino's world-perhaps especially in his world-those moral questions still matter.
Kenneth R. Morefield - Christianity Today
This is Tarantino's unique take on the western and it's worth seeing for that alone. While it may not be another great film like we were hoping for, it still manages to be one heck of a trip.
Jeff Beck - Examiner.com
At a shade under three hours, Django Unchained never once feels that length...a testament to the ferocity of Tarantino's fantastically unmannerly concoction.
Django Unchained is the most brutal film Quentin Tarantino has ever made.But the movie is also exciting and ironic and, at times, explosively funny: Even at his most serious, Tarantino can't help but entertain and show you a good time.
Rene Rodriguez - Miami Herald
As retreads go, Django Unchained is as much a comedown from its predecessor as Lars von Trier's Manderlay was from Dogville.
Ben Kenigsberg - Time Out Chicago
There's a case to be made that blood-spattering revenge pictures, no matter how evil the villain, are cultural poison, but if this is what it takes to [get] Don Johnson as a dyed-in-the-wool racist done up as Colonel Sanders, well, so be it.
Peter Canavese - Groucho Reviews
"Django Unchained" is the most consistently entertaining movie of 2012.
Mick LaSalle - San Francisco Chronicle
These characters dance a tense ballet along a razor's edge in the last third of the film, and their verbal sparring is the sound of gauntlets being thrown before things inevitably reach a bloody conclusion.
Duane Dudek - Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
Django Unchained is by turns exhilarating, hilarious, horrifying and poetic.
Stephanie Zacharek - NPR
With a fearless director and his mighty pen freeing a talented cast to attack a vital theme, "Django Unchained" is damnation unleashed.
Joe Williams - St. Louis Post-Dispatch
In spite of some exceptionally indulgent choices by the fan-favorite director, Django Unchained is another sharp and enjoyable Tarantino effort.
Ben Kendrick - ScreenRant
Django Unchained is pure, nonstop, blood-soaked ecstasy that is satisfying in absolutely every way.
Chris Sawin - Examiner.com
Brought to us by the much imitated, uniquely gifted and never surpassed Quentin Tarantino...
James Verniere - Boston Herald
Mr. Tarantino has learned the difference between sharing one's love of trivia versus sharing one's love of cinema.
Rubin Safaya - Cinemalogue.com
For a film that's just shy of being three hours long, it never felt bloated; every sequence seemed to have its place, and at the right pace...
Mark Bell - Film Threat
Good but not the best Tarantino has ever done. (Full Content Review for Parents also available)
Jim Judy - Screen It!
Jaw-dropping and eye-popping (literally, at one point), "Django Unchained" is a prime example of the glories that can result from a master filmmaker working at the peak of his powers.
Peter Sobczynski - eFilmCritic.com
It's too grueling to enjoy and too sloppy to respect.
Jon Niccum - Kansas City Star
Waltz's performance is so captivating and Tarantino's script and direction so well-paced that I hated to see it end, despite its 165 minute runtime.
Tony Medley - Tolucan Times
...writer/director Quentin Tarantino may have managed to deliver one of the most unflinchingly realistic depictions of slavery in the Old South to ever grace the screen. QT's vision is ugly and twisted and filled with all kinds of evil.
Jonathan W. Hickman - Daily Film Fix
Tarantino's sure-footed, gorgeously shot, darkly funny Western starts strong and gains in momentum until a breathtaking climax that represents the apogee of his adventures in culture-mashing.
Nathan Rabin - AV Club
Quentin Tarantino has made another movie. Or, rather, Quentin Tarantino has made the same movie again.
Chris Hewitt (St. Paul) - St. Paul Pioneer Press
Tarantino wants Django to be a rousing yarn as well as a commentary, but the movie so revels in its carnage that his larger point is drowned in a sea of blood.
Soren Anderson - Seattle Times
This Spaghetti Western via Blaxploitation Mandingo revenge film is told in three acts, the first of which is easily the best - the bounty hunters aka 'That's a Black man riding a horse!'.
Laura Clifford - Reeling Reviews
Quentin Tarantino has made a spaghetti western and cross-pollinated it with a blaxploitation picture, but it's fully formed, unapologetic and easily one of the best popcorn flicks of the year.
Tom Charity - CNN.com
Might be the most savage cinematic depiction of slavery ever made.
Kurt Loder - Reason Online
No disaster, far from it at times, actually, but there's a lethargy here that's disconcerting, blocking a lovely view of all the cinematic tributes and screen artistry that typically resides in Tarantinoland.
Brian Orndorf - Blu-ray.com
Thanks, QT, for the best Christmas present this fan of racially conscious films and blockbuster action movies could ever imagine.
Eric Deggans - Tampa Bay Times
There is no earthly reason why Django Unchained needs to be two and three-quarter hours long, other than to indulge its director's love of digressions and monologues.
Norman Wilner - NOW Toronto
A film that manages to pay homage to films of the past even as it sends them up and then pushes past them into a territory all its own.
