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Added by johanlefourbe on 4 Jul 2019 10:48
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A Complete Review of Paul Thomas Anderson's work

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People who added this item 32 Average listal rating (28 ratings) 7.8 IMDB Rating 7.7
Anima (2019)


Cast : Thom Yorke

What was it about?
In a short musical film directed by Paul Thomas Anderson, Thom Yorke of Radiohead scores and stars in a mind-bending visual piece. Best played loud.

My two cents:
To be honest, I really had no idea what to expect from this short movie but, of course, since I'm a huge fan of Paul Thomas Anderson, I was really eager to check it out. Apparently, it was commissioned by Thom Yorke to promote his new album of the same name. Anyway, first of all, I know that Netflix gets sometimes a bad rep but I think it's pretty awesome that they sponsor this kind of projects. However, was the damned thing really so amazing after all? To be honest, not really. I mean, it was visually interesting but I never thought it was anything mind-blowing. Concerning the music, I have to admit that I'm not really knowledgeable about Radiohead and Thom Yorke's work but, just like the visuals, I thought it was not bad but nothing really impressive. I also wonder if it was such a good idea to have also Thom Yorke playing the 'main' character. Still, only because the damned thing was so original, it gets some extra few points from me and it is definitely worth a look.

My rating: 07/10
johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 321 Average listal rating (212 ratings) 7.6 IMDB Rating 7.5


Cast : Daniel Day-Lewis

What was it about?
Set in 1950s London, Reynolds Woodcock is a renowned dressmaker whose fastidious life is disrupted by a young, strong-willed woman, Alma, who becomes his muse and lover.

My two cents:
Well, even though I really liked it, pretty much like Anderson's 2 previous directing efforts, it didn't really blow me away to be honest. I mean, from a technical point of view, it was quite mesmerising, every shot was gorgeous, the soundtrack perfectly set the mood and, as usual, Daniel Day-Lewis was just amazing and completely disappeared in this character. Eventually, what bothered me with this movie was this love story which was in my opinion completely unromantic. I mean, you can say whatever you want about this guy but, at least, he was honest as he didn't try to fool anyone about his qualities and shortcomings. On the other hand, I won't blame Vicky Krieps who gave a strong performance but it was just rather sad to see her character trying to force this man to become someone else and, in the process, she also pushed them to stay together when their relationship had obviously run its course. Of course, you might argue that she was just completely fanatic as he was, albeit in a different area, but remains the question, what was her added value in his life and in this couple? Not much, as far as I was concerned. Anyway, even if it didn't completely blow me away, it was still another solid directing effort from Anderson and another powerhouse performance from Day-Lewis.

My rating: 07/10

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johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 544 Average listal rating (308 ratings) 6.9 IMDB Rating 6.7


Cast : Joaquin Phoenix, Katherine Waterston, Josh Brolin, Eric Roberts, Maya Rudolph, Benicio Del Toro, Jena Malone, Owen Wilson, Reese Witherspoon, Martin Short

What was it about?
In 1970, drug-fueled Los Angeles private investigator Larry "Doc" Sportello investigates the disappearance of a former girlfriend.

My two cents:
Usually, Paul Thomas Anderson is not what you could call a quick director. Indeed, it took him 5 long years after 'Punch-Drunk Love' to come up with 'There Will Be Blood' and then 5 more years before he came up with 'The Master' so I was really glad that his following directing effort was coming up relatively fast. Eventually, this flick didn't get much love though and, indeed, I have to admit it, I wasn't exactly blown away by the whole thing. I mean, I already had a difficult time with 'The Master' because I thought it was a little bit murky but it was nothing compared to this movie. Indeed, I think I understood maybe 50% of it. Basically, there were so many characters, all more or less connected with each other but their connections were barely explained and none of them had some straight dialogues, always some rather obscure riddles. I don't know, maybe it works better with the book but, somehow, I doubt it. And, yet, there is no denying that the directing was really solid and, once again, Joaquin Phoenix showed that he is one of the best actors at work nowadays. Above all, I had never seen anything like this before, a rather typical film noir but set in the 70's with some completely stoned characters.

