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The Teaser for Tarantino's 'Once Upon a Time in Hollywood' Is Fun as All Hell

Did Tarantino make a zany buddy comedy about the Manson murders?

by River Donaghey
Mar 20 2019, 2:24pm

screenshot via trailer

The first teaser trailer for Quentin Tarantino's Manson movie, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, finally dropped on Wednesday—and the thing seems like it's going to be the funnest film about a brutal series of murders ever made.

The movie is set in late 1960s Los Angeles and centers on a Western TV actor named Rick Dalton (Leonardo DiCaprio) and his stuntman, Cliff Booth (Brad Pitt), who hang around Dalton's house on Cielo Drive—right next door to where Sharon Tate (Margot Robbie) is horrifically murdered by the Manson family in August of 1969.

The teaser trailer doesn't give us any indication of all that impending horror, though. It actually looks, uh, like some kind of rollicking, screwball comedy?

The minute-and-a-half long clip is loaded with jokes, cool-ass Southern California nostalgia, and Brad Pitt dropping zingers about DiCaprio's loads. And the hijinks! Oh, the hijinks! Booth winds up challenging Bruce Lee—actor and martial artist Mike Moh—to an ill-advised fight. Dalton sheds some tears over his monumental acting prowess. Tate and Dalton even appear in a few goofy, psychedelic interstitials, Austin Powers-style. It is a goddamn delight.

The only hints we get at the Manson plot lurking under the film's surface are a few shots of the Manson girls at Spahn Ranch and a brief glimpse of a grinning Manson himself, played here by Damien Herriman.

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The teaser focuses mostly on DiCaprio and Pitt's duo, with a little screen time reserved for Robbie, so we'll have to wait for a full trailer or the movie's release in July to catch a peek at the insanely stacked cast. Until then, watch the teaser above and pine for the loss of a hippie innocence that Manson put an end to forever with his two-night killing spree.

Once Upon a Time in Hollywood is set to hit theaters on July 29.

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