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Probing... Once Upon A Time In Hollywood (2019)

An explosion of creativity and excellence, Quentin Tarantino’s 9th directorial instalment ‘Once Upon a time in…Hollywood’ (2019) is a true spectacle representing the glory and gory side of 1960s Hollywood.

Revolving around the infamous Manson Family this dramatised story takes its audience on a detailed journey, around what I beehive to be, Tarantino’s idealised image of old Hollywood. Staring two of the best actors of this generation, Leonardo DiCaprio and Brad Pitt along side each other this movie was destined to be successful. Tarantino sprinkled in a few other familiar faces: Margot Robbie, Kurt Russell, Dakota Fanning, Al Pacino, Luke Perry, Damion Lewis, Emile Hirsch, Michael Madsen, Bruce Dem… to name a few. My point being this movie is a representation of old Hollywood and a comment on what Hollywood should still be like. I really respect the effort that it takes to feature such an all star cast in one feature film, it only reinforces the powers Hollywood stars have on a movie.

Although Tarantino created a cinematic universe for us to indulge in, within his universe he placed real moments in history. One of these moments manifests itself in the form of actors playing famous actors: Margot Robbie as Sharon Tate, Damian Lewis as Steve McQueen and Damon Herriman as Charles Manson. These moments create so many feelings for me as a viewer, knowing what happens to these people gives me some time of authority but by the end of the movie Tarantino snatches that knowledge me and completely reinvents time to shock, thrill and in my eye please his audience.

A final comment on Tarantino’s film knowledge, he is a cinephile through and through because he shows how in depth his character backstory and development is. Each fictional character he creates, specifically Rick Dalton an actor who starred in the television Western series Bounty Law, and Cliff Booth his stunt double. Both have a place in the timeline and they fit in perfectly as though they were real. Rick Dalton, played by DiCaprio, is a reincarnation of old time Hollywood bounty hunters. His television show based off of Wanted Dead or Alive, which starred Steve McQueen. As well as Dalton's relationship with Cliff Booth being based on Burt Reynolds' and his longtime stunt double Hal Needham. All these details mirror Hollywood actuality and it makes the watch all the more enjoyable, no questions are left unanswered, the ending coms full circle and only encourages an audience to think the best possible outcome for both Rick and Cliff.

This movie is incredible, if you couldn’t tell from the beaming review I just wrote. I could watch this movie over and over again happily. Please don’t stop making movies Tarantino, you are my true inspiration.


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Welcome to Film Probe, a platform where I have dedicated my time and energies to reviewing films, tv and more. I pride myself on offering more than just an opinion, but rather a carefully crafted insight into the film's themes, characters, and overall production.

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