My rating: 07/10

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johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 997 Average listal rating (608 ratings) 7.1 IMDB Rating 7.2
The Master (2012)


Cast : Joaquin Phoenix, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Amy Adams, Rami Malek, Laura Dern

What was it about?
A Naval veteran arrives home from war unsettled and uncertain of his future - until he is tantalized by The Cause and its charismatic leader.

My two cents:
Ever since I saw 'Boogie Nights', I have been faithfully following Paul Thomas Anderson's work. This time again, we had to wait 5 long years to see his new directing effort so my expectations were sky high and this movie was one of my top priorities in 2012. Unfortunately, it didn't live up to those expectations. I mean, it was really good, there were even some really brilliant moments but it was never truly amazing. In my opinion, the main issue was with the writing. Indeed, even though the two main characters were fascinating, the story didn't work very well and the whole thing was sometimes pretty random. I also had a hard time to make up the motivations of all the characters which were often acting pretty randomly as well. Still, there was some great stuff here. Indeed, the directing was really good with some awesome shots and like I said before, the two main characters were just fascinating with some great performances by Joaquin Phoenix and Philip Seymour Hoffman. Thank God Phoenix stopped with this retirement nonsense and got back in the game, it is such a fine actor and he gave here one of his best performances.

My rating: 07/10

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johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 2742 Average listal rating (1717 ratings) 8.1 IMDB Rating 8.2


Cast : Daniel Day-Lewis, Paul Dano

What was it about?
A story of family, religion, hatred, oil and madness, focusing on a turn-of-the-century prospector in the early days of the business.

My two cents:
2007 was an exceptional year for the movies and many would argue that it was even one of the best years ever. Eventually, among the seemingly endless of amazing movies that had been released during that year, two contenders rose above the rest, this movie and 'No Country for old men'. Well, even 'No Country for old men' did slightly more credit, as far as I was concerned, I vastly preferred this amazing movie. In my opinion, the classic delivered by the Coen brothers' was a fine picture but this flick went way deeper and was more fascinating in my opinion. Anyway, Paul Thomas Anderson showed us again that he is one of the most inspired directors at work at the time and still nowadays. Working with one of the best actors ever, Daniel Day-Lewis, they created a great masterpiece together. Day-Lewis provided one hell of a one-man show being in almost every single scene for almost 3 hours long. However, Paul Dano shouldn't be forgotten as he gave an impressive performance as well. Furthermore, The story was really mesmerizing, probably the best one tackled by Paul-Thomas Anderson so far.

My rating: 09/10

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johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 1450 Average listal rating (911 ratings) 6.9 IMDB Rating 7.3


Cast : Adam Sandler, Emily Watson, Luis Guzmán, Philip Seymour Hoffman

What was it about?
A psychologically troubled novelty supplier is nudged towards a romance with an English woman, all the while being extorted by a phone-sex line run by a crooked mattress salesman, and purchasing stunning amounts of pudding.

My two cents:
Honestly, it has been a while since I have seen this flick and I should definitely re-watch it whenever I have the opportunity. Anyway, I remember very well when it was released, back then, I was expecting a lot from this movie. Not because of Sandler (by now, I have seen most of his movies and his whole gimmick is pretty lame in my opinion) but because it was directed by Paul Thomas Anderson, probably one of the most interesting directors around nowadays. Unfortunately, I have to admit that I was kind of disappointed by the whole thing. I mean, it was not bad, far from it, and it was just way better than everything else Adam Sandler had done at the time but I still had a hard time to connect with the characters and what they were going through. The funniest part is that, with this movie, Adam Sandler finally tried something else, something more challenging, more interesting and what was his reward? The movie completely tanked at the box-office... Anyway, even though I wasn’t really blown away by the whole thing, it was a still a decent flick, easily one of the best starring Adam Sandler.

