Saturday, April 25, 2009

THERE WILL BE BLOOD

by Tobias

> view trailer

A powerful tale of unbelievable greed that bursts off the screen with frightening imagery. Paul Thomas Anderson has created a larger than life myth and a triumph of filmmaking technique. THERE WILL BE BLOOD is a near master work in the same league as CITIZEN KANE, and THE GODFATHER PART II in my eyes. Watching Daniel Day-Lewis in this is like viewing some dangerous wild animal violently rampage, within the first 10 minutes when his character toils in a mine and absolutely no dialogue is spoken, we get a notion of how profoundly disturbed and brutal his character is. Daniel Planview embodies all of the cold and bleak aspects of the future effects of industrial expansion. L.I.E.'s Paul Dano also gives a demanding performance as the twin brothers Eli and Paul Sunday. The craft of THERE WILL BE BLOOD is so bravura aesthetically that it once again points out that Paul Thomas Anderson (the director of MAGNOLIA, my favorite film of 1999) is obviously one of America's most creative and maverick auteurs. Those expecting the director's trademark undertones of Christian humanism exhibited in all of his prior films (SYDNEY, BOOGIE NIGHTS, and PUNCH-DRUNK LOVE) will be quite startled by this film's lack of redemption and how faithful it is to Upton Sinclair's harsh view of humanity and capitalism. One of the most iconic and amazing sequences ever committed to celluloid in recent years is this moment where an oil tower erupts into an almost biblical scale inferno - cinematographer Robert Elswit captures it with a much needed assured majesty. Radiohead's Jonny Greenwood composes one of the more ominous and sweeping film scores in recent memory, It echoes Ligeti's most haunting stuff in the best possible cinematic way. I know this may be an overly ambitious statement to make by a film enthusiast, but I don't believe there has been this dense or poetic a character study of a destructive man since Scorsese's RAGING BULL. Atleast in American cinema there hasn't been. From start to horrifying finish, THERE WILL BE BLOOOD haunts me for quite some time after each viewing.

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