Recently, I've become aware that certain films are able to transcend the medium by being completely self-assured in their atmospheres…
Every Man Needs a Sub Dig Guide
A 1950s-set drama centered on the relationship between a charismatic intellectual (Lancaster Dodd) known as "the Master" whose faith-based organization begins to catch on in America, and a young drifter (Freddie Quell) who becomes his right-hand man. After returning from the Second World War, having witnessed many horrors, Dodd creates a faith-based organization in an attempt to provide meaning to his life. He becomes known as "The Master". Freddie, his right-hand man, a former drifter, drifts through a series of PTSD-driven breakdowns. Finally he stumbles upon a cult which engages in exercises to clear the emotions. He becomes deeply involved with them, and begins to question both the belief system and The Master as the organization grows and gains a fervent following.
It doesn't happen often that all elements of what comprises film reach such a high level as with The Master. It brushes with perfection on so many an occasion which left me in complete awe for everyone involved in making this, but mainly because of the three main offenders; Phoenix, Hoffman and Anderson.
Paul Thomas Anderson is unmistakably a unique, powerful and resounding voice in cinema. Whenever he creates, something happens among lovers of film. Whenever he speaks through this wonderful medium I just have to listen. And while not all of his tales are equally impressive, they are always unique in style, content and themes. I find it amazing that a director who has received so much acclaim…
Paul Thomas Anderson is The Master. He is a filmmaker with grand visions, a director whose loyal followers pour over every word and dissect every scene and a writer who explores the failings and extremes of Man. Above all he is a hopelessly inquisitive man always striving forward and never burdened by contemporary fashion. And just like Lancaster Dodd, the charismatic false prophet at the centre of this film, his latest work is his most challenging, dense, contradictory and elusive to date.
Each new Anderson film is accompanied by unrealistic expectation. It would not be hyperbole to suggest he is one of the last truly great American filmmakers still at the peak of their creative powers. Yet with such a…
I'm not sure at this point that I can actually separate the circumstances under which I saw this film with the film itself.
When I got to the theatre, I wasn't expecting to see The Master. I had bought tickets to see Baraka in 70mm; I knew that there was a sneak peek going on that day, but I had assumed it was happening later, after Baraka. It wasn't until I picked up my tickets and the ticket lady asked if I was excited or bummed out, that I found out that I was about to get to see The Master.
Sitting in the audience, I wondered, how crazy would it be if PTA were there?
IT WAS REALLY FUCKING…
This review reportedly contains spoilers. I can handle the truth.
I find it hard to step back and take a critical look at The Master (or any of Paul Thomas Anderson's films, for that matter). Sometimes, films (or albums, or novels) just resonate with you, and you become emotionally attached to them. Sometimes you latch onto them so tightly that it takes years for the joy of the experience to fade and you can appropriately and fairly judge them. Your mind hears other people's criticisms and works to defend them, however tangential, frivolous, and contradictory those defenses might be. That feeling has not yet faded for Magnolia, so I think I've got a few more years of The Master-worship in me.
The most common complaint…
I'm going to go out on a limb here and say this is PT Anderson's best film yet. Yes, I think it's even better than There Will Be Blood. It's his most challenging, dense, and assured work to date. It forces you to look inwards in order to connect on an intellectual and emotional level, but it also challenges you to contemplate the entirety of human nature and what drives us. Just like PT Anderson's other films, it's extremely rich thematically, exploring control, power, regret, loneliness, action, belief, and truth. It's dense, but it's rewarding.
To say this film is stunning is a gross understatement. The richness of the picture is something that probably has to be seen on the…
Intoxicating as its booze, complex as its characters.
Beautifully shot, written and acted. A masterpiece.
The Master here is not one person, or two, but three. Take a bow Paul Thomas Anderson, Philip Seymour Hoffman and most of all, Joaquin Pheonix. I was blown away by these 3 when I first seen the film and nothing has changed upon second viewing.
Joaquin Pheonix is at his best here in the role of a lifetime, an absolute powerhouse performance and one of the best I have seen. Simply outstanding.
PHS is just as good, but the yang to Joaquin's yin. Hoffman's performance is immaculate, and quite possibly his best.
The film itself hasn't held up as well from my first viewing. It's still a very good film though, made and told by a unique director in Paul Thomas Anderson.
I never thought PT Anderson would make a film comparable to There Will Be Blood. In many ways, The Master is just as good. Phoenix and Hoffman are like dueling Brandos, going back and forth to best the other. The direction, score and cinematography are some of the best I've seen.
But as great as the film is as an entirety, the marvel lies in Joaquin's performance. His presence on screen is often unsettling and awkward and it seems so effortless and natural on his part. He truly becomes the character. His intensity is undeniable and unmatched in this one.
Paul Thomas Anderson's The Master has a fantastic cast, along Joaquin Phoenix are Amy Adams and Philip Seymour Hoffman. PSH may he R.I.P.
However, besides the cast this drama falls flat and tastes stale. For over two hours it drags on with a horrendous script, the movie drifts from place to place with no clear purpose or meaning. An author, designer, artist, and even movie director is there to tell the viewers a message. Now The Master may have a message for each to interpret in their own way, but I couldn't grab anything out of the muddled mess. I don't mind a movie that develops slowly, but not one that doesn't develop at all. The scenes in themselves, due to the acting, look great. Withal strung together they unfortunately don't mean anything, there's no direction or point. After the entire thing was over I was disappointed, saddened that Anderson made such a unexciting film.
Joaquin's best performance, and PTA's most subtle direction.
A lot of people highly recommended this movie and decided to give it a chance and well it exactly for me, Half way through the movie i was confused and had a puzzled face on what this movie was about and were it was going and what the heck was the plot. I stopped watching half way through to be completely honest, I must say the acting was very good in the movie that's no question, It's got its fair share of well known great actors. Still that wasn't enough for me but maybe this movie will be for you!
Perfection but you knew it would be right. Perfect casting best director great story beautiful visuals. Why did I wait so long.
I've come to the conclusion that Joaquin Phoenix is every bit the actor that Daniel Day Lewis is -- certainly in THE MASTER. From his posture to his facial and verbal affectations, he loses himself completely in the character of Freddie Quell and certainly holds his own opposite Philip Seymour Hoffman. While I didn't think the narrative framework of the film was as successful throughout as in PTA's other films, I did enjoy the film overall and it was certainly a showcase of impeccable acting.
When The Master was released there was some controversy over its inspiration. The Master of the film, Lancaster Dodd, was seen as a not-terribly-kind version of L Ron Hubbard, the fraudulent hack who created scientology as a way of getting rich. But this misses the point if you see the film as a broadside against scientology. A film that concentrated on the cult would concentrate on its wider social influence, but The Master is a the story of a relationship between two men. One of them is incredibly vulnerable. The other might not believe everything he tells people, but good god he believes in his ego.
Set in the 1940's/50's, the film opens with Freddie, a demobbed soldier who has…
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Every film that has ever been nominated for an Academy Award in any category. Enjoy!
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