Oscar Rosales’s review published on Letterboxd:
Crime is a genre I really like, especially gangster films. And while Pulp Fiction will always be, in a certain degree my favorite of its kind for introducing me to compulsive movie-watching, I think I just found the best. I will just go on and throw the M-Word: Once Upon A Time In America is a masterpiece.
While it may be influenced on other gangster films, I think it surpasses all while also paying homage to them. It took 6 people to write this and it shows. Perhaps more incredible than the amount of people who wrote is that all 6 are sync to perfection, and it is never uneven. At 4 hours, it is never less than engrossing and extremely captivating. Lawrence of Arabia watches this film silently, crying in jealousy.
Sergio Leone, a great director, creates another visually inventive film and one oh so beautifully shot, mixing top-notch imagery with an expected great work from usual colaborator Ennio Morricone. A perfect example of this, and just one of many great scenes, is the instrumental rendition of "Yesterday". I knew I was watching something great but when I watched that single scene, the first transition from the 30's to the 60's,it was confirmed to me I was watching a damn fine piece of art.
One complaint I Heard is that the film is sexist. It isn't. It just depicts sexism in an unapologetical way, which is different. Robert DeNiro is great in this, because despite of many horrendous things he does throughout the film, there is still humanism inside his character, in part due to his performance.
Films can rarely move me as much as this did. It reportedly received a 15 minutes standing ovation at Cannes, which sounds bollocks, but if Leone and co. took the time to make one of the finest 4 hours in the history of cinema, I'd have clapped for 15 minutes even if that meant my hands became red. A gangster film which subtlely shows the horrors of crime, but also loves it as a genre.