Once Upon a Time In Hollywood (L)

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I could really get into it and write a review for next two hours and forty five minutes but I have already scarificed enough of my time for this movie. If I did the review in the style of this movie, it would go something like this: ……………………………………….I got up early ……………………………………….I decided to get a muffin and a chai latte ……………………………………….I was early so I had to sit at the coffee drive thru, waiting for them to open ……………………………………….I sat with the car on and a cool song blasting ……………………………………….The coffee guy shows up. I turn off my car. The song cuts out abruptly. I say, “I got up early.”  Coffee guy says, “I did too.” 

And that’s basically it. D nailed it on the drive afterwards, where at lot of our shared post-movie analysis takes place. And this is how he described it, “self-indulgent”. Now, yes, I could spend the rest of my life trying to perfect directing a scene where someone with a flamethrower gruesomely chars another person to death in a swimming pool, but luckily I have been spared that fate. 

At one point I was thinking to myself. “This movie will never end.” And then it ended about two minutes later. 

Another D note, it’s really two films in one. Neither is really compelling and nothing interesting to speak of happens unless you think a shirtless Brad Pitt on a rooftop is interesting. Which, I’m sure that will be true for a lot of people but it’s not a circus side show, it’s Quentin Tarantino’s 9th feature or at least that’s what the poster claims. 

I tried having low expectations, I really did. But I just couldn’t and now the disappointment has arrived.  Al Pacino is in this film. He is totally wasted. There is a part of the story where the DiCaprio character, a fading 50s star now doing bit parts in 60s episodic TV, goes to Rome to star in Spaghetti Westerns. But you never see any of that. Another missed opportunity. There is plenty of meandering, driving on empty freeways and smoking by holding the pack up to your mouth and plucking a cig out. Plenty of that.  DiCaprio cries a lot. So what, I was crying too, on the inside. 

Another great D note. (This entire review is basically me, transcribing his thoughts)…Tarantino knows how to create tension. And he really does. The scene where Pitt goes to Manson’s cult compound is truly ominous and well done. The scene where Pitt’s character, a stuntman, fights Mike Moh’s Bruce Lee works. The scene where the DiCaprio character is schooled by a child actress is effective. But are these scenes enough to save this Gone with the Wind run time movie? If you saw Us and are looking for an interesting period piece about people who break into homes in order to kill them, don’t watch this movie, just watch Us again. Us is really a brilliant film that has a lot to say. Once Upon a Time In Hollywood is a well-crafted whole lot of nothing to see here unless you like watching people look at themselves in the mirror. 

If the young Tarantino found this new Tarantino he would slap him…or shoot him, cut off his finger, stuff a red ball in his mouth…you understand what I mean. 

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