The release of a new Quentin Tarantino movie has not been a regular release for a long time. The director has firmly established himself in the struggle of vibrant American filmmakers, who naturally draw attention to any project he embarks on, though he ultimately proves to be disappointing (which in my book never really happened). In this tuning fork, Once Upon a Time in … Hollywood it was one of the most awaited releases of 2019, and its arrival deserves viewers the same kind of cinematic solemnity as the director of the seventh art.
And as we try to do with all the greater work that goes into the cinematic cycle, Tarantino's 10th feature film (9th after his count) got the vip treatment here at website, with a critique without spoilers and another with spoilers, it is usually longer and more detailed precisely because it does not have the restrictions imposed by keeping secrets. But perhaps as a result of the above paragraph, the current criticism spoilers It is especially special when this critic innocently asked his colleague Luiz Santiago if he had seen the film and what he had found. Contrary to what I call the "civilized response," the guy was clearly happy as a dump or perhaps for the purpose of leaving no doubt that he was outraged that I got criticized with him. spoilers, he answered me with a huge and excellent mindset, despite the natural informality, of course, and moreover, almost completely converging with my reasoning (not surprising since we are both the only critics of website that set They hated eight No. 1 in our personal placement of Tarantino filmography).
The result? There could only be one: I incorporated his text into mine without asking permission from the "answer" and what you will read below is a Frankish amalgam of two analyzes that were not intended to be stitched like that, but were nonetheless . However, I left identified with a different color, everything pinned directly from the surrealistically long complete response from a critic who doesn't know that an "I liked it" was enough to satisfy my curiosity, meaning I enjoyed something like 90% of what he wrote, without even exchanging words for adjustments here and there.
Let's agree with the criticism.
The time of innocence
If we look closely at Quentin Tarantino's short but brilliant cinematography, we will realize one and only one theme common to all his works: Cinema. At the same time, if we start to decouple each of his copies, we will notice the different ways he approaches this topic. The most common of these is the amalgam of previous films, with unique results and the filmmaker's "face". In this category is more direct bearing Dogs. Pulp Fiction – Time of Violence and both Kill Bill.
Then there are the great tributes to certain movie periods or styles. Jackie brown does Tarantino blaxploitation the seventies were reborn in the mid-1990s, death Determination it's clean trash "Car chase movie" designed to be part of a Grindhouse-style release and Django free It's yours Western mythological revisionist. Inglorious Bastards It sounds like a war movie, but it is actually a work based on Cinema, with a title coming from the American version of the title of an Italian film, a critical soldier, an actor, an actor soldier and a Jewess disguised as owner of a movie theater that will be the debut stage for a major release of Goebbel's UFA.
ambitiously They hated eight it was a production designed to be tasted like a movie bag from the 1950s and 1960s, choosing cameras, lenses, movies, going through the scenic structure that pervades the constructions of the genre and resulted in a movie about the art of making one a film that happens to be a wild west too, with excitement or mystery only. Once Upon a Time in … Hollywood It's another kind of tribute, not a movie, not a style, not a way to make a movie, but a mythical, adventurous place that captured and still captures the imaginations of millions around the world. : Hollywood. But not just any Hollywood, but the specific Hollywood in the late 1960s, the last decade that can live up to the adjective "innocent" for a place that has never been truly innocent at any point in history.
Tarantino is very nostalgic here, not introducing to Hollywood as it really was, but to Hollywood as it was – and still is in a way – conceived: cheerful, sunny, colorful, full of beautiful artists going in and out. here and living in incredible mansions. In other words, a cinema paradise where all hopeful eyes turned. This optimistic, even innocent, view is not an invention, let alone something taken from the hat. It is actually. Hollywood's aura in the 50's and sixties was quite different from what it would have from the 70's onwards, with pessimism running on crises such as the Vietnam War and the Watergate scandal. And that is what Tarantino will capture with his lenses, using real facts as his turning point, to mark the loss of innocence and breaking, as a narrative device to create tension in his nearly three hours of work.
