There Will Be Blood

There are great films, and then there are “Great” films. We’re talking epic films of scope and ambition, films forged by the boldest of artists hoping to leave behind a legacy of a lasting pile of images, the depth and meaning behind them just as grand as the images themselves. Films like Citizen Kane, Lawrence of Arabia, 2001: A Space Odyssey, The Godfather part I and II, Barry Lyndon, Days of Heaven, Apocalypse Now, Heaven’s Gate, Blade Runner, Ran, or The Thin Red Line spring to mind. Surely, Paul Thomas Anderson’s There Will Be Blood can stand alongside such monuments as perhaps the great American film of the 21st century. From its 2001-inspired opening to the violent climax it rages towards, There Will Be Blood is a cinematic force to be reckoned with, a thought-provoking parable of such American institutions as capitalist greed and religious fundamentalism run afoul at the turn of the century. And at its center is Daniel Day Lewis giving one of the great screen performances of all time as Daniel Plainview, a man possessed, whose heart turns as black as the oil he slavishly hoards over. This is once in a generation cinema of the highest order, and I feel very fortunate I could see this in theaters upon initial release. It only grows richer and more powerful on subsequent viewings.