There are few filmmakers who when they release a new film it is considered an event, where you feel the need to celebrate the week leading up to that new release. Now I am sure different people have different lists on who those filmmakers are and they should, as we all have our loves, but Quentin Tarantino should be on all those lists and if he is not I don’t know if we can be friends. Ok maybe that was too harsh, we can still be friends, but excluding him will just make me question things more, which I guess isn’t always a bad thing. I digress, with the release of his ninth film and one that seems to have had more build up than some of his previous work, Tarantino is set to remind you why the release of his films deserve to be the event that they are.
To be alive and famous in 1969 Hollywood, to say it simply, it seemed like the place to be. Rick Dalton (Leonardo DiCaprio) once was a big star as he was on a hit TV series, but now things are different as his career has entered the phase where other countries want you to come star in their movies. For Dalton that is the realization that his star doesn’t shine as bright as it once did. As Rick contemplates his next move, he and his stuntman/driver Cliff Booth (Brad Pitt) wade through the Hollywood landscape, where Rick is getting a chance to play a bad guy in a new western. While Rick is questioning his place in the world right now, needing approval in everything he does, Cliff is just living his best life and riding Rick’s coat tails for as long as he can. Rick’s life is put under more strain because his neighbor is Roman Polanski (Rafal Zawierucha) and the up and coming star Sharon Tate (Margot Robbie), so while their careers are on the rise he sees his on the way down. Their worlds are about to come together as one night will give them a story that will forever be told in Hollywood.
I don’t think there is anyone better to tell Once Upon a Time…in Hollywood than Tarantino, as his narrative style just seems to fit it perfectly. This film is almost technically perfect, from its carefully selected camera shots to its classic and at times obscure needle drops, everything seems in that aspect to fit like a hand in a glove. Add DiCaprio and Pitt’s performance, the later in my humble opinion might be his best work to date. I want to live in this world, but to be honest I want to live in Tarantino’s world without being one of his characters he has it in for. Since I can’t live in it, I am just glad I get to bear witness to one of the greatest filmmakers ever and with this film he keeps that standard he has set for himself. There are no bad Tarantino films, instead all there is, is greatness, the only question left to ask is, where does this fall for you compared to his previous eight?