Paul Thomas Anderson is definitely considered a champion of cinema. He’s a guy who shot his last film on 70mm film, loves the medium, and makes movies with deep characters and complex themes. Recently, he’s began eschewing strict narrative in favor of a looser structures, too. In short, he sounds like exactly the kind of person who’d be opposed to the boom of massive superhero movies at the box office.
But, you’d be wrong. In a new interview, Anderson defends the genre. Read the Paul Thomas Anderson superhero movie quotes below. Read More »
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Some of the most inspirational filmmaking stories are tales of failure. Not the sort of failure that shuts down a production, but the sort that makes people look at a scene or a problem in a new light. It’s impressive to see a film that works in a near-perfect manner, but more so to realize that it didn’t just happen that way. Making a film like There Will Be Blood may seem impossible, until you realize Paul Thomas Anderson and everyone else involved just built it step by step, dealing with setbacks along the way, and using intuition and imagination to solve problems.
Or take Anderson’s new film Inherent Vice. One scene that works really well is a long conversation between Joaquin Phoenix and Reese Witherspoon — you’ve seen it excerpted in trailers and in the image above. They talk for a few minutes, and the whole thing is one shot in which the camera slowly pushes in on a dolly to add movement and a changing perspective. It works so well that a lot of people won’t even think about the shot the first time.
But that’s not how Anderson initially conceived and shot the scene. He first did it in a way that didn’t work, spending a lot of time and energy before realizing that a different, simpler approach was the way to go. He talks about the process in a new interview, which you can watch below. Read More »
Inherent Vice is a big movie with a lot of moving parts. Even though it cuts out a lot of material from the novel by Thomas Pynchon, the film still has a wealth of characters with odd names, many of whom are given pretty breezy introductions. But a set of Inherent Vice character posters and brief video introductions for many of the major characters might help you sort people out ahead of time.
The downside is that these video intros give up a few of the film’s good jokes (but not all of them by any means). The upside is that these videos feature a bunch of footage that isn’t in the film, not that most people will have a chance to know which is which until after this Friday. Read More »
Two movies. That’s all it took for every single Paul Thomas Anderson movie to become an event. His first film, Hard Eight, opened with relatively little fanfare. His second, Boogie Nights, announced to the world that Anderson would be a filmmaker to celebrate. One whose work we would anticipate, possibly revere. With each subsequent film, film fans everywhere have salivated to find out what Anderson has in store for us next.
The latest event, Inherent Vice, opens in limited release this weekend. It’s both a huge departure for the director in that it’s the first film of his directly based on someone else’s work (the inspiration for There Will Be Blood was very different from the final film), but somehow it also perfectly fits into his career. Like most of his movies, it’s a film set in and around California and tells a story about its history. Anderson loves California, and that interest shows in almost every one of his movies. And while exploring that running theme, each of his seven movies gets more confident and daring. There has yet to be a single misstep.
Still, there has to be some kind of hierarchy, right? Some kind of almost impossible deathmatch in which these seven glorious works are pitted against one another, to see which triumphs.
Below, read our ranking of the best Paul Thomas Anderson movies. Read More »
Inherent Vice begins its limited rollout tomorrow, and the excellent and unusual film should be on your must-see list for the end of the year. (Or for early January, if you’re in a market that doesn’t get it this month.) As prep for that release there has been a new trailer, a handful of clips, and now writer/director Paul Thomas Anderson has taken a minute to talk the New York Times through one scene in the film. The upshot of that is, you can listen in. Check out a brief Inherent Vice scene commentary from the director below. Read More »
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Paul Thomas Anderson‘s newest film, Inherent Vice, opens limited on December 12, but for the markets that don’t get the film until January Warner Bros. is offering sneak preview screenings this coming Saturday, December 13. You can get theater info here, and there’s a great new Inherent Vice trailer that tells of the upcoming screenings. It also has some footage you haven’t seen before, a digitally-altered version of a shot from the film (above, with extra details added to the painting) and a little bit of the awesome Can song ‘Vitamin C’ that is used to good effect in the film’s opening.
This is a really good representation of the film condensed down into two minutes. Check it out below. Read More »
Inherent Vice, the new film from Paul Thomas Anderson, isn’t just an adaptation of the novel of the same name by Thomas Pynchon. It is part of a specific tradition of movies that pry into the gaps between visions of American culture, especially as seen on the streets of Los Angeles locations. Paul Thomas Anderson has talked about one or two specifically as Inherent Vice influences, and beyond those few titles is an expansive set of movies in which characters who are all but lost as mainstream culture and power swirl around them.
These are films that line up with the spirit of Inherent Vice. Sometimes it’s just in the case of one sequence, or one shade of the movie. But put all these films together and you have a weekend worth of movies that will prepare you for the desultory, city-spanning story of Doc Sportello. No spoilers for PTA’s movie are here as we talk about the films that link up with it in this particular cinematic tradition, but when you do see Inherent Vice after seeing these you’ll immediately see how they all fit together.
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Paul Thomas Anderson never ceases to amaze. He makes a rain of frogs look plausible, turns Adam Sandler into an actor, and makes an iconic image out of drinking milkshakes. He’s always doing something surprising and wonderful. Anderson’s latest film, Inherent Vice, is two hours of those moments loosely strung together with a detective narrative.
Based on the novel by Thomas Pynchon, Inherent Vice stars Joaquin Phoenix as Doc, a ratty detective whose mysterious ex-girlfriend Shasta (Katherine Waterston) asks for help with a supposed plot against her new squeeze. Doc obliges, as Doc does with many people in