However, it is a damn mature work where Tarantino does perfectly what only really good instructors can do: Put the camera in the right place and move it to the right place. What we see on screen is pure cinema, in the sense that every image, every scene or sequence is the most scenic thing, a position, a cut off of reality without shame to show that it is cinematic representation. And it's charming because it's a movie about the end of a period (of a general spirit) in Hollywood, portrayed in the most dreamy way. It is pure, atmospheric cinema, and which only an instructor who really mastered his craft could do.
Ashes in paradise
Every good adventure is terrifying in its being, and the thrilling event that threatens Tarantino's Hollywood paradise is the famous and terrible stabbing of Sharon Tate, then wife of Roman Polanski and eight and a half months pregnant, and four of his friends in his Los Angeles mansion on August 9, 1969, by a group of hippie cult members led by the still terrifying Charles Manson, who died in prison at the age of 83 in 2017. This is the time the director and screenwriter understands the ending of this mythical, dreamlike Hollywood.
Sharon Tate was a rising actress, known for her stunning ethereal beauty, almost literally containing all the good things Hollywood had to offer. In the film, she is not used as a figure with a particular evolutionary arc, but rather as a literal symbol, which is why Margot Robbie appears so little and has so few lines, something that has angered those who without understanding anything and for whatever reason. , now go to the Internet regurgitate nonsense. In this sense, the actress is perfect in her role with widespread innocence, wide-open smile, contagious happiness, breathtaking movements.
However, the risk of Tarantino taking was great. The story of Sharon Tate is well-known, but not so, and the script is not preoccupied with explaining anything, never suggesting the "parallel" narrative that surrounds it, as well as a mysterious bearded tale in its home for a few seconds, and all the "ripongas" that are part of the Manson family are based on real facts. The director requires more than in any of his other films prior and exogenous knowledge of his work to be fully appreciated.
Unlike the appearance of Steve McQueen (Damian Lewis scaryly identical to the late actor for a significant minute), Bruce Lee's use of Mike Moh in the narrative, Polanski's own (Rafal Zawierucha) and the hundreds of other movie references that get rich, but not straight from the heart of the story being told, Sharon Tate's murder is, and he, to someone who has never heard of the case, seems far away – yes, causing tension at its most basic level, but it's not the same thing – and lost, from what I see boldly in Tarantino to simply assuming that people understand the implications of what they see.
But the Sharon Tate affair is not the only spot to pollute – or threaten to pollute – "even" Hollywood. Although Tarantino created an almost completely romantic portrait of this era, more or less as we know several adventures, that is, the "sanitized" versions of originals, he shows that there was already a disease that spread, this endogenous disease and from the origin of the system, which, as I said, was never innocent. Sideways, he uses Pussycat (Margaret Qualley) and his close relationship with Cliff Booth (Brad Pitt) to explore the dirt that no one until recently would see about Hollywood being #metoo now. The comment about Polanski, who himself comes from McQueen in his micro-participation, is sufficient to clarify the problem, although there is an interesting ambivalence when Cliff jokes about the "need" to ask for identity to have sex.
Sex is not the only element beyond the Manson family massacre. There are buried secrets, just as the question hangs over Cliff's head: did he really kill his wife? the flashback The unmatched immediately led me – why not, I don't believe in coincidence – to the doubts still hovering over Robert Wagner about his then wife Natalie Wood's death in 1981 by drowning.
And of course penetrating and frightening more than anything else, the forgetfulness that Hollywood ruthlessly forces its stars, this oblivion here represented by the character of Leonardo DiCaprio, the falling actor Rick Dalton. The classic subtitle in style Good dusk it is the most evil and cruel hidden side of bright and sunny Tinseltown.
The never-ending story
To leave the murder of Sharon Tate as the backdrop, Tarantino creates two fictional characters in the land of fiction: the aforementioned Rick Dalton and Cliff Booth. And using both, the director pretty much tells us the story of the cinema, or at least a good piece of it.
Dalton came from the movies, made himself on TV with a series of westerns, and now that the cancellation has come from production discrepancies, he lives on villainous tips in other series, trying to take advantage of what's left of his fame. Just as we are introduced to him, lived by an absolutely inspired DiCaprio once again, he is receiving advice from Marvin Schwarz (Al Pacino in full form), producer and his agent who thinks he needs to invent even again in Italy with it western spaghetti. It's clear how Dalton is Clint Eastwood or an amalgam of American actors who saw Cinecittà as an opportunity for a fresh start.