Marshall Fine - Hollywood & Fine
Django Unchained doesn't merely hit its marks; it blows them to bloody chunks.
People are bound to read racist overtones into the material, but Tarantino has the consciousness of a 12-year-old boy; there's nothing more to his message here than Slavery Is Bad.
Stephen Whitty - Newark Star-Ledger
Unfortunately, it wears out its welcome about two-thirds through, which means -- no kidding -- 45 more minutes to go.
Rafer Guzman - Newsday
Quentin Tarantino has made a masterpiece! It's the ultimate film geek cinematic treat. It's dark, brutal, funny, compelling, engaging, exciting, expertly crafted and brilliantly conceived.
Austin Kennedy - Film Geek Central
Even at 165 minutes, this is a film that speeds by and one gets a sense of Tarantino being fully energized.
Daniel M. Kimmel - New England Movies Weekly
Perhaps I have an askew view of the world or an odd sense of humor, but I found "Django Unchained" to be the funniest Western parody since "Blazing Saddles."
Bob Bloom - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN)
Ranges from being brilliant, controversial,talky,long and cartoonishly violent. Basically it's Tarantino at his best and worse.
Jeffrey Lyles - Lyles' Movie Files
Underneath all of the bluster and irony, Django Unchained mostly is a buddy film.
Willie Waffle - WaffleMovies.com
The late holiday season's most dizzyingly imaginative and thoroughly pleasing release, an end-of-year jewel as chock-full of sizzling performances as it is bursting with busted knee caps and spurting innards.
[A] chronicle of a most reprehensible chapter in American history, seen through the amoral prism of the Spaghetti Western and drenched in blood and spit -- but mostly blood.
Mark Dujsik - Mark Reviews Movies
Tarantino almost saves his picture with his last act showdown but not quite. Getting there was a route too long, too clumsy, and just plain tedious.
Jules Brenner - Cinema Signals
If you're willing to accept its utterly over-the-top attitude you'll find it almost absurdly enjoyable.
Frank Swietek - One Guy's Opinion
May be the first Tarantino film that doesn't reinvent, transform or elevate its sources into something bracingly fresh, much less necessary.
John Beifuss - Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Brilliant comic turns from Christoph Waltz and Samuel L. Jackson help string together this audience-pleasing, highly uneven Quentin Tarantino spaghetti western/slave vengeance mash-up.
Chris Barsanti - Film Journal International
Funny, action-packed, and remarkably stylized. It's also a tad too long, containing a few scenes that should have been left on the cutting room floor, which could have resulted in a more streamlined masterpiece instead of merely a heck of a lot of fun.
Brian Tallerico - HollywoodChicago.com
Despite the way it functions as flashy entertainment, the weight of slavery can still be felt in Django Unchained.
Josh Larsen - LarsenOnFilm
Think of it as the gore-filled antidote to the old-school melodrama of Gone With the Wind.
Bruce Kirkland - Jam! Movies
Tarantino could do this all day.
Matt Pais - RedEye
The film gives us vintage Tarantino, a pastiche of Western, blaxploitation and Civil War-era movie tropes that's packed with his characteristically rich dialogue.
Robert Levin - amNewYork
It's not much of a stretch to call Tarantino's entertainment-oriented brand of revisionist history tacky, if not deeply offensive, but the energy and audacity with which he executes it is undeniable.
Alison Gang - San Diego Union-Tribune
Django Unchained is good -- I'd even go so far as to say very good -- but with a bit more care, it could have been as great as the movie Tarantino has been describing in interviews.
Ethan Alter - Television Without Pity
A mashup of the spaghetti Western Django and '70s blaxploitation Westerns, it offers Tarantino another chance to show off his twist on history. While it worked with Inglourious Basterds, it just comes across as contrived and excessive here.
Cary Darling - Fort Worth Star-Telegram/DFW.com
[It's] about racism, damn it, and it portrays that racism in all of its ugliest forms. ... Not always an easy film to watch, and it was certainly made with that purpose in mind.
William Bibbiani - CraveOnline
It's as though Blazing Saddles has been remade by Monty Python, except Tarantino's voice remains clear ...
Brett Michel - Boston Phoenix
Samuel L. Jackson's wicked house slave Stephen is the raison d'etre for Django Unchained. The layered and loaded Uncle Tom figure speaks to Jackson's legacy of shuckin' and deconstructin' black stereotypes with Tarantino.
Radheyan Simonpillai - AskMen.com
Django is undoubtedly one of the most creative and striking movies of 2012, but it's also one of the most exhausting.
Josh Bell - Las Vegas Weekly
There has simply been no film this year that awakened, excited, and satisfied my cinematic senses as much as Django Unchained, no film that succeeded better at its own ambitions or, with one or two possible exceptions, set it sights quite so high.
Jonathan Lack - We Got This Covered
[A] dark fantasia of the pre-Civil War South that is hilarious, ferocious, shocking, and wise, sometimes all at once.
