pafifi’s review published on Letterboxd:
can't believe it. one of the best from the guy. top 3-4 in his roster. ridiculous to say so soon it might be the best but im saying maybe. without giving too much away i have to say how enamored i am by the structure of this thing. and brad and leo are just absolutely dominant. both roles so lived in. the movie ping-pongs back and forth from being riotously funny to edge-of-your-seat thrilling in ways i don't think QT has managed to do before (regarding the latter). cliff's visit to the ranch was unexpected and mind-crunching. the tension of a true horror flick. even at its most fun, the whole thing feels like a bit of horror movie bc you know what it's barreling toward.
it's also anecdotal and slice of life with tons of fun roles from maybe QT's most impressive ensemble cast yet. for all the laughs in the movie one of my biggest was seeing "TIM ROTH (CUT)" in massive letters during the end credits. leo and brad are so good that everyone around them needs to capture the same energy, and they really do. from the original chars to the historical castings, it's so much fun. damien lewis is fucking hilarious. RIP burt reynolds but dern ended up more believable and creepy in that role. props to QT for such a great anti-hippie movie. from don draper to rick/cliff people hating hippies is so fucking funny and i love it.
all of this is enhanced by seeing the movie at the theater that is literally on the fuckin poster. in other cases that could be the most obnoxious thing sayable. hollywood often slips too far into self-aggrandizement and indulgence in a way that feels unaware and ultimately detracts from the ambition the town believes itself to be built upon. to have pulled off a industry-centric period piece about this fucking period is no small feat. QT's first three films (maybe not so much RD but certainly PF and JB) are fantastic LA movies. that was his thing. since then he's gone to japan, texas, germany, the deep south, and the old west. the return home is as strong as it should be.
PS very funny way to basically cheat his way into making another western via all the stuff he shot for rick's career