There Will Be Blood (2007)

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There has been a hole in my viewing. I have not seen very many Daniel Day-Lewis movies over the years.  I know he is considered one of, if not the, greatest actors of all time, but I have only seen a handful of his films.  I watched There Will Be Blood tonight and I can see where that reputation has come from.

In There Will Be Blood, Day-Lewis plays an oilman named Daniel Plainview who is searching for land upon which he can drill for oil.  He finds a certain property that he gains control over.  There is a church there and Eli Sunday (Paul Dano), a local preacher and a self-proclaimed faith healer, comes into conflict with Plainview.

Plainview also had found a baby deserted at one of the sites and he raises him as his son. H.W. (Dillon Freasier).  This relationship develops over time, but there is always a question how much Daniel actually cares about the boy.

In fact, there are few people that Daniel care about at all.  He can only go so far dealing with anyone.  You see this man going more and more into the realms of madness and brokenness.  By the end of the film, Daniel has gone too a place where he is not going to come back from.

The movie is very dark with some cruelty, especially from the main character, but it is fascinating how the film takes that character an systematically tears him down and creates someone who is just a horrid, horrid human being.

Great performances throughout but especially from Daniel Day-Lewis and Paul Dano.  They completely engage with these people and embody them despite them both being so unlikable.

Writer-director Paul Thomas Anderson creates a wholly original film that is something unlike any film that you have seen.  Some of the scenes are weird and out there where as others fit nicely into the narrative.  It truly is a piece of art.

vintage

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