Cliff Booth is a stuntman and best (single?) Friend of Dalton. In fact, he was a stuntman as he now lives as an all-opportunity for Dalton, serving as a driver, antenna repairman, and attendant for solitude. Brad Pitt, in a performance that I hope will not be forgotten at the time of the awards, turns his character as someone who has accepted who he is into someone who has no chance in this mythical city. His troubled past is not only seen in flashback which leaves us hanging over his wife, but also in the unforgettable sequence in which he descends into the woods in a more than arrogant Bruce Lee – with Kato's costume – in September by Green Beetle. Not only is the sequence funny, but Tarantino spends a few minutes deconstructing the "Bruce Lee myth" – whether historical or not, it doesn't matter – to let his daughter go to war with the filmmaker in the second controversy ( silly) around the movie.
This actor-stunt friendship is worked out almost completely except for the plot that would flow into the final sequence. And as if that wasn't enough, unlike the similar theory structure They hated eightTarantino deals with the narrative progression in episodes, not marked episodes that he has traditionally done in his films, but with sudden clips that close one chapter and begin another.
The audience has complained a lot about the rhythm and says the movie is slow, pipipi popopo. And then the problems begin. Because I do not think the MOVIE is slow (in structural, narrative or rhythm problems that are at the heart of the script that is urgent on the one hand and tortoiseshell on the other), but it sometimes takes too long to give us something that in itself shows films that it could otherwise be enjoyed. See how he, for example. Follows Sharon Tate's steps. He can do much more with her in specific scenes (snoring, watching movies, entertaining guests, eating dinner) than in the contextual plans to link one block to another in the chronicle, giving the impression of "wasting time".
These are small moments when the assembly joins the points in a less harmonious way than the rest. And it might even be justified as: "damn, but the plot has a suggestion of chronicle, of course there will be a passage half hard, half" inelegant "between blocks." In a way, yes. But note that the chronic marking he uses at the beginning, with the division between days and then with the marking of the six months that have passed, is slowly fading and diminishing, as if we were living all the True Dream, and we knew not that. more apart what is the hollywood dream and what is the reality. And things get better and better, even when they aren't, in history. Leo's character has to sell the house and stuff, but he's not helpless, he has movies on his resume, he's active. His friendship remains and everything seems to be going well … until the violence comes and takes everyone out of the dream.
Until the event at the end, the montage gives the shivers that bothered me a little, and that kind of gives some reason to the people complaining about the rhythm. But that's not the generic thing about "oh, the movie has a rhythm problem – that is, its time relaxation is unbalanced." This is not it. It is because of these strange choices from the instructor (signage, half-way around town, etc.) we are pulled out of a big dip and then re-entered it. This moving out and into something very intense ends up affecting our overall perception of rhythm.
The sun is for everyone
The beautiful thing about what Tarantino is doing here is always to keep his gaze positive. This is perhaps the cutest, cutest movie (I promised Gabriel Carvalho that I would use this adjective in criticism) by the director so far, even considering the ending of Kill Bill: Volume 2, with the director achieving an unusual degree of sound and visual immersion in this second time, in this second place through not only contemporary songs, but the relentless use of radio and television that seems to be everywhere with commercials (funny) . in their surreality, if viewed with modern eyes), films and series.
It's funny how much reality here is stitched into fiction that brings a double life for everyone. But, interestingly enough, they're all a bit too innocent, too silly … they lack the dirty, half-notorious air of the industry, see? And I'm not saying that in a negative sense. The script never hides the shit (Pitt's character, the funny scene with Bruce Lee, etc.), but the general here lives in the greatest possible alienation: luxury, drinks, hard work – but dreamy aura, and there's a sense of community and camaraderie that ironically probably similar to the ideals of the much hated hippies. The counterpoint comes when something really extreme shows that there is a lot of hatred (irrational or political, see Vietnam quoted) around it all and that the world is not just this representation of a life on screen that these characters seem to live without break.
