I saw this two days ago, in 35mm. I loved this so much. It's Tarantino at his most introspective, his most dreamy. Richardson's gorgeous work complements it so well. Might be some amongst his best work, which is quite saying something. The production design, costume designs, the use of music in the film... All makes for such a lively world, as if I was my parents age when '69 took place.
I just really loved the story. The way Tarantino told his fairytale version of '69 and what could've been. I also really liked how he, in a way, measured himself with the auteur directors from Hollywood back then, who changed the landscape and brought Hollywood to new heights. Putting Rick and Cliff at the centre of the story was a great way to bring the 'has beens' into this landscaping changing Hollywood, and how they would have to reinvent themselves. DiCaprio plays Rick so incredibly well. He's got the charisma down, his outbursts are highlights but so are his quieter moments. Pitt just oozes charisma all throughout, his character is troubled in different ways but not any less endearing.
Robbie as Tate was wonderful, positive, with a great infectious scene at her own movie screening. I loved how Tarantino
The way the Manson family was handled was all they deserved.
Qualley was one of the most promising newcomers, she had wonderful chemistry with Pitt. Dakota Fanning also still shows she owns the screen.
Overall it was just a very endearing, funny, bizarre, atmospheric film. Like I said, I really loved the story. Tarantino's commentary on that time period, the way he subverts history is tactful (yeah I know people disagree with the Bruce Lee scene but I agree with Tarantino) and respectful. Rick Dalton's other films/TV work was so much fun. Operazione Dyn-O-Mite and Bounty Law were probably the best.
Yeah there were some moments where we follow one of the characters perhaps a bit too long before cutting back to the others but the strength here was, that I never forgot the others. And that's when I know it's going just as intended and Tarantino played his cards right.
fwiw: I was well aware of Sharon Tate, Polanski, Manson/Family and the changing Hollywood landscape prior to seeing this film. My parents were basically my age now back then so even though I'm European I'm well aware of the cultural impact. But I do understand that people who are not so aware of it, for whatever reasons, could fail to understand the point of this film and how integral everything is to each other. Know what I mean?
Anyway, I thought this was a blast. Amongst Tarantino's best work, but for me his best is still Kill Bill
. So far the most polarising thing he's done.