Ash’s review published on Letterboxd:
Wow, what do I even say?
Tarantino’s just showing off now.
He’s stunningly ahead of the game - Once Upon A Time In Hollywood is an absolute masterpiece as the nostalgia it is crafted as.
This is a director at the height of his powers and capabilities, crafting a passionate love letter to his craft and admiration for films.
It is Tarantino at his most human and self-reflective state, paying tribute to the legacy of the Golden Age of films, in the backdrop of 1960s Hollywood.
Choosing not to glorify any of the horrific real-life events that obviously inspired the film, Once Upon A Time In Hollywood instead embraces the notions of love, inspiration and passion, altering factual history for a better-suited ending that plays part in tributing Hollywood’s Golden Age of films.
Leonardo DiCaprio and Brad Pitt are a sensational duo as actor Rick Dalton and his stuntman, Cliff Booth. DiCaprio’s emotional and melodramatic Rick perfectly contrasts that of Pitt’s sturdy and composed Cliff, forming a fascinating dynamic between the two, that in-part creates an iconic partnership.
DiCaprio is magnificent, this being one of his best roles, but Pitt is just something else. He impresses beyond belief, nabbing much of the runtime to his own character arc, as well as stealing every scene he’s in.
With Moneyball and The Tree of Life, 2011 was the ‘year of Brad Pitt’, but now with Once Upon A Time In Hollywood having arrived, and Ad Astra soon arriving, 2019 could be seen as the resurgence of another ‘year of Brad Pitt’.
I definitely feel like this could be the year that Pitt takes home gold. He deserved it in 2011, but with a stylish Tarantino performance (and possibly even with an outer-space, Apocalyspe Now-esque voyage) Pitt could finally be receiving the awards recognition he deserves.
I definitely feel like DiCaprio (for best actor), OUATIH (for best film) and Quentin Tarantino (for best director) could be certainties as well. This might also be the year when Quentin finally wins a beat director award.
I’m honestly so impressed by this film. I went in expecting an all-timer: a film that would blow me away, a film that would definitely be one of my favourites, a film that would just be beyond what a masterpiece is - my expectations were so high, but it still managed to surpass it and impress me.
ONCE UPON A TIME IN HOLLYWOOD is a heartfelt ode to 1960s Hollywood - to the Golden Age of Films.
This is Quentin Tarantino at his peak.
This is his tribute to Hollywood’s Golden Age of Films... to his craft... to his love and admiration for films.
This is Tarantino’s masterpiece... his mastercraft... his magnum opus.
These are the moments I wish to live, the Hollywood fantasies I dream to come true.
These are the films I live to see - the films that move me away and inspire me to make films.
This is cinema.