Once Upon a Time in Hollywood a tame Tarantino ode to the past

Brad Pitt and Leonardo DiCaprio star in Once Upon a Time in Hollywood.
Updated 14 August 2019

Once Upon a Time in Hollywood a tame Tarantino ode to the past

  • Premiering at the Cannes Film Festival this year, the movie lays out a canvas of what Los Angeles and its most sparkling icon, Hollywood
  • The movie only casually refers to the horrific murder of Roman Polanski's heavily pregnant wife, Sharon Tate

CHENNAI: “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood,” despite all the pre-release hullabaloo it created, is a far cry from Quentin Tarantino's best. It is certainly not in the league of his early films, “Reservoir Dogs” or “Kill Bill,” and far less impressive than what I consider his best, the fantasy drama, “Inglourious Basterds.”

Premiering at the Cannes Film Festival this year, the movie lays out a canvas of what Los Angeles and its most sparkling icon, Hollywood, were like in the late 1960s, years when Tarantino was growing up. In a skimpy plotline about an actor who does Westerns, the film's most exciting moments arrive when we meet the Manson Family at its run-down ranch.

The movie only casually refers to the horrific murder of Roman Polanski's heavily pregnant wife, Sharon Tate (an actress and model herself), by the Manson cult in 1969. But it has mostly to do with actor Rick Dalton (Leonardo DiCaprio in an exceptional piece of acting), whose days as a dashing Western cowboy are over, and feeling like an outcast, he begins to lean closer toward his stunt double, Cliff Booth (Brad Pitt with his easy “Ocean's 11” swagger). 

A large part of the thrill in their otherwise being-kicked-around-Hollywood life comes from their neighbour, Sharon Tate (Margot Robbie). Many works have made a spectacle of the fate that befell Tate, but Tarantino avoids walking the same path.

Instead, he offers a lighter, brighter picture of LA in the days gone by, recreating Hollywood from that era before the end of the studio system. We can sense wistful nostalgia, even unabashed longing, but it’s breezy enough not to dampen our spirits.

“Once Upon a Time in Hollywood” has a rather tame climax. The work could disappoint some who may have anticipated something very different. 


What We Are Buying Today: La Creation

Updated 19 September 2020

What We Are Buying Today: La Creation

When it comes to helping make memories last forever La Creation has carved out a market with a difference — for personalized wooden sculptures.
The international shop, available in Riyadh, Denver in the US, and Sheffield in England, produces handmade dolls as constant reminders of special occasions in a person’s life.
The wooden characters, which can be modeled on any individual with a choice of outfit, colors, body pose, and size, can be mounted on a wooden board for home decoration, desk nameplates, to mark the arrival of a baby, and for a host of other events.
The frames offer a way to celebrate anniversaries, birthdays, hobbies, professions, sport, family members, or a graduation day, and captions can also be added.
La Creation also produces wooden boxes branded with a person’s name in 3-D which can be requested in Arabic or English.
Customers can choose the background to their memory board — which comes in three sizes — from a standard set or by using their own images.