Now That Brad Pitt Won His Oscar, We Can Finally Discuss If Cliff Booth Killed His Wife (It’s Yes, Right?)

As we all know, Brad Pitt won the Best Supporting Actor Oscar at the 92nd Academy Awards. The honor marks his first acting Oscar, one he obtained playing the most likable, alleged wife-murderer ever seen on screen. Pitt stars as Cliff Booth in Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, a war veteran and stunt double who, thanks to a nasty rumor, spends most of the movie as Rick Dalton’s driver and handyman. That rumor is perhaps the most intriguing mystery in Quentin Tarantino’s film: what exactly happened to Booth’s wife? 

The exact circumstances of Billie Booth’s (Rebecca Gayheart) death are never heard or seen (minus an interpretative flashback). All we know is that although he was never convicted, people think Cliff Booth is responsible. The idea that Cliff Booth may have committed such an atrocity influences the way viewers perceive his character, adding multiple layers to the Once Upon a Time in Hollywood experience. The deceptively simple tidbit influences the movie’s various themes and messages, making the “Did Cliff Booth kill his wife?” question extraordinarily provocative. It’s really hard to come away with a clear answer to that question, in fact, there may not even be one. In the wake of Pitt’s win, let’s finally take a look at all of the contradictory things in Once Upon a Time in Hollywood that may or may not be an indication of hubby Booth’s culpability. 

Cover Photo: Columbia Pictures

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