I loved everything about Al Pacino, with the strong backstage industry having his puppets, having power, but again, he's not a bitch. Tarantino makes sure to be as romantic as possible, so the ending is macabre, shocking and intense enough. Similarly, the night scenes increase and the ends gather. From many options, the text gives less and less space to the characters, less work opportunities or settings beyond what they dreamed. The company is channeled in a way that when the first blind turn comes, we become desperate. The photograph saturated in yellow, a sensational flirt with the footprint of Western Sam Peckimpahs urban Bring me the head of Alfredo Garcia and … pow, we have that Pitt sequence on the ranch. The mix of terror with something we know is generated in the future is handled by Taranta with impressive skill. and it works even for those who have no idea what the Manson family was about. We feel a great fear, worked slowly and led us step by step into an anticlimax, revealing Bruce Dern as George Spahn, the actual owner of the ranch where the killer ripples lived. The soundtrack emphasizes this and he goes there and rewrites reality, gives her another ending, frustrates the expected cliche, perpetuates the mythical Hollywood that Tarantino chose as his honorary goal here.
Given what Tarantino did in Inglorious Bastards, the revisionist end was somewhat expected, but very well constructed, with all roads inevitably leading to the most violent outcome in Dalton's house rather than Polanski's, after a completely mad Dalton shooting the four ripples from his street in a string of cooling hair on the back of his neck from the trunk that Tarantino is building. It is the catalyst for the changes that distract the killers from giving Manson orders to "let's kill those who teach us how to kill," which the backseat girl recovers anyway.
When they return, the photograph remains dark, even inside the house, populated only by the crazy Cliff and his obedient bitch Brandy. The following is pure Tarantino, head-to-tail, from the can stamped fiercely on the woman's face by the former stuntman (and note how his skills, his physical form, his fighting technique are examined from the start of the film, making this end even Dalton's delicious barbecue by the pool with his inseparable flame throwers (another narrative element carefully broken through the narrative, with even a second where we see the weapon is there in his house, in the garage).
Here we have the only deviation from my position – Ritter Fan – and Luiz Santiago, who says:
This is not the first time we have a revisionist Tarantino, but here the final effect of what he does is huge. In the end, I just don't like the "cheap" fact that is related to the girl who never dies, just like the bad guys Slasher. I got the point, laughed, but didn't like it much. It differs from the tone throughout that action, though it makes sense within the director's suggestion for that moment and that kind of villain.
Personally, I thought it was spectacular the escalating violence that the "immortal woman" ends up forcing, regardless of whether Cliff uses his face to "decorate" each and every one of Rick, until Rick transforms the girl into crackling. It was like a slap in the face, a wash of the soul compared to the cathartic line that went to see Hitler typed in motherfuckers.
The fact that he rewrites the story here has such tremendous significance in the end that we can read it in two ways: 1) it was the first attack, a warning and another that will happen and Sharon Tate is murdered anyway (and see how the path, the camera behind the trees, plongée his macabre portrayal of the characters suggests this … as if someone was watching) and 2) the violent act has been averted, but its impact on the news and for these people ends up having the same purpose, which is to blow the bubble off This hippie optimism that the stars lived and woke them from a dream and brought the "lean cows". Best of all, it works both ways. It was beautiful.
Rewriting history in fiction is a cumbersome task because what you want to deliver in place cannot beat the hammer just by changing a major action. And Tarantino makes the change by opening opportunities and bringing all the ends together in a way that draws our breath away and wakes up, as if an adventure is truly over, causing the title to count in two ways: from what it tells (nostalgic content, marking an era) and also by telling this story (epic form), flashing to Sergio Leone … It's a movie that's too mature, with some stumbling in the way that can't be ignored, but with an amazing end result.
Note: Luiz Santiago would give 4 stars to the movie.
Once Upon a Time in … Hollywood (Once Upon a Time in … Hollywood, USA / UK / China – 2019)
direction: Quentin Tarantino
script: Quentin Tarantino
cast: Leonardo DiCaprio, Brad Pitt, Margot Robbie, Emile Hirsch, Margaret Qualley, Timothy Olyphant, Julia Butters, Austin Butler, Dakota Fanning, Bruce Dern, Mike Moh, Luke Perry, Al Pacino, Nicholas Hammond, Samantha Robinson, Rafal Zawierucha, Lorenza Izzo , Ronin Coast, Damon Herriman
duration: 161 min