It takes a creative mind to take an old story and retell in a new and different way.
Quentin Tarantino‘s new movie, Once Upon a Time … in Hollywood, has just hit theaters. Set in Los Angeles in the late 1960’s, Rick Dalton’s (Leonardo DiCaprio) career was once red hot. But that limelight has faded. His best friend/assistant/former stunt double Cliff Booth (Brad Pitt) is always by his side. While Rick and Cliff try to revive their careers, Sharon Tate (Margot Robbie) is Hollywood’s latest it-girl. But there is danger lurking behind the bright lights and glittering facade. The Manson family is out to commit murder.
This is not the first time that Tarantino has played fast and loose with history. His 2009 film, Inglorious Basterdsalso played fast and loose with history. What I liked about this movie is that both Rick and Cliff are flawed and likable characters. They just want to return to the success they once had. As Sharon Tate, Margot Robbie tells the story of the real life woman, not the murder victim that we think of today.
If I had to name my favorite aspect of this film, it was the chilling effect of the scenes with the Manson family. Though we know now what plans they had in store, the general public knew nothing about the murders until it was headline news.
I recommend it.
Once Upon a Time … in Hollywood is presently in theaters.
While a standard desk job may sound like a good job to some, for others, the boring monotony is the last thing they could ever think of doing.
In the 1999 movie Fight Club, The Narrator (Edward Norton) is an average Joe with an average office job. Then he meets Tyler Durden (Brad Pitt) who by day makes soap and by night, is looking to start an underground fight club. What starts out as a diversion from the drudgery of his every day life turns his life upside down.
This movie is sort of quirky, but the backbone of the narrative is the story of an ordinary man who has an extraordinary adventure into the unknown.
Yesterday, the world was rocked by news. It was not an earthquake, it was not the assassination of a politician and it was certainly not a major financial meltdown that could impact the economy and millions of jobs.
It was a divorce. Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, aka Brangelina are divorcing.
Am I the only one who sees that this is non-news? It’s a divorce, couples divorcing is not news and not front page worthy (well, that depends on which newspaper you read. I read the New York Post, it was a questionable cover to say the least).
It is sad? Yes, divorce is sad and heartbreaking. But is also part of every day life.
Am I sorry that it happened? Of course. I can only hope the soon to be former Mr. and Mrs. Pitt can be amicable and mature, especially when it comes to their children.
But I wish the media would focus on what is really important and not another Hollywood divorce.
Once upon a time, women were taught to settle down and maintain a quiet life. Support their husband, raise their children and take care of the home. Nothing more.
Betty Friedan explored this issue in her 1963 classic feminist text, The Feminine Mystique. She labelled it “the problem that has no name”.
The 1991 movie, Thelma and Louise completely destroyed the idea that a woman had to be meek, amiable and subservient. Louise (Susan Sarandon) works as a waitress and lives with her musician boyfriend who is always on the road. Thelma (Geena Davis) stays in the kitchen so her husband can watch football. Needing a break from their hum-drum lives, Thelma and Louise decide to go on a road trip. Their road trip takes a sudden turn when Louise kills the man who tries to rape Thelma and they are now hunted by the police.
This is nothing but a classic. The journey of the characters represents so many women who made the choice to cut the apron strings that kept them tied to hearth and home and take the road less traveled. And of course, no mention of Thelma and Louise is complete without Brad Pitt’s boy toy character and that six pack of his.
Warning: May contain spoilers. Read at your own risk if you have not seen this movie.
Quentin Tarantino is known for making a very specific style of movie.
His 2009 not quite historically accurate World War II movie, Inglourious Basterds, is his own take on World War II.
The movie intertwines two different stories. Shosanna Dreyfus (Melanie Laurent) is a Jewish woman, whose family was murdered by Col Hans Landa (Christoph Waltz). Lt. Aldo Raine (Brad Pitt) is an American servicemen whose company consists all of Jewish-American soldiers. Their task is to kill Nazi soldiers.
Only escaping with the clothes on her back, Shosanna hides in Paris as the owner of a movie theater. Fredrick Zoller (Daniel Bruhl) is a Nazi soldier who is being turned into a hero by the Nazi propaganda machine. Zoller takes an interest in Shosanna, not knowing her true identity. The Nazis plan to use Shosanna’s theater to premiere the movie about their war hero and the Basterds see the opportunity to complete their assigned task.
Is this movie historically accurate? Other than the massacre of Shosanna’s family, no. It is a typical Tarantino movie blood and gore? Yes. But that is what makes it so good. Movies are meant to entertain us, and this movie is entertaining. And I will admit that as someone who lost family in the Holocaust, I can’t help but feel that the destruction of the movie theater is payback, if only on screen.