The film has 5 different plots, and 8 different main characters. Dealing with a large variety of themes and stories, Magnolia manages to take us deep into the characters and their inner crisis through deep introspection, which works due to the outstanding acting from every single role and the inspired directing of Anderson, who takes us through this tragic journey in almost lyrical manner that pays off beautifully.
This is my personal favorite film of all time and each time I see it I get something more out of it.
So do yourself a favor and give it a try. All of Andersons movies are outstanding, but Magnolia is more than that.
The rain of fogs has a touch of cosmic mystery both awesome and terrifying, but the storm of frogs changes the mental and physical reality of people endured in the storm. Some decks are reshuffled and given another chance to play it right; some are wiped away, while some remain the same. However, the movie is ultimately optimistic in the power of human love and forgiveness in making life meaningful and endurable. The divine power in this film is not the cuddling micro-manager of sweetness, but a stern, inscrutable force giving human the full lot of freewill, redeemed only the the potentiality of love and forgiveness. It is up to us to make heaven or hell in our own lives; we don't need hereafter to know where we live in the Dantesque Comedy here on earth. The Freewill reigned supreme in those cruel old men who inflicted so much damage to their children. That is true Freewill, unadulterated by wishful-thinkings. That is the darkness of human souls. The next generation may continue, given the inheritance of their anger and pain, to inflict new pain upon their own children. Cruise's character is the manifestation of burying deep suffering through inflicting suffering. However is also reign supreme in the act of love and compassion of hospice nurse, the policeman, and the trophy wife played by Moore.
Really the best movie that has been out in the last 15 years.
A movie overly reliant on its great performances that demands a lot from the viewer even when it doesnt give enough for the viewer to really care for the deeper meaning of these interesting but strangely paced and overly complicated plots that while necesary can easily be unrewarding by its conclusion.