ONCE UPON A TIME IN HOLLYWOOD
It’s been a while, but Quentin Tarantino is back. The man responsible for critically acclaimed cult classics such as Pulp Fiction, the Kill Bill installments and Django Unchained has been “quiet” since his last offering, The Hateful Eight, in 2015. But he is back with probably one of the most anticipated releases of the year: Once Upon a Time in Hollywood.
Featuring an all-star cast (and we mean ALL-STAR) the film is set in late 1960’s Los Angeles where Rick Dalton (Leonardo Di Caprio), an almost over-the-hill actor and his stunt double best friend Cliff Booth (Brad Pitt) try and re-establish themselves as serious actors. The pair is loosely based on the late Burt Reynolds and Hal Needham, respectively.
True to Tarantino style, there are multiple story lines that intertwine one another as well as the main narrative. In their prime and highly successful Sharon Tate (Margot Robbie) and her husband, Roman Polanski (Rafael Zawierucha) move in next door to Rick, much to his annoyance. They subsequently have their own can of worms that they bring with them, naturally (we’re talking Tarantino here).
The film keeps a fine balance between the fictional character of Rick Dalton and realism of the time, tipping hats to legends like Steve McQueen and Bruce Lee as well as basing a large part of the plot around the notorious Manson Family.
Other (modern-day) Hollywood greats that complete the large ensemble cast, are Al Pacino, Kurt Russel, Timothy Olyphant, Damian Lewis, Emile Hirsch and Dakota Fanning to name but a few. It is also the last film that features Luke Perry, who tragically and unexpectedly passed away in March of this year.
Early reception of the film by critics has been positive, with ratings well above 80% on critics’ sites Rotten Tomatoes and Metacritic, a very good sign before the official release. A great cast, a fascinating story line, and one of the best directors in Hollywood makes for a perfect recipe to contend for one of the best films of the year.
Sony Pictures, who is also producing the movie, has described the film as “a modern fairy tale tribute to the final moments of Hollywood’s golden age.” And if that doesn’t get your heart pulsing for a night at the movies, little else will. As for us, well, we can absolutely not wait!
*Once Upon a Time in Hollywood releases on the 9th of August at our Ster-Kinekor.