Sunday, March 23, 2008

There will be blood - Movie Review

Cast: Daniel Day Lewis (Daniel Plainview), Paul Dano (Paul/Eli Sunday), Dillion Freasier (HW Plainview)
Direction: Paul Anderson
Music: Jonny Greenwood

I am writing a review after a long time, but it is for one of the most powerful films of recent times. The story line is pretty simple, Daniel Plainview is a oil prospector, one that has no scruples and will do anything to get his way and to make money. During his time to Boston, he crosses paths with Eli Sunday a young priest. The conflict between oil & the church in early America. Thats the plot, the simplicity (or monstrosity) of the characters is what holds the audience.

A silver miner falls in his mine and breaks his leg and goes on to discover oil. The mind of the man who is after something valuable is almost dead to all emotions, the dry surroundings accentuate this feeling of anguish. Daniel Plainview takes up an orphan H.W and inspite of his unique way of handling the kid, H.W is Daniel's last connection to humanity. (When the son finally leaves him, Daniel breaks down totally, and after his final showdown with Eli, says "i am finished") . Eli is the opposite, he knows the lands resources and his harvest, his pursuit is faith. His method of control of the minds is more potent than that of Daniel, the grip of faith over logic. Over the period of movie, he proves that he is after the same wealth that Daniel is after and equally corrupt.

The movie is in a way built around Greenwoods' music. Its almost as if the director has shot many of the scenes to match the songs. The music is dark, edgy and takes you to the barren lands of the black gold, where men built destinies at the cost of themselves. The movie is quite detailed, but the edginess of the visuals, the stunning usage of the camera work and the right usage of dialogue make you drown yourself in the imagery.

Danial Day Lewis plays the man after his own soul to the perfect T. From his days of mining, to his shock/disbelief/pain when H.W goes deaf, and his weakness/realization/anger when he finds out about his 'imposter' brother are a masterclass in acting. His fury at Eli (over paul, did paul exist is something which I did not get) at the well and during the final act is absolute genius.

One of the best of all time. 4.5/5


Monkey said...

finally got to see the infamous There Will Be Blood... Daniel-Day Lewis' performance was top-notch. He takes well to the overbearing, violent father-figure role -- he also did this in Gangs of New York.

Wally said...

@ Patrick: Yup, but Gangs... was more raw agression, but here the aggression is more understated.