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Quentin Tarantino's Once Upon a Time in Hollywood - 60s/Manson movie


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Watched this, and really enjoyed it. I feel like it’s saying something great, which I get, but can’t articulate. 
 

Sorry haven’t read past the last two pages, if this has already been said, but re: Bruce Lee - I really liked that scene. 

 

Spoiler

And the scene is explicitly meta-explained in the film itself  by that point the film, Dalton has had a whole scene where he’s told that the movie industry is using Dalton as a big name to be the big bad, to make their unknown stars look good,and raise their profile, but it’s coming at the cost of making him look bad, and hurting him. The film the immediately does this to unknown character, damaging someone we all think so highly off, hurting Bruce and hurting you. 
 

I think that it is a fascinating way of telling you, then showing you and making you feel it  

 

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Front Row tonight at 7pm on BBC Radio 4:

 

"Filmmaker Quentin Tarantino is a Hollywood veteran and it was the ending of Hollywood’s golden age that was the subject of his last film – Once Upon a Time in Hollywood. He’s now returned to the story of that film for his debut novel. In his only UK broadcast interview, he explains why he wanted to create a novelisation of Once Upon a Time in Hollywood".

 

Will be on Baby Sea Clowns shortly after broadcast.

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Put the novel down in one sitting today, something I rarely do these days. Loved it. It's more 'The book of the film' than I was expecting, just expanded in character backstories, inner monologues, and extended scenes. Some cheeky business in there as well with the stepdad and his own imagined filmography. Like the film the book feels like a momentary wallow in a time and place, without much purpose (and as K points out, the Manson stuff essentially fizzles to nothing. If you hadn't watched the movie you'd be completely baffled by its inclusion). The clear winners are the extra scenes with Cliff. I wonder if his opinions do mirror Tarantino's own. It's hard not to project when the subjects are so specific and a little arcane.

 

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Finally finished the book.

Spoiler

I don't think I liked it as much as others in the thread and by the end I was kind of skimming pages. I'm sure there was meant to be parallels between Cliff and Rick and the Lancer brothers but I found those chapters a real drag. Some of the other swerves, like how Cliff got Brandy or his post-war years, were a total joy though. 

 

I did like QTs writing style. He has a real easy conversational vibe that I dug. (If he quits directing after his next film he could certainly have a career writing Alan Dean Foster style adaptations of his own films.) I was glad there wasn't much Manson family stuff in it but I was surprised at how quickly he covered the climax of the film - it was barely a paragraph. The Dennis Wilson bits were fascinating. 

 

 

 

 

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I loved the book and loved the film. But I do have a real hard-on for old school Hollywood and the film's of that era. Cos cinema used to be this magical, mythical thing. 

 

In fact I think I belly laughed so hard at the final 10 minutes of the movie more than anything of recent times. Except maybe the last 20 seconds of Saint Maud. That's for you @Matt Defis

 

 

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I watched The Wrecking Crew, which isn't bad at all, depending on your tolerance for dated vanity projects. Anyways it was a pretty, umm... 'meta' experience considering the events of the movie, plus Tate's inner monologue about being in the film, in the book. I kept having to remind myself that that was the real version of her 🤔

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  • 3 weeks later...

It's always interesting reading people's reactions to trailers and what they assume the film will be like then carrying on reading their impressions when they watch the actual film!  This is what I did last night after watching this film, read this thread start to finish and chuckled. Hindsight is a wonderful thing after all.

 

I went into this not knowing what it was about and not knowing much if anything about the Manson killings.  Firstly I'd say, I think it would have helped to know a bit more but even though I didn't, I still enjoyed the film as a whole.  What I've always loved about Tarantino films are the long, engaging seemingly irrelevant conversations the characters have with one another, which sets off something in my head which usually leaves me with a quizzical look on my face.  Where is this conversation going? why are we listening? is there a point or is it just a bit of self indulgent dialogue to show off the actors range?  I love it, and there is loads in this. 

Having known nothing about Sharon Tate, I just assumed Margot Robbie was in it for the hell of it.  I was intrigued to see where her story was going though and the cinema scene was perfect, really gave you that feeling of what it must be like to see yourself up on the screen and hearing people enjoy your role in the film.  Satisfying.

 

Going back to not knowing the Manson family story though, where I struggled was knowing what the hell the Spahn film set was about and why these hippies turned up to kill people seemingly from know where.  I must admit though I was so invested in the film by then, so keen to see Pitt in any scene with or without Di Caprio, it didn't ruin it for me.  I just thought of it as a bit of Tarantino silliness which he happily puts in most films.

 

So overall, loved it for the throwback to an age which is way before my time, which simply engaged me from start to finish and made me smile at the sheer beauty of it throughout.

 

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  • 2 weeks later...
7 hours ago, Protocol Penguin said:

Reading the novel, and reached the bit where it’s basically the author, Mr Q. Tarantino himself, reeling off a short essay about post-war Japanese cinema thinly disguised as a piece of prose. Magnificent.