My rating: 06/10

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johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 2794 Average listal rating (1653 ratings) 7.6 IMDB Rating 8
Magnolia (1999)


Cast : Tom Cruise, Philip Baker Hall, Thomas Jane, William H. Macy, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Jason Robards, Julianne Moore, John C. Reilly, Alfred Molina, Felicity Huffman, Luis Guzmán, Orlando Jones

What was it about?
An epic mosaic of interrelated characters in search of love, forgiveness, and meaning in the San Fernando Valley.

My two cents:
Well, even though ‘Boogie Nights’ had made quite an impression at the time, it was with his 3rd directing effort that Paul Thomas Anderson really made his breakthrough. Personally, I think he is one of the best directors at work nowadays and this might be his best movie so far but I would have to rewatch ‘There Will Be Blood ’ to make up my mind for good. Basically, ‘There Will Be Blood’ is indeed a great flick but it mostly deals only with one character whereas this movie deals with a whole bunch of people played by an impressive cast. This movie was also responsible of making the hyperlink gimmick so popular (several loose story lines are intertwined and usually ends up together) and it must be the best movie in this genre. As a result, it provided some really interesting characters and stories, some strong directing and all the actors involved gave some very good performances. Indeed, even though Tom Cruise might be insane, he definitely can act and when he leaves his comfort zone, he can be pretty amazing as he displayed in this movie.

My rating: 09/10

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johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 1986 Average listal rating (1223 ratings) 7.5 IMDB Rating 7.9
Boogie Nights (1997)


Cast : Mark Wahlberg, Burt Reynolds, Julianne Moore, John C. Reilly, Don Cheadle, Heather Graham, William H. Macy, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Thomas Jane, Philip Baker Hall, Alfred Molina, Luis Guzmán

What was it about?
The story of a young man's adventures in the California pornography industry of the late 1970s and early 1980s.

My two cents:
Before ‘Magnolia’ and ‘There Will Be Blood’, it was with this movie that Paul Thomas Anderson started to get some deserved attention. In fact, even though his following directing efforts are usually better regarded than this movie, I still really love this movie. To be honest, before watching the damned thing, I had no idea what to expect from this flick and, back then, I went to see it at the time in the movie theatre because it seemed to be fun. Eventually, it turned out to be indeed a fun movie but also much more than that as well. Indeed, it was in fact way better than I expected and, out of a topic which has produced so many lame comedies, Anderson managed to make made a really entertaining but also quite fascinating feature. I was also really impressed by the great cast involved, especially by Mark Wahlberg. Indeed, he would eventually get his breakthrough thanks to this movie and it is a real shame that he doesn’t make such movies anymore. Anyway, even though it tends to be overlooked nowadays, I really loved the damned thing.

My rating: 08/10

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johanlefourbe's rating:
People who added this item 387 Average listal rating (235 ratings) 7.2 IMDB Rating 7.2


Cast : Philip Baker Hall, John C. Reilly, Gwyneth Paltrow, Samuel L. Jackson, Philip Seymour Hoffman

What was it about?
Professional gambler Sydney teaches John the tricks of the trade. John does well until he falls for cocktail waitress Clementine.

My two cents:
Apparently, this directing debut was not exactly a pleasant experience for Anderson as he had not much control over it (something that would change from his next movie) and he had to fight really hard to make sure that it wasn’t completely butchered before it was released. Anyway, even if it wasn’t one of his best movies, I still turned out to be a pretty decent watch. Indeed, in spite of a very limited budget, the whole thing was visually pretty neat and there were still some really neat shots which was quite impressive since it was a directing debut. Instead of the usual big stars, the cast was composed of some very good character actors and they all delivered some really strong performances. I must say I was a little bit underwhelmed by the plot or the lack of it but the version I saw was rather short (about 95 minutes) and a longer director's cut might be a better watch. Eventually, even though it is a rather obscure feature, it was pretty good and it is definitely worth a look, especially if you are interested in PT Anderson’s work.

My rating: 07/10

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johanlefourbe's rating:

Since I have finally managed to watch all the movies directed by Paul Thomas Anderson, I thought I should make one of these lists for this guy as well.

Enjoy!


Added to

38 votes
A Complete Review of various directors' s work (59 lists)
list by johanlefourbe
Published 8 years ago 8 comments



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