Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood

Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood ★★★★½

Tarantino’s most self indulgent film to date. This feels like a mix of Jackie Brown and Inglorious Basters with every other movie sprinkled in along the way.

I guess I’ll start with the negatives. This is definitely a long movie and you can feel it. Scenes go on and on and on with some of them having little to no payoff. And I can think of one or two scenes that served no purpose at all. I felt pretty much every supporting actor (everyone not leo and Pitt) were underutilized. I was especially a tad disappointed in Bruce Lee’s use and even Margot felt kind of wasted. She was amazing as Tate and truly embodies her as a person but it seems like she’s not very relvant to the story. She’s almost there just for Tarantino to play around with the Manson stuff and maybe to a create a juxtaposition to Leo’s character? Speaking of story, this film doesn’t really have a coherent narrative, it’s more or less a hangout film. I don’t feel like the dialogue is as sharp as QT films normally are and I think this movie relies heavily on humor to pick the scenes up.

Ok let’s get to the good stuff. Quentin Tarantino is an absolute master at his craft. Some of those long and dragging scenes I don’t mind watching because I just love the way he approaches filmmaking. Even something as ridiculous as close ups of dog food. Leo and Brad and pretty much everyone else were FANTASTIC. Brad Pitt stole the show for me honestly, his character was by far and away the best on screen. Leo is quite amazing as well, especially in those scenes on set or alone in his trailer. It’s a shame they didn’t get more screen time together. This is also such an immersive film, I mean he really puts you in 1969 Hollywood and it’s incredible. The set pieces and production design are beautiful and absolutely need to be nominated for an Oscar. I think it goes without saying the soundtrack and cinematography are on point as well. The first and third acts are amazing and the second is good but not as great as the former. That big pay off finale is absolutely magical in every sense of the way and really hits home on all accounts for me. 

So at the end of the day, I still really enjoyed the film. This is definitely not QT’s best movie, nor his worst. I left the theatre feeling satisfied and ready to see this bitch again. I definitely think this is one that will age like a fine wine. 

8.5/10

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