Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood

Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood ★★★★

Thoughts. I have thoughts on this one, but my thoughts are a bit scattered, a bit lackadaisical, a bit daydreamy, like the movie itself. I enjoyed it. I enjoyed it a lot. The fantasy of it, the catharsis of the ending, the performances (this is one of the few times I’ve genuinely enjoyed a DiCaprio performance). I liked Brad Pitt as Paul Newman, I liked his Old Western Showdown at the Ranch.

I see the film’s flaws (internal and external, though I think primarily external, social and political), and I need to ruminate on them – this practically demands a second watch. But mostly I’m happy to see Tarantino moving forward. This feels different, his first film in some time that isn’t a genre exercise, that isn’t quite as cloaked in irony and archness. I like those films, like them a lot, but this feels like a necessary filmic evolution for Tarantino, despite its historically regressive outlook.


By the way, on the Bruce Lee portrayal mini-controversy, I think Lee is intentionally used as a heavy to prop up the newer hero, Pitt, in a precise illustration of the point that Pacino raises to Rick Dalton in the opening scene.

[Alamo Season Pass, 35mm screening]

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