Hailed by critics as the greatest film of the decade and one of the best performances by Daniel Day-Lewis, here is my take on this astonishing film.
Directed by Paul Thomas Anderson (Boogie Nights, Magnolia), this is set in the early 20th Century, where a mineral prospector, Daniel Plainview (Daniel Day-Lewis) discovers oil and makes a drilling company. This story is about his quest for wealth and the ruthless actions he takes in order to gain it.
This film is beautifully directed by Paul Thomas Anderson who incorporates visionary prowess and impeccable cinematography to make this a gem of a movie. His use of big, domineering shots of the Texan deserts are first class. The photography in the film is immense. It’s beautiful. He is confident and assured in making this film a stand out for 2007. But the performance of Daniel Day-Lewis cannot be withheld.
Daniel Plainview is an ugly character. His ruthless quest for domination causes hate from others. Daniel Day-Lewis does a fine job, using his experience in films such as Gangs of New York to conjure up this, quite frankly, repulsive character. He loathes his adopted son, H.W (Dillon Freasier) after he becomes deaf and treats him quite badly. He is constantly pestered by Eli Sunday (Paul Dano), a local missionary, and in one powerful scene, he is humiliated by Eli Sunday into making him declare his faith to God. In this film, Day-Lewis gives the performance of the decade as this truly intense character.
Paul Thomas Anderson is a remarkable filmmaker, who can direct superb films from different genres. He uses the isolation of the Texan desert to give us this drama into the mind of this oilman. It unfolds into a masterpiece that is an example of divine filmmaking. This spectacle of a film changes the ideals of filmmaking. This is one of my favorite pieces of film and it is a credit to watch, not only the direction or the cinematography but the excellent acting by Day-Lewis.
I’ll gladly recommend this film to movie lovers as it is a work of art in my opinion. Fans of Paul Thomas Anderson will be delighted by this film. It is an angry film, a film that boils over the top with rage, the final 20 minutes are particularly intense as Daniel Plainview comes, seeking for revenge. A very intense, powerful film that will leave you feeling speechless. This is the film of the decade. ‘I’m finished’.