There Will Be Blood - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

There Will Be Blood Reviews

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June 17, 2018
Amazing. Two days in a row, and two days of incredible movies that portray humans at their most raw. Still afflicted with Oscar fever, I followed up my viewing of The Reader with There Will Be Blood, which won Daniel Day-Lewis an Oscar for Best Actor last year.

Gritty, cold and, at times, cruel, this period piece set in the late 1800s through the Great Depression, There Will Be Blood is, at its core, about the business of...well, business, versus the business of salvation. Neither are proven to be better, or worse, as the case may be, than the other except for maybe, in the end, Daniel Day-Lewis' character is shown to be more exact in his evil, while his moral counterpart, Eli, is shown to be naive in his selfishness.

Paul Thomas Anderson continues his track record of unique and heavily character-driven films, in the vein of Boogie Nights, Magnolia and Punch-Drunk Love. As usual, his characters are immensely flawed and capable of the most atrocious of actions. He's quickly becoming a master of creating characters who actually do what only our darkest moments think of doing, if then.

As usual, Daniel Day-Lewis is outstanding in his role, commanding immense strength on the screen. The Oscar was well-deserved.

My only real criticism of the film is that the portrayal of Eli's religious con-man being made into the weak, whiny hypocrite that he becomes, comes across more as a personal indictment of Anderson's rather than an necessary element of the movie, specifically Eli's senseless murder in the end. Unlike the seemingly objectivity of The Reader, There Will Be Blood shamelessly overexaggerates the stupidity of the congregation (and, believe me, I cannot believe I'm saying that since I generally believe Christianity to be silly). If Eli is proven to be a great fool, what then of the congregation who put such faith in him? It rubbed me the wrong way, but didn't make me enjoy the film less. Perhaps portraying Daniel as an empty, soul-less man is meant to counter the naivete of his enemy.
June 11, 2018
I'm not sure what this is about, I mean what it's really about, but it's got all the trappings of an American Epic about an oilman who builds a fortune through land acquisition and the extraction of oil out of the California soil. His relationship with his 'son' is at times loving, at times fraught and he spars with a religious revivalist with a congregation in the nearby town. The story is compelling and the man versus nature theme is perfectly suited to its setting.
May 31, 2018
I love character pieces of sociopaths, such as Nightcrawler and Taxi Driver. This film is another great character piece on a man with questionable scruples.
May 30, 2018
An oil empire rises among the fallen.

Director Paul Thomas Anderson crafts a harrowing tale of an oil baron building his life. It is massive in scope, but never forgets its heart. You get to watch a man manipulate, con, and steamroll his way to success. It is a character study of Daniel Plainview as much as it is an epic on the rise of capitalism. You bear witness to a father attempting to raise a boy, while prioritizing his business. There Will Be Blood is truly a monster. It's lengthy run time feels quite slow as I suspect most viewers will find its molasses pace to be too crawling. I assure you however, the pay off is well worth the wait. It is a brilliant story told in an incredible way.

Paul Thomas Anderson finds every interesting angle to showcase the acting performances, bleak environment, and dismal prospects. You will be astonished by There Will Be Blood's sights. I think the narrative alone is worth the price of admission. Anderson delivers a compelling tale based on Upton Sinclair's "Oil!"

Although, Anderson could edit down his films more, he gives you everything. The elongated shots, one takes, panning shots, and clever sequences all work to keep you enthralled to the madness on screen.

As I mentioned, the acting is top tier in There Will Be Blood. Daniel Day-Lewis and Paul Dano play the most cruel, manipulative, self-absorbed monsters in cinema history. They portray men that care not for others and they play it beautifully. All their subtle movements and eye work reveal their deeper convictions. These are what powerhouse performances look like.

Musically, this movie lavishes itself in deep pondering silence. It is broken up by rushing themes that spark the imagination as to the sounds of industrialization. The score to There Will Be Blood is equally gripping and terrifying. The pounding sounds herein mirror the march of progress. From the slow thudding pulses of noise to the hectic insanity of big business. Composer Jonny Greenwood delivers a wholly original composition for you. I found it flows over you to push you into the air like one of Plainview's oil geysers.

I recommend There Will Be Blood for anyone that can stand weighty movies in run time and themes. There is a great story here if only Anderson had cut it down some. I still enjoyed the film and found it fascinating all the while. Give it a chance if you can stomach the blood promised in the title.
½ May 21, 2018
Uhg... I watched this because it was supposed to be a good movie. Lewis is definitely a decent actor, but I didn't sign on to have him grind his teeth for 2.5 hours. And the constant 'violins to build tension' soundtrack ALL THE TIME was SUPER annoying.
'There Will Be Blood' was short on blood, and long on annoying characters and dragged out sequences. You KNEW he was going to smoke that little Wil Wheaton-wanna-be, it just took two hours to do it! And there was something about his not-son that was super important to the movie, but for the life of me I have no idea what that was. OMG! You abandoned your not-son??? THAT was the worst sin ever! Not the killing. And he didn't abandon him, he sent him... ah never mind.
May 15, 2018
Immersive cinematography and music that creates an uneasy feeling, even when the (seemingly) most insignificant of things happen.
½ May 2, 2018
Strengths: Any conversation about this film must start with Daniel Day-Lewis. He plays the lead, Daniel Plainview, and gives one of the best performances of his entire career. When you think about how storied his time as an actor has been, you understand what that kind of praise means. He completely becomes Plainview to the point where you almost forget he's acting. He totally lacks empathy and or any kind of likable qualities, yet the performance is so good, he works as a protagonist. Paul Thomas Anderson does a wonderful job showcasing capitalism in this era and crafting an intense feature film. The cinematography is top notch. There's also some strong performances outside of DDL that people may overlook. Paul Dano (Paul and Eli Sunday) pulls double duty and handles both roles with care, while Kevin J. O'Connor (Henry) is strong as Plainview's supposed half-brother.

