Once Upon a Time In Hollywood
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Pitt was pitch perfect in this movie. He seemed perfectly ensconced in this role as well as immaculately believable. His caustic and nostalgic relationship with his past is a relatable throughline to many would-be sports stars who fizzled too early. This existential angst is what propels him to think outside the four corners of the proverbial management page. It seems as though Pitt's character is chasing the dream that he lost much too early. Hill also had a formidable performance, outstripping his usual droll roles. He is a capable dramatic actor, who in my opinion is well-suited to more earnest stories. Overall, this is a self-effacing movie leveraging substance over CGI, which is becoming more rarified in the current geist.
This is a ripe example of transforming an ostensible ludicrous chimera on paper, into a magnus opus that will withstand the steeliness of an ice age. The director was evidently a shaman because he managed to give this film gravitas and earnestness, despite the fact that we are dealing with colossal turtles on PEDs. In spite of being nominally a kids movie, the subject matter is actually the antithesis of sophomoric. Its actually rather macabre. The inner psychological turmoil of many of the characters on screen was palpable and was not infantilized. If you're an adult, you will likely enjoy this film in a commensurate fashion as your kids. I enjoyed this movie from stem to stern. A perennial and indominable classic.
I'm not a fair-weather friend to this franchise and enjoyed the second installment just as much as the first. I cackled and guffawed as much in this film as the last, which speaks to its crackling wit. Some people's disdain for this movie was writ large on their face, but I reject their hypothesis. Instead, I trumpet and crow its plaudits. This film was not wanting whatsoever. I am a benefactor of this spectre.
In the canon of Matt Damon movies, Rounders is a furtive little erudite secret. It's a superlative hymn to the perilous and baleful world of underground poker. The logline of this movie is simple, Damon impetuously gambles away his life savings and strives to win it back from an imperious card shark. This film greatly redounded to Damon's preternatural filmography. In addition to Damon, the film is buoyed by colossal performances by luminaries such as John Malkovich and Ed Norton. In my view Malkovich spells the soul of this film. "You have alligator blood" and "he beat me...pay that man his money" are ubiquitously echoed quips that were birthed from this piece of art. Invariably this movie will remain the bar for poker films for some time. I was completely rapt by this movie—it surely warrants my imprimatur. In a time when potboiler, diaphanous and inchoate movies are par for the course, Rounders makes me long for the days when cinema was premised on substance rather than froth. Splendid job!
This movie is proof positive that a film's score and aesthetics can make up for a platitudinal plot. So to any desultory film maker who doesn't know what to write, as long as your recipe includes good music and prepossessing visuals you stand a chance at gaining purchase over an audience.