A fairly odd piece, although enjoyable enough. I think there's good reason why this one hasn't really stood the test of time though. It flounders a lot of the time and the tropes of the time are grating, not endearing like others.
Its technical achievement is stupendous: 95 minutes, one shot. What it manages to say in that 95 minutes may be even greater as it manages to capture the ideas of life, existence, art, death, history being in the past, moving on, moving forward all within its images, camera movements, and dialogue between our unshown narrator and the man in black guide. It's a extraordinary film, one that deserves to rank amongst the greatest in cinema for its technical mastery which matches its grandiose representation of ideas. This is what great film/art is about.
“ I am a writer, a doctor, a nuclear physicist, a theoretical philosopher, but above all I am a man, a hopelessly inquisitive man just like you." – Lancaster Dodd
Much like his character Mr. Dodd, Paul Thomas Anderson seems to be hopelessly inquisitive, and thus a confounding, enigmatic auteur and artist… which makes it hard to believe he is a big name Hollywood director. Take away Terrence Malick, and he’s probably the closest director Hollywood has that has not…