Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood

Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood ★★★★

Inglorious Basterds is a perfect film.

Once Upon a Time... in Hollywood is a film clearly directed by a man capable of making a perfect film.

It is easily entertaining for so many reasons, but concludes with a paradox brought upon us because of our expectations of a Tarantino film, harming his new work with his old filmography. It is not fair, though, to hold him to a creative bind, poking him with a stick and asking him to make more of something I want.

Judging the film on its own merits, however, it is a blast. It is a poignant jaunt, only held back by some screenplay choices that I did not personally like.

It is meandering, although sharply entertaining.

Funny, but tragic.

Conclusive and satisfying for some characters, but disappointing for others, especially Sharon Tate.

Tarantino doesn't leave a fingerprint on his films (or a footprint for that matter); instead he signs every frame with bright red ink. I love it. I love his wildly arrogant proclamations of genius unfolding in grand fashion. This film seemed like it was missing some of his narcissistic flash and excitement. This may be better for some audiences, but I missed the unhinged charm I've come to expect.

Nevertheless, it is a brilliantly acted character portrait set on an exquisitely crafted backdrop of late 60's Hollywood. A long, fun, slightly self-indulgent and surprisingly self-aware love letter to the golden age of the silver screen, and it leaves me wanting more.

The Fancy Lad liked this review