Jack Aling’s review published on Letterboxd:
Stylish and Sophisticated.
In his latest and very polarising film, after my look back through Tarantino's past work, we finally arrive at Once Upon A Time in Hollywood.
Tarantino is obviously and clearly a fan of cinema. He gets to show audiences what made him fall in love with the industry in this latest piece.
Set in the yesteryear of Hollywood, we are in Tarantino's version of the industry, where everything seems the same but is subtlety different.
I would say this film has many similarities to Pulp Fiction. What I mean by that is that in the general scheme of things, for most of the film not a lot happens. We follow these characters living their lives and their highs and lows but we just… follow them. And I think this is where this film becomes so polarising.
I have friends that love and some that hate this film. For me it all comes down to the characters. If you aren't invested in the characters, then for a film where you just watch them during their daily lives, it's going to be a long 160 minutes.
Thankfully… I did. Robbie unfortunately didn't get a lot to do, which gave Pitt and DiCaprio time to shine. Their friendship and journey they go on was so fun to watch and seeing how they cope with their problems when they are alone show why they are both two of the best actors in the game.
Ok, let's talk about the final 20 minutes. Insane and completely out of left field, it was like Tarantino realised as he was wrapping up the script that he hadn't included any of his signature violence. Unnecessary? Yes, but it was so exciting to watch, I'll forgive him for it.
Tarantino is without a doubt one of the most mainstream but exciting voices in cinema today and it was a joy to revisit his work. As we approach his famous 10th film, it will be interesting to see where he heads next, but regardless I'll be there opening weekend.
The Path Of The Righteous Man: Tarantino Ranked.