Sam Thompson’s review published on Letterboxd:
I came, I saw, I came, I saw
I praise the Lord, then break the law
I take what's mine, then take some more
It rains, it pours, it rains, it pours.
- A$AP Rocky
I haven’t listened to the song those lyrics are from in ages but they oddly echoed throughout my mind for a lot of this film’s runtime. After watching this poetry, it sort of seemed relevant.
I think as I’ve gone through PTA’s oeuvre, I’ve grown to realise my favourite thing about him, which is synonymous with other great filmmakers like Kubrick. PTA doesn’t preach or pander what his films are about. He shows something to us and then it’s up to us to find something within the layers.
Magnolia is his 3 hour long epic with interweaving characters and an all star cast. Firstly about the filmmaking itself, of course it’s top notch and the acting is supremely superb. PTA is so impeccable in the way he uses music in his films.
All the stories may seem different on surface level but looking at what takes place, there is a greater story that unifies them all. I think that’s why this big ensemble movie works so well. All the characters are working towards a common goal.
A common goal of reconciliation with yourself and the past. Your past and experiences is what makes you You. I really think understanding Magnolia can be of huge comfort to viewers who have experienced trauma of any kind. Some things JUST happen. Sometimes it’s someone’s fault and sometimes it isn’t. But you can choose how to live from this point onwards. Something that JUST happened, doesn’t mean it’s impossible for you to find meaning or happiness.
I knew nothing about it going in but wow I’m glad it wasn’t spoiled for me. I don’t see myself watching it especially often, mainly due to the runtime but I adored this movie. Man, the year I was born was a great year for cinema.
PTA Ranked List