Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood

Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood ★★★★

about a year ago, a couple friends and i fucked around on a hot day in my hometown. we spent the day skipping rocks at the beach and eating melty ice cream. toward the evening, we buckled in for this film in the theater––complete with icees and the too-cold air conditioning i never thought i'd have to miss. at the time, i didn't know anything about tarantino, just that this was a big blockbuster with some actors i sort of knew. this was the movie that got me to recognize the beauty of brad pitt. i loved this movie for the three hour, messy ride that it was.

in that year, i've learned a thing or two (but not much more than that) about film and i've seen a few more movies. here's a jumbled list of not so critical reflection i've picked up on in the last year:

––homoerotic tension between cliff and ricky is UNdeniable. though probably unplanned, it absolutely exists and i am here for it.
––if we're getting into revisionist history, why don't we remove polanski from the narrative? or kill his stupid, pedophile ass while we're at it? don't be shy, put some more
––hey! i got the inglorious basterds reference this time! good one!
––i will never forgive them for how they treated my man bruce lee. known for his poise, humility, and dedication to his craft, this is not only inaccurate but irresponsible to his legacy. though i wasn't quite as bothered by it initially, that scene really struck a nerve with me this time around. i can't help but question the motives of trying to tarnish (or at least poke fun at) the reputation of one of the most beloved asian american actors in hollywood at the time––especialy when, again, the treatment of roman polanski is so benign.
––we really get the highs and lows of leo in this one. loml as always, but i was also forced to deal with his can-i-speak-to-the-manager bob haircut toward the end there.
––if i'm not wrong, sharon tate training with bruce lee was a call back to kill bill?
––uhhh inconsistent narration?? why did fuckin kurt russell pop in like three times to explain something we could see happening on camera? will never understand.
––verdict on the violent ending still not out for me. undeniably fun to watch (like really, a blast) but i feel weird about it as a woman. like yes, those kids were real and murderous but on screen it played out like enacting a sadistic male fantasy. also just thinking about how it's *spoiler pretty randomly mentioned that cliff killed his wife...hmm...
––recognized sydney sweeney and maya hawke this time!!
––somebody mentioned to me that in the very beginning, the interviewer asks ricky and cliff about what a stunt double does and then just ends the interview. i couldn't unsee that.

at the end of the day, i still love the movie––even with all its flaws. feeling a lot of nostalgia for the days when we could sit in a crowded theater and enjoy a real blockbuster. maybe someday.

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