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Saturday, September 22, 2012

Sean Kelly

My Thoughts on The Master

The Master

After making, what I consider to be his masterpiece, There Will Be Blood, Paul Thomas Anderson returns with The Master.  The film focuses on a drifter named Freddie Quell (Joaquin Phoenix), who comes across a man named Lancaster Dodd (Philip Seymour Hoffman).  Dodd is the founder of a movement called “The Cause,” which some may describe as being a cult. The film follow Quell his period as a follower of Dodd’s teachings.

It was been reported that The Master is a swipe at L. Ron Hubbard and the Church of Scientology.  Since I don’t know that much about Hubbard, I wasn’t able to notice the parallels within the film.  That said, I am somewhat knowledgeable of cults and I was definitely able to notice the cultish nature of Dodd’s movement, which is described at one point as something that he makes up as he goes along.  However, I interpreted the film as being not necessarily about the cult, but more about the fact that human beings are unable to “live” without having some sort of “master” to guide them along.

Like I said before, I consider There Will Be Blood to be Paul Thomas Anderson’s masterpiece.  I also liked The Master, but I was not blown away by it – storywise at least.  However, from a technical standpoint, the film is just stunning.  The Master was filmed and projected in 70mm and the cinematography was very visually spectacular.  I thought that the 70mm presentation gave a much more high definition image than any digital projection.  I am definitely happy that there are some, who still try to use film to its fullest.  I highly recommend checking out the 70mm presentation if you can.

Overall, I will say that The Master was a decent film, though it doesn’t come close to topping the masterpiece that was There Will Be Blood.

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Sean Kelly

About Sean Kelly -

Sean Patrick Kelly is a self-described ├╝ber-geek, who has been an avid film lover for all his life. He graduated from York University in 2010 with an honours B.A. in Cinema and Media Studies and he likes to believe he knows what he’s talking about when he writes about film (despite occasionally going on pointless rants).