There Will Be Blood – Crude Awakening

There Will Be Blood     A

Starring Daniel Day Lewis, Paul Dano, and Ciaran Hinds
Directed by Paul Thomas Anderson (Boogie Nights)
Rated R for some violence
Appropriate for ages 17+

The Story:  Loosely based on the novel Oil! by Upton Sinclair, Blood follows the life of a successful oil man (Lewis), and the corruption that falls upon him once he becomes wealthy.  Troubled by his deaf son and the local preacher (Dano) that won’t stay off his back, he allows the money to cause him to lose his mind.

The Good: Daniel Day Lewis is the big winner here.  His performance is absolutely legendary and he should be a sure thing for the Best Actor Oscar this year. 

Aside from Lewis though, this is still a great film.  Written and directed by P.T. Anderson, the pic is a far cry from his other classics like Boogie Nights, Magnolia, and Punch Drunk Love.  The film looks like a Western, but with the haunting score written by Radiohead’s Jonny Greenwood, it feels almost like an epic horror pic.  It’s a different kind of movie experience that will grow on you long after you leave the theater. 

The Bad: While he has proven himself to be a great actor elsewhere, I wasn’t impressed with the selection of Paul Dano as the annoying preacher.  I know what Anderson was going for, but the film could have been even stronger with a more appropriate actor in the role.

I must also warn that the ending is very bleak and unresolved.  It’s the kind of ending that will ruin the movie for many an audience member.  

The Summary: While the production is impressive, it’s Daniel Day Lewis that makes this a memorable motion picture.