Evan Ambrose’s review published on Letterboxd:
It’s officially my third time seeing this in theaters! Call me a Tarantino fanboy, cause I’m lovin’ this movie the more and more I watch it!
Time to defend the main criticism that this movie has received on such a constant, unhealthy basis recently.
“There’s so many scenes in this movie that don’t contribute to the plot...blah blah blah...it should get straight to the point...blah blah blah...I studied at film school...blah blah blah...”
There’s this small movie—I don’t know if any of you’ve ever heard of it—called Pulp Fiction. It coincidentally happens to be made by the acclaimed director, Quentin Tarantino, who also wrote and directed Once Upon a Time In Hollywood. In this film, there are dozens, no, countless scenes in the movie that don’t really contribute to the plot of the overarching storyline of the motion picture.
However, that’s why people, like myself, love that film. Because those scenes are fun, well-written, and either extremely light-hearted or darkly comical. It’s all hardy-like build-up to the more grand events. They aren’t hampering you from the story at hand or wasting your time with, quote on quote, “unnecessary filler.” If anything they’re quintessential pieces to make our on-screen characters appear down-to-earth and relatable.
Once Upon a Time In Hollywood is a film meant to be enjoyed for the sake of witnessing acutely executed moments of grace, friendship, rivalry, and unshackled violence that all occur during spontaneous moments of the three main characters’ lives. It’s not jarring or pretentious, it’s just meant to be extremely fun to watch, and if you go into this movie with the mindset that Tarantino should have to make some god-like, schemed out tour de force of emotional and philosophical depth, then you have obviously never understood what has always made a Tarantino film so ravishing.
I think I’ve said my piece on the matter. Thanks for listening, partners. I want to lastly thank the sponsor for this review, Red Apple Cigarettes: “Better drag, more flavour, less throat burn.” Have a good rest of your day now.
🎖 Verdict: A-