WEIRDLAND: Moral Reckoning hits hard in Tarantino’s Once Upon a Time in Hollywood

Friday, July 26, 2019

Moral Reckoning hits hard in Tarantino’s Once Upon a Time in Hollywood

"Tarantino’s Once Upon a Time … in Hollywood Is His Best Film: It’s also his first political film, with a moral reckoning that hits hard. At the screening I attended, most of the audience went into quiet shock during QT’s finale, an extended sequence of conventional action-movie moral reckoning." -Armond White (National Review)

Tarantino once said, “When people ask me if I went to film school I tell them, ‘no, I went to films.’” And it’s that education by projector light that weaves its way through every frame of “Once Upon a Time … in Hollywood,” a movie only he could have devised. And yet this is not the film that hardcore fans of “Pulp Fiction” and “Inglourious Basterds” may be expecting. It’s somber at times in the way it seems to be trying to grab something just of reach—the limitless potential of the people on the fringe of the city of angels and an attempt to capture a mythical time when movies, real life, and imagination could intertwine. It’s one of those rare movies that will provoke conversation and debate long enough to cement itself in the public consciousness. Source:

With his latest feature, Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood, Tarantino finally moves beyond the comfortable confines he created and delivers an assured masterpiece of breathtaking, and restrained filmmaking. Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood is Tarantino's most complete film to date. Each character has their own voice and they are written with the depth needed to speak for themselves. Tarantino was destined to make a film about Hollywood. There are beautiful maidens, charming princes, dreamers of ridiculous dreams, and evil hippies. Lots and lots of evil hippies. The Manson Family members are portrayed as individuals with free will who deliberately made poor choices rather than being brainwashing victims, and hippie culture/drug culture isn't glorified either. With restraint and understated sentimentality, Tarantino gives Rick and Sharon a chance to escape their insecurities through fleeting moments of professional recognition. Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood forestalls cynicism and irony to indulge a simpler time in the world of make-believe. I left wondering if the message of this LA fairy tale was really a warning of a bleak future for art and cinema. Source:

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