Last week, the teaser trailer for Paul Thomas Anderson's new film The Master was released online. It's kind of great.
Though it doesn't seem it, Anderson's last movie, the beautifully unsettling There Will Be Blood, is almost five-years-old. With its singularity of vision and expansiveness of ambition that film seemed destined to be remembered as Anderson's masterpiece. After watching the trailer for The Master, it's hard not to call that destiny into question.
Here's what we know so far. The Master is about a charismatic intellectual played by Philip Seymour Hoffman who starts his own religion after World War II. Joaquin Phoenix co-stars as a wayward sailor who joins the sect, and man oh man does it look like he's swinging for the fences with this performance. Early drafts of the script courted some controversy for their critiques of L. Ron Hubbard and scientology, though the version that was shot reportedly tones down that element in favor of a greater focus on Hoffman and Phoenix's relationship. Whether or not that's true remains to be seen, but Anderson excels at portraying the fractious bonds that develop between lost souls so color us excited either way.
For those of you unfamiliar with Paul Thomas Anderson's work, now is as good a time as any to watch some of his stuff and become full fledged film geeks. The aforementioned There Will Be Blood is a terrific place to start, but his other features Punch-Drunk Love, Magnolia, Boogie Nights, and Hard Eight are all great as well. Check them out!
Are you Masterminds excited for The Master?