7 January 2013 6:14 AM, PST | EW.com - PopWatch | See recent EW.com - PopWatch news »

Slavery remains American’s original sin, written into the original U.S. Constitution and responsible for the country’s ever-evolving, ever-complicated attitudes about race. So when a director like Quentin Tarantino decides to use slavery as the backdrop for his spaghetti Western revenge fantasia Django Unchained, it should not be exactly surprising that the film has come under a great deal of scrutiny.

What should be surprising — what should be at the center of any conversation about slavery and the movies — is how infrequently the words “slavery and the movies” are spoken in the same sentence.

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- Adam B. Vary

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