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A few reasons why I am excited to see Phantom Thread
In less than an hour I will be sitting in what I can only assume will be a mostly empty theater to see Phantom Thread. I am so excited that I wanted to just jot down some of my thoughts and expectations before heading out, and of course share them with all of you.
Reason Number 1: Paul Thomas Anderson
There are a good deal of directors that I admire, Scorsese, Kubrick and Tarantino just to name a few of my favorites. While all of these dudes are cinematic geniuses, they each seem to be quite strange individuals, like it would be tough to have a conversation with any of them(especially Kubrick) without being railroaded by decades of movie knowledge. In my opinion Paul Thomas Anderson is as much a genius as anyone making movies today, but there is something different about him, he seems like a normal guy.
This alone does not excite me about Phantom Thread but P.T. is a guy who is incredibly easy to like and also happens to make some of the best movies of his generation. He has some innate ability to tell weird stories that are incredibly well populated with deeper meaning and cinematic brilliance. You never know what you are going to exactly get but you know that it is almost always awe inspiring.
Reason Number 2: Daniel Day-Lewis and his impending retirement
There are not too many things in this world that are universally agreed upon. Puppies are awesome, Nickleback sucks and Daniel Day-Lewis is the greatest living actor. Not only does he go full on into his roles(He famously only used his left foot during the filming of My Left Foot, spent six months living off the land to prepare for Last of the Mohicans and spend a year apprenticing for a butcher to play "Bill the Butcher" in Gangs of New York.) and knowing that this may be his last adds some intrigue.
If this really will be his last film, I feel obligated to pay to see this one. I already know that he will be tremendous in the role but this being his last will really put something extra special onto this one.
Reason Number 3: There Will Be Blood and Daniel Plainview
There Will Be Blood was one of the first movies that I saw that really got me thinking about the craft of film making. I had no preconceived notions about the director or the star at that point, and honestly no idea what made the movie so good, I just knew something special was going on.
I revisited what some people believe to be the best movie of the current millennium, and fell in love with the movie all over again. There are times where a movie will make me tear up, not from the events or the characters....but just because the movie is so good. I get overcome with the sheer weight and accomplishment of some movies and There Will Be Blood was a real tear jerker for me.
There are so many great things about that movie, the score, the cinematography, the color, the writing, the characters and the plot, while slow moving and seemingly pointless at times comes together so beautifully and when you take a few minutes to think it all over or even re watch it gets even better.
Better than all of the previously mentioned items, There Will Be Blood is spectacularly directed by none other than Paul Thomas Anderson, and sports what I believe to be one of the top all time performances from an actor (right next to F. Murray Abraham in Amadeus and Tom Cruise in Magnolia, another Paul Thomas Anderson masterpiece.) From Mr. Daniel Day-Lewis.
Reason Number 4. It looks crazy boring
This may seem like a dig at first glance, but let me explain. This movie not only seems like a total passion project for these two cinematic monsters, it also looks like they got to do it the way they wanted. P.T. has always been pretty good about getting final cut on his movies ever since Hard Eight, and while that gave us a 3 hour cut of Magnolia it also gives us the frog scene and the fantastic ending of There Will Be Blood.
The trailer for Phantom Thread at least looks like Anderson got to make the movie he wanted without having to appease production companies, studios and yes, even the viewer. Sometimes it is better to be at the will of a director rather than being able to easily understand a movie in the moment, and there are few that do this better than Paul Thomas Anderson. What makes his movies so great is that he never talks down to the audience or dumbs his movies down, it is far better to think about a movie a bit to come to an understanding rather than being told exactly what to think about it.
That will just about do it. I'm already late for this movie so no time to proof read or even wait for hubpages to approve it but I will see you all again in a few days with a full review!