“It’s all about the timing” is one of the cardinal rules in entertainment. I hope that I am not the only one who was repulsed by the fact that the movie Django Unchained, a savage and deeply troubling film about killing, was allowed to open on a night that, arguably, has to be one of the most profoundly spiritual times of the year. It is hard to resist wondering whether the decision about the opening date of a major movie is made by the studios, distributors, producers, director or perhaps all of the above.
To open the film on Christmas was bad enough, but to allow the film to be seen in the wake of the recent carnage at Sandy Hook Elementary was beyond belief. The decision to open this film on Christmas speaks volumes about the concerns of many reporters, parents, educators and social-media analysts, who are raising questions about the direction of America’s moral compass.
What enlightening statement is director Quentin Tarantino making here?
Neither he nor the studios nor the rest of the country could anticipate Sandy Hook, but they could have anticipated Christmas. I do not understand the wisdom behind the decision to open, as Miami Herald film critic Rene Rodriguez said in his Dec. 24 review, one of the most “brutal film Quentin Tarantino has ever made” at this time. Plus, whether or not this was “an exercise in revisionist history,” it does little to alleviate what we already know about present-day brutality.
Not opening this movie at a more respectful time of the year was an unconscionable decision. Shame on the film industry. Hasn’t this country endured enough death and killing? Do we need more in the form of entertainment? Tarantino may be a brilliant director, but the timing of his latest film’s opening leaves much to be desired. I wonder what would have happened if he had picked up the phone and said, “Pull it!”
Phillip M. Church, Miami