Weaknesses: One thing that usually makes a film work is a character arc. We want to go on a journey with our character where they grow from start to finish. Plainview gets more wealthy and greedy as time goes on, but doesn't ever seem to learn anything. He drives everyone away, including his son. The film ends on a weird note. Daniel murders Eli in his bowling alley, clearly a wealthy man now, and that's it. It doesn't feel like a complete film, despite running at a very long 158 minutes.

Overall: It's widely considered to be some sort of masterpiece, but I just didn't see that. It's very good. It just seems to lack the kind of character development that classics should have. Plainview seems to have one motivation and that's it. The ending is also weak. However, it's a must-see movie purely for Daniel Day-Lewis. He is scary good in this role and it needs to be experienced.
April 28, 2018
Not quite the masterpiece everyone makes it out to be, but still very good.
April 21, 2018
Great acting by Daniel Day Lewis. But I'm not sure what the story was about. Why is he so angry? Why does he occasionally kill random people? Didn't really get the point here. I liked the historical aspects. Soundtrack was very good too.
Mark H.
Super Reviewer
April 18, 2018
A masterpiece. This film is about as close to a perfect film as I have ever seen. So focused. So absolutely sure-footed. Paul Thomas Anderson knows from the opening shots to the incredible closing scene precisely where this movie is going. Daniel Day-Lewis is not playing Daniel Plainview. He IS him. Day-Lewis ceases to exist inside this uber-intense, driven, pathologically greedy capitalist. Plainview exists solely to obtain wealth. But not just wealth, he wants to destroy anyone who poses even the slightest obstacle to his plans. He is sinister, calculating and lacks almost any semblance of kindness or love. He uses people, even his "son," an orphan who's father died working for Plainview. He is patient, willing to work for years to build his empire. His purpose is merely to achieve enough wealth to build a mansion and live alone. This movie is almost unbearably intense at times. One of the best depictions of what unbridled capitalism looks like, set during the oil boom of the early 1900's. By 1920's, Plainview is a millionaire many times over, living in a huge, sprawling mansion that he treats recklessly (a scene depicts him shooting various objects inside an ornate hall with a gun). He is aging, crippled from his early fall down a mine shaft, and an alcoholic. This movie is probably one of the top 10 movies ever made. Every scene feels right.
½ April 15, 2018
My second watch. Maybe long at parts, but that's all PTA. A little bit of everything including comedy and top soundtrack.
April 15, 2018
Some call this film boring and arbitrary, but I think this slow-burning yet thrilling epic is a masterpiece. The film features DDL's best performance, in my opinion, complex characters, and beautiful cinematography. Some
may find Daniel Plainview's actions and choices of words confusing, but you just have to get inside his head, and Paul Thomas Anderson does a very good job at letting the audience do just that. Not to mention a wonderful score by Jonny Greenwood.
March 11, 2018
Paul Thomas Anderson leaves nothins to chance to make 'There Will Be Blood' a masterpiece, and, at our greatest astonishment, he succeeds.
½ March 11, 2018
A dark and Fascinating movie
March 8, 2018
There Will be Blood is a masterpiece of craft. Director Paul Thomas Anderson's (PTA) dark tale of oil, greed and capitalism is vividly captured on screen. This sprawling epic excels the raw madness in the early days of business tycoons. Actor Daniel Day-Lewis has never been better, in his performance of a lifetime as a turn-of-the-century prospector named Daniel Plainview. Blood and oil are running rapidly through Plainview's veins as he continues to grow his business. There Will Be Blood is a poetic experience for cinema. It's magnificent and it's wholly original. This will be a film that will be study for generations to come.
March 6, 2018
EVERYTHING about this movie is genius .
March 4, 2018
Adam, you told me nobody died in this movie!
½ March 4, 2018
So long. This movie could have been half the length and tell the same story.
March 2, 2018
Certo sarebbe facile per me scrivere tante belle parole su questo film ritenuto da tutta la critica internazionale come un capolavoro senza tempo, tra i migliori film del 21░ secolo e non solo. Il film Ŕ senza dubbio un esperienza intensa e particolare che fa brillare un'interpretazione storica, ma per me risulta ancora molto pesante e duro da digerire. Sotto gli aspetti tecnici Ŕ la perfezione, una fotografia curatissima accompagna piani sequenza ed inquadrature spettacolari, che dimostrano un'altra volta il talento indiscusso del regista. E' anche un film intelligente, riflessivo, che prende il suo tempo per dare un messaggio e dire qualcosa. Non lo fa con metodi convenzionali, banali o facili da capire: Ŕ necessario un intenso sforzo da parte dello spettatore per elevare l'esperienza al massimo. Daniel Day Lewis ci regala l'interpretazione migliore della sua carriera, e forse una delle migliori della storia, le sue espressioni facciali e l'intensitÓ della sua recitazione hanno dell'incredibile. Nel complesso mi unisco alla critica e lo ritengo un capolavoro, un capolavoro pesante, intenso, riflessivo e memorabile, tra i migliori film di Paul T. Anderson e dell'inizio del secolo.
February 22, 2018
Though "No Country for Old Men" has the upper hand when it comes to suspense, you can't deny the significance that "There Will Be Blood" has brought onto the big screen. The cinematography was unique and beautiful. All shots felt like they came out of a painting. It's a film that studies the dark side of capitalism and how it can break a good man into two. Daniel Day Lewis is both mesmerizing and unforgettable in the role of Plainview, an oil-obsessed monarch who will do everything in his power to keep his empire growing. For filmmakers who seek strong characters and performances, this is a good film to start.
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