Magnificent wankery. I think that’s where I put the book down. It was Ready Player One with better command of language.

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I've noticed this is on Netflix now. I've a patchy love/hate opinion on Tarantino films, seeing as they are always so long, is this one worth the time investment? 

 

I've liked Dogs, Pulp Fiction, Jackie Brown and Django, but not the others (although still haven't seen the Hateful 8).

 

Is this for me? 

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1 hour ago, englishbob said:

I've noticed this is on Netflix now. I've a patchy love/hate opinion on Tarantino films, seeing as they are always so long, is this one worth the time investment? 

 

I've liked Dogs, Pulp Fiction, Jackie Brown and Django, but not the others (although still haven't seen the Hateful 8).

 

Is this for me? 

It seems to be a love/hate film. Be prepared for a relaxed pace.

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2 hours ago, englishbob said:

I've noticed this is on Netflix now. I've a patchy love/hate opinion on Tarantino films, seeing as they are always so long, is this one worth the time investment? 

 

I've liked Dogs, Pulp Fiction, Jackie Brown and Django, but not the others (although still haven't seen the Hateful 8).

 

Is this for me? 

 

Yes. I find a lot of his stuff overly wanky but this is such a well-realised love letter to a specific era in Hollywood history that it's impossible not to get caught up in it. It leaves you feeling like you've watched a 6 hour film and wishing you could watch another 6. The ending is very silly but in a "Ok Quentin, you earned that" sort of way. 

 

It's quite good!

 

If you decide to watch it I would definitely read up on the Manson family killings in advance.

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3 hours ago, PK said:

 

Yes. I find a lot of his stuff overly wanky but this is such a well-realised love letter to a specific era in Hollywood history that it's impossible not to get caught up in it. It leaves you feeling like you've watched a 6 hour film and wishing you could watch another 6. The ending is very silly but in a "Ok Quentin, you earned that" sort of way. 

 

It's quite good!

 

If you decide to watch it I would definitely read up on the Manson family killings in advance.

 

Read the Helter Skelter book many moons ago, so I'm all set there

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On 28/08/2021 at 16:12, englishbob said:

I've noticed this is on Netflix now. I've a patchy love/hate opinion on Tarantino films, seeing as they are always so long, is this one worth the time investment? 

 

I've liked Dogs, Pulp Fiction, Jackie Brown and Django, but not the others (although still haven't seen the Hateful 8).

 

Is this for me? 

I went off Tarantino after Kill Bill vol 1 and I think OUATIH is absolutely amazing.

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Having thought about it, I think I prefer the ending of the book to the ending of the film. The film's mad flamethrower wigout is funny and exciting and very Tarantino, but I always thought that it felt out of place with the rest of the film. It felt like Tarantino was trying to do something similar to the insane OTT ahistorical ending of Inglourious Basterds, but it didn't work as well here as it did in that film - for me, anyway. The ending of the book is very low-key, but fits better for me given that its a very personal story about Rick and Cliff. My ideal version of this story would be the film with the Manson stuff removed, and with the novel's ending. 

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6 hours ago, Pob said:

I went off Tarantino after Kill Bill vol 1 and I think OUATIH is absolutely amazing.

 

1 hour ago, Festoon said:

 

Likewise. And likewise.

 

Kill Bill 2 and Death Proof weren't exactly brilliant but everything after them is fried gold. 

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Just now, Chadruharazzeb said:

 

 

Kill Bill 2 and Death Proof weren't exactly brilliant but everything after them is fried gold. 

I hope so, I’ve not even seen Django or Hateful Eight yet. 

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Hateful Eight is probably my favourite of his latter-day movies.  It concerns itself with a scenario, a bunch of characters and lets the actors get on with chewing the scenery.

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Django is the only reason I held on till the end of this flick and Hateful eight. I really wish I went with my gut, both had very little going on for me and I was glad the end arrived.

 

I'm not a big movie buff and don't care for some of the fluf and "beauty" in this. My mother (70s) loved it. 

 

My suspicion is he's seeing how long he can keep ppl hanging on through a movie. 

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This was bloody good. Went in knowing very little, other than the basic setup and general gossip during filming, came away being thoroughly entertained and buzzy. It's basically a glorious homage to old Hollywood, ageing, friendship and a massive dollop of What If! Gleeful stuff. As a side note, the Bruce Lee scene was utterly harmless, the proverbial storm in a teacup, imo.

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Finally watched it - its well made, the sets and era placing are amazing, its well acted all round, and far far too long and aimless up until around the 1hr 40min mark. I swear if he made Dogs today it would be 3 hours long. 

 

Tarantino would be better suited to making TV series now, rather than these bloated films. I knew nothing about the film before watching, as others have said it is just his homage to Hollywood of the 60s, that ends up doing an Inglorious Basterds by re-writing history in the context it is set against.

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