from COLCHESTER, CT
Reviewed on 3/27/2015...
We saw this ugly little movie on the wide screen when it came out and could not figure out why it got good reviews overall.
So I watched it again yesterday and today on dvd and struggled to get through it.
Good acting and nice photography, but that's not enough.
Just can't recommend it.
1 of 2 member(s) found this review helpful.
(mde) from SPOKANE VLY, WA
Reviewed on 2/10/2014...
This R rated film has some of the best actors in the business but I would rate it RR for nudity, language and other overly disgusting adult situations.
2 of 3 member(s) found this review helpful.
(TD) from ANKENY, IA
Reviewed on 2/9/2014...
Director Paul Thomas Anderson has a striking history at molding films that creep into the human psyche and resonate, for better or for worse. Anderson's The Master dives into Freddie Quell's (Phoenix) PTSD-riddled life back home. Amid his misadventures, he crosses paths with The Master, Lancaster Dodd (Hoffman) and his covenant of loyal believers. What ensues is a mental struggle between both male leads both among each other as well as within themselves. The performances by Hoffman and Phoenix are nothing short of captivating. Hoffman puts on a clinic (literally and figuratively) with his commanding prose while Phoenix delivers a very convincing role. Unfortunately for the leads, this is by and far the best aspect about this film. The character arc is very lacking and seems to resemble a troubled transmission; it sometimes shifts, sometimes regresses, and other times cannot make it out of first gear at all. The overall absence of any real development stunts what could have been a very dynamic film. Some may argue there is/isn't a real plot. I lie in the middle and maintain that while the writers' gave the film an interesting and workable story-line, the execution did not effectively deliver. There were a couple other positives, however, with the splendid camera work, use of cinematography, and apt use of mise en scene. In the end, the two working cogs that were the bravado performances of the two spectacular male leads could not support a machine whose other major systems were either malfunctioning or stuck in technical sludge.
2 of 2 member(s) found this review helpful.