Once Upon a Time in Hollywood | Teen Ink

Once Upon a Time in Hollywood

August 4, 2019
By Anonymous

 Once Upon a Time in Hollywood is the famous Quentin Tarantino's take on Hollywood in Los Angeles during the year 1969. As his ninth film, the movie revolves around television star Rick Dalton and his stunt double Cliff Booth. Both Rick and Cliff must deal with the changing times, which might mean that their greatest success is now behind them, making them both feel emasculated and worth less. The two of them must now maneuver their way around this changing industry of entertainment, despite how they are unsure that they even know what they're doing. Without their jobs, they're not sure what they are going to do next in their life, so they feel pretty loss at what is going to come next for them. However, as all of this unfolds, Rick and Cliff deal with other people's problems, including their famous neighbors next door that consist of Sharon Tate and her husband and wild hippies that are only interested in accomplishing what they believe in, but through it all, Quentin Tarantino transports audiences to a different Hollywood that existed not that long ago, demonstrating just how much things have changed. 

 Once Upon a Time in Hollywood is an engaging roller coaster that manages to successfully immerse audiences in 1969, which is the goal of the movie. Utilizing several techniques to create plenty of nostalgia, the movie successfully showcases what Los Angeles and the entertainment industry were like during the 1960's, and this nostalgic element will especially appeal to audiences of an older age, where they will be reminded of what life was like beforehand and, for many, what their childhood was like. However, this same nostalgia also may come as a disappointment for a younger age group. While it might be enjoyable for those that were around during the period of time, for others, they may find that the development of what life was like back then could be slightly slow and not that interesting. Most younger viewers will not pick up all the references that the movie makes, mostly because most of them hamper back to a time before they were born, so there really is no way to truly appreciate this quality of the movie without being of a certain age. Regardless, the rest of the movie manages to balance between being nostalgic and developing the rest of the movie, which proves to be entertaining for people of all ages. 
 Once Upon a Time in Hollywood manages to build upon all of its layers as the movie progresses, which makes the movie multidimensional and that much more impressive. The complexity of the story increases with time, as well as the drama and emotion, which further captivates the audience's attention. While the plot of the movie is far from traditional, almost all parts of it ensure that drama is conveyed, and for the most part, it is very effective. However, the unique format of the plot further cements the concept of the movie being unorthodox and fresh. In that regard, the movie may take place in the past, but it feels surprisingly modern in a manner that only Quentin Tarantino could pull off. He manages to throw in plenty of shocking surprises after one another to create a drama with plenty of thrilling twists and turns. 

 Once Upon a Time in Hollywood gathers together a stellar ensemble that shines throughout. Brad Pitt is just brilliant as Cliff Booth, and he manages to bring an intense level of passion to the role. The character is easy to like and root for, which allows his role to instantly become a fan-favorite. Leonardo DiCaprio is deliriously terrific as Rick Dalton, and his portrayal is packed to the brim with emotion galore. DiCaprio's Rick Dalton combines together with Pitt's performance as Cliff Booth to create an awesome acting duo that forms the very core of the movie with triumphant success. The friendship and on-screen chemistry of the characters is nothing to scoff at, and this relationship, both between the actors and the characters, makes up the true heart of the movie. Without their incredible performances, the movie would certainly not succeed at quite the same level, but luckily, this is simply not the case. There are some other notable roles, most importantly Margot Robbie's magnificent representation of Sharon Tate, but the cast as a whole is just such a talented bunch that everyone is noteworthy. 

 Once Upon a Time in Hollywood is an overall enriching story that allows audiences to learn what life was like in Los Angeles in 1969. There's plenty of drama, action, emotion and enough nostalgia to please those of an age to appreciate it in all of its creativeness. While the movie is far from traditional, it is absolutely worth watching so that viewers can formulate their own opinions on this unique film. 


The author's comments:

"Anybody accidentally kills anybody in a fight, they go to jail. It’s called manslaughter." - Cliff Booth


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