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Once Upon A Time In Hollywood’s 5 Funniest (& 5 Most Shocking) Moments -BB

Quentin Tarantino’s Once Upon a Time in Hollywood was a different kind of movie for the writer-director. It didn’t rely on the conventions of existing genre films. In fact, as the story of a washed-up actor riddled with insecurities who once played a hard-as-nails, gun-toting cowboy in a TV western series, it was sort of a deconstruction of Tarantino’s past genre work.

At the very least, it was a deconstruction of the mythos surrounding movie stars. But it still had plenty of Tarantino’s pitch-black comedy and stylized violence. So, here are Once Upon A Time In Hollywood’s funniest and most shocking moments.

10 Funniest: Rick’s breakdown in his trailer

Leonardo DiCaprio improvised this whole scene. He brought the idea to Quentin Tarantino on the set. Initially, Rick Dalton’s Lancer shoot was going to go smoothly. DiCaprio only suggested that Rick should start flubbing his lines to be able to stay in character and perform the scene as Rick would perform it, not how he would perform it.

This led to the two of them conceiving Rick’s breakdown in his trailer, a scene that Tarantino has compared to Taxi Driver. Rick’s meltdown is a hysterical scene, but there is an underlying drama in Rick refusing to accept that his best days are behind him. It’s a fear that we can all relate to.

9 Most shocking: George Spahn is sound asleep in bed

From a Pop Tart sealing Vincent Vega’s fate to bullets tearing up the floorboards of a French dairy farm, we’ve come to expect any long, drawn-0ut, relatively calm scene in a Tarantino movie to end with something horrifying. In Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, when Cliff arrives at Spahn Ranch and finds a gaggle of creepy hippies living there, he suspects foul play.

They stand between Cliff and George Spahn, the owner of the ranch and an old friend of his, and refuse to let him into George’s bedroom, claiming he’s sleeping. When they finally let him in, Cliff cautiously approaches George’s room and, much to his (and the audience’s) surprise, everything the hippies said is true. George is sound asleep.

8 Funniest: Cliff fights Bruce Lee

Cliff chuckles when Bruce Lee claims that he could beat Cassius Clay in a fight. Lee is offended by Cliff’s derision and they get into a confrontation that leads to a best-of-three sparring match. In the first fight, Lee takes a running start, jumps up, and kicks Cliff in the chest, knocking him to the ground. Cliff compliments the kick, then asks him to try it again.

The next time Lee goes to kick Cliff, Cliff grabs his leg and slams him into the side of a nearby car, denting the door. The fight is broken up when Randy’s wife Janet Miller, who didn’t even want to hire Cliff in the first place, objects to Cliff beating up the series’ lead and also reveals that it’s her car.

7 Most shocking: Cliff punches Clem until he replaces his tire

After we expected a violent confrontation in George Spahn’s bedroom and it turned out to be a harmless situation, Tarantino still gave us the violence we were looking forward to. When he returns to Rick’s car, Cliff finds that one of the tires has been slashed. He identifies the culprit, Steve “Clem” Grogan, and tells him, “If something were to happen to my boss’ car, well, I’d get in trouble. Lucky for you, he’s got a spare. Fix it.”

Initially, Clem refuses to replace the tire. So, Cliff punches him in the face, picks him up by his hair, punches him in the face again, and repeats the process until he does it.

6 Funniest: Rick’s conversation with Trudi Fraser on the set of Lancer

On the set of Lancer, as he waits to shoot his scenes, Rick meets a precocious child actor named Trudi Fraser. Although she’s only eight years old, she’s more mature than Rick, has a stronger grasp on the craft of acting (giving him a lesson in the virtues of method acting), and has more highbrow literary tastes, reading a biography of Walt Disney while Rick reads a pulp western novel.

Trudi is also more emotionally stable than Rick. As he breaks down crying, describing the has-been protagonist from his book, Trudi comes over to comfort him. Julia Butters played the scene (and all of her subsequent scenes) amazingly.

5 Most shocking: Cliff flirts with Pussycat

Brad Pitt has been one of the moviegoing world’s most beloved leading men since the mid-‘90s. So, it was kind of shocking to see him playing a borderline sexual predator in Once Upon a Time in Hollywood. After picking up Pussycat and offering to drive her out to Spahn Ranch, he flirts with her, despite the fact he’s a middle-aged man and she’s alarmingly young.

She instigates it, but Cliff goes along with it. He refuses to let her perform sexual acts on him without seeing some I.D. confirming that she’s over 18, but the fact that that’s the only roadblock is pretty disturbing.

4 Funniest: Rick confronts the “f****** hippies”

When Rick comes out of his house in his bathrobe, a blender full of margaritas in hand, to tell the hippies that just pulled up to get their “mechanical a******” off his street, he inadvertently changes the course of (alternate) history. He assumes they came up his road to smoke pot in a secluded spot, but they actually came to scope out Sharon Tate’s house – the house next door to Rick’s – in anticipation of killing everyone inside.

Rick’s rant in his bathrobe, as he continues to swig margarita from his blender, causes the Manson Family murderers to change their plans and target the star of Bounty Law instead.

3 Most shocking: “The dude killed his f****** wife!”

In 1969, years after Bounty Law went off the air, Cliff Booth is struggling to find work as a stuntman. When Rick Dalton asks his colleague Randy Miller to give Cliff a job, we find out why. Randy doesn’t “dig the vibe he brings on a set,” so he refuses to hire Cliff (at first). Rick asks if there’s some kind of beef between Cliff and Randy, and Randy simply says, “The dude killed his f****** wife!”

An ambiguous flashback sequence suggests that, yes, Cliff did kill his wife, but it may have been an accident. He was holding a harpoon gun, she was nagging him, and somehow, she died. That’s all we know for sure. It gives Cliff some ominous mystique.

2 Funniest: “Nah, it was dumber than that.”

When the Manson Family murderers confront Cliff Booth in Once Upon a Time in Hollywood’s big finale, they’re surprised at his nonchalance. He’s just smoked an acid-laced cigarette and, unbeknownst to them, he has a four-legged trick up his sleeve.

When Cliff recognizes Tex among the hippies he met on Spahn Ranch, he says, “You were on a horsie.” Tex says, “Yeah.” “Uh…You are…?” “I’m the Devil, and I’m here to do the Devil’s business.” Cliff cracks, “Nah, it was dumber than that. Something like…Rex.” When one of the other hippies says, “God, shoot him, Tex!,” Cliff remembers his name: “Tex!”

1 Most shocking: Brandy mauls Tex

Seconds after joking with Tex about his name while Tex holds him at gunpoint, Cliff escalates the situation drastically. He clicks his tongue, which alerts Brandy to the danger, and Brandy jumps up from the couch and mauls Tex.

Since these people are based on real-life murderers who killed a pregnant woman and her friends on this night, Brandy’s attack acts as the latest in Quentin Tarantino’s long line of cinematic revenge fantasies, after Jewish soldiers killed Hitler and Django killed hundreds of white slavers. In this sense, there’s something gruesomely satisfying about Once Upon a Time in Hollywood’s blood-soaked finale.

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