Spike Lee doesn’t have much to say about Quentin Tarantino’s new film about a slave-turned-gunslinger. When it comes to “Django Unchained” he simply won’t watch it.
“It’d be disrespectful to my ancestors to see that film. That’s the only thing I’m going to say. I can’t disrespect my ancestors,” Lee told VibeTV in a recent interview.
The director, known for films that examine race relations including “Do The Right Thing” and “Red Hook Summer,” took to Twitter to further explain his position on “Django,” writing, “American Slavery Was Not A Sergio Leone Spaghetti Western.It Was A Holocaust.My Ancestors Are Slaves.Stolen From Africa.I Will Honor Them.” [sic].
The film depicts several torture scenarios slaves endured — and no, Tarantino doesn’t make a joke out of those horrors. The slaves, including his leading man Django (Jamie Foxx), are the protagonists of the film for the most part — with the exception of Stephen (Samuel L. Jackson). But Tarantino has admitted he took some artistic license. “When slave narratives are done on film, they tend to be historical with a capital H, with an arms-length quality to them. I wanted to break that history-under-glass aspect, I wanted to throw a rock through that glass and shatter it for all times, and take you into it,” the director said recently in an interview.