Saturday, February 23, 2008

There Will Be Blood - My Review

Well, I finally saw it tonight with the girlfriend.

First impressions while they are still fresh and unencumbered by analysis:

Daniel Day-Lewis and Paul Dano were absolutely fucking brilliant! Out of the park, power house performances.

The whole thing with Daniel's son, H.W.?

I thought it added very little to the movie. Not a whole lot of point to that character. You could have yanked him out of the movie entirely. Everything that character was supposed to reveal about Daniel could have been accomplished without H.W.

The movie as a whole? It was way too slow and it went on for way too long. I think the same story could have been told much more effectively with quicker pacing and a shorter runtime.

Daniel Plainview was a voracious character with an insatiable appetite. He was like a shark and he never stopped eating. The pacing of the movie should have conveyed that same relentlessness. It didn't.

It was almost like Paul Thomas Anderson and Daniel Day-Lewis came up with the character of Daniel Plainview first and then set out to build a story around him. If so, they shot their creative wad with Plainview and the story was a lot of limp dicked, post coital, wet humping.

Guess there's not much point to adding a "no homo" here, is there?

For me, the best parts of the movie were the realistic depictions of just how primitive and dangerous drilling for oil was in the early days and what a tough sonofabitch you had to be.

Know what? It hasn't changed all that much. Still one of the most dangerous jobs on earth.

If you are a tree hugger who weeps at pictures of penguins and seagulls covered in oil, go easy on the popcorn. The shots of them lifting oil out of the wells in open buckets and dumping it into open pits in the ground will probably induce projectile vomiting for you.

The ending? Meh. I had heard it was a shocker. So I was expecting something shocking. It just wasn't that much of a shocker to me. Actually seemed almost inevitable, given everything that led up to it.

Glad I saw it. I probably owe the girlfriend some flowers for making her sit through it.

I'd almost recommend waiting until it comes out on DVD and watch it at just the first arrow of fast forward.

That should be just about right.

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