MaryAnn Johanson - Flick Filosopher
Few movies have ever dared to stir such highly charged, combustible subject matter into such a cocky cocktail.
Neil Pond - American Profile
Tarantino blends the Spaghetti western genre with 70s Blaxploitation, creating an insane concoction of vengeance and thoughtfulness, tossing between the disgustingly funny and the most primal notion of violence.
Justin Craig - FoxNews.com
Django is infectiously rousing and exuberantly subversive. Say what you will about his insensitivities, nothing in Tarantino's approach is condescending or pretentious.
Jeff Meyers - Metro Times (Detroit, MI)
I've always wondered whether Tarantino would finally grow up. But after seeing his latest spectacular, bloody mess of a movie, frankly, I don't give a damn.
Cameron Meier - Orlando Weekly
Might be too much - and too bloody - for certain constitutions, but the rewards are plentiful. Be sure to hunt it down.
Matt Glasby - Total Film
Incendiary and proud of it. The work of a master at the top of his game.
Chris Bumbray - JoBlo's Movie Emporium
Perhaps not a great Tarantino film, but an extremely enjoyable one nevertheless, Django Unchained is a thoroughly excessive, gore-soaked odyssey that's blessed with outstanding performances - especially one from Leonardo DiCaprio - above all else.
Shaun Munro - What Culture
Plodding through the parts that the filmmaker couldn't bare to trim down winds up being more than worthwhile, however, for the many moments of sheer moviegoing pleasure that Django Unchained provides. It's a bloody treat.
Tarantino is aiming for the gut, and the sheer audacity just blows you away.
Stella Papamichael - Digital Spy
The end result is a goofily unhinged, consistently engrossing, facetious look at one of the darkest moments in American history through the eyes of someone who's spent too much time in the cinema watching inconsequential flicks.
Brandon Judell - CultureCatch
Expanding on his theme of historical revenge, Quentin Tarentino is at his bloody best here. To borrow a phrase, this one 'floats like a butterfly, stings like a bee'.
Joanna Langfield - The Movie Minute
...as a fun-filled tribute to those older, cheesier genres, Django Unchained absolutely works, and aside from being overlong is a pleasure to view. But it isn't more than that
Luke Y. Thompson
It's always so much fun to see something familiar turned into something fresh right before your eyes. Few can do it like Tarantino.
Scott Weinberg - GeekNation
While inventive and clever, it doesn't add up to much more than a minor film from a major director.
Kirk Honeycutt - honeycuttshollywood.com
The violence, the humor, the strong language all adds up to deliver on the considerable hype that goes when a celebrated director takes on an ambitious project. Here's to your thin red line, Mr. Tarantino...we're happy to step over!
Mark Ellis - Schmoes Know
Vibrating with the geekery of a filmmaker off the chain, the movie plays like no other this year.
Joshua Rothkopf - Time Out
Even as one of his weaker efforts, Django Unchained still ranks higher than most of what comes out over the course of a year.
A companion piece to Inglourious Basterds, Tarantino's revenge tale is long, excessive, violent pulp Western, but it's well acted, sporadically humorous, and always entertaining.
Emanuel Levy - EmanuelLevy.Com
I can't wait to see this again.
Django isn't just a movie only America could make -- it's also a movie only America needs to
James Rocchi - Boxoffice Magazine
All the Tarantino hallmarks are there: engaging story, hilarious dialogue, shocking violence and exciting musical accompaniment.
Kristian Harloff - Schmoes Know
Quentin Tarantino doesn't shy away from the horrors of slavery in Django Unchained even as he delivers a weird, wild, and bloody violent crowd-pleaser in this raucous salute to the spaghetti western.
Jim Vejvoda - IGN Movies
There's a good movie inside Django Unchained, maybe even a great one, but it hasn't been carved out of the lopsided excess.
Alison Willmore - Movieline
There's an undeniable pleasure that emerges in seeing Tarantino juggle the dynamite of his ideas, even when they prematurely pop off in his face.
John Semley - Slant Magazine
Whatever Django's issues, failing to deliver on its promises isn't one of them.
Matt Singer - ScreenCrush
Campy, funny, shocking, and seeping with sardonic social commentary, "Django Unchained" is Quentin Tarantino's finest film to date.
Cole Smithey - ColeSmithey.com
Django Unchained is Blazing Saddles with a body count, a positively incendiary entertainment about America's greatest shame, the personal and social toll of slavery...
Drew McWeeny - HitFix
'Django Unchained' thunders across the big screen as a fireball of celluloid flawlessness. Quentin Tarantino's greatest work since 'Pulp Fiction' and, undoubtedly, the best film of 2012.
Clay Cane - BET.com
While "Django" is certainly another passionately executed Tarantino effort, the major quibble is that it's not quite sharp or provocative enough to rank with his best films.
Tim Grierson - Screen International