ONCE UPON A TIME…IN HOLLYWOOD Review — Tarantino’s 9th is Groovy and Glorious

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Once Upon a Time…in Hollywood Review — The grit! The glamor! The glory of Tarantino and his all star cast!

Once Upon a Time...in Hollywood reviewDefinitely the best movie of the summer…of the entire year so far. Hey, I’m going to go out on a limb here and predict that I may not see a finer film in all of 2019.

Quintessential filmmaker Quentin Tarantino has outdone himself this time around, telling a hippy dippy tale of 1969 Hollywood, when movie stars and murderers mingled on the sun bleached streets of L.A. Finding themselves in the dizzying center of it all are past-his-prime TV Western star Rick Dalton (Leonardo DiCaprio), and his good natured stunt double Cliff Booth (Brad Pitt). Their multi-layered bromance and a pit bull named Brandy help them maneuver everything from flagging careers and reputations to the horrors of Charles Manson and his followers

Both Pitt and DiCaprio are at their best, and Margot Robbie as Sharon Tate is radiant. But there are so many other fabulous actors popping up you might miss some if I don’t call them out. Look for exceptional performances by Al Pacino, Dakota Fanning, Luke Perry (his last), Damian Lewis, Timothy Olyphant, Kurt Russell, Emile Hirsch, Bruce Dern and Lena Dunham. Not all are likable characters, but Tarantino has given each a chance to shine.

Tarantino has also skillfully crafted each shot for sly, intentional effect, and although his storytelling is somewhat laid back, not one of the 159 minutes of this film is wasted. Thanks to a flame thrower and some revisionist history, it brings to mind his epic “Inglorious Basterds,” which is all the more reason to love it.

Since Hollywood seems to adore and exonerate films about itself, expect to see a lot more of Once Upon a Time…in Hollywood during awards season. In the meantime, if you live in L.A., make an event of seeing it, by watching the film, then eating at the classic L.A. restaurants highlighted: Musso and Frank, Casa Vega or El Coyote, whichever is closest.

Rated R

2 Hours 39 Minutes

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Once Upon a Time…in Hollywood Review — The grit! The glamor! The glory of Tarantino and his all star cast!

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Lisa Johnson Mandell

Lisa Johnson Mandell

Lisa Johnson Mandell is an award winning journalist, author and film/TV critic. She can be heard regularly on Cumulus radio stations throughout the US, and on BBC Radio.

1 Comment

  1. […] Brad Pitt plays the adult son of the world’s most renown astronaut, played by Tommy Lee Jones. An accomplished flier and military man himself, he’s chosen to fly from Earth to look into a series of planet-threatening electrical pulses that seem to be coming from Neptune, where Dad happens to have taken up a peculiar residence that persistently kills his crew members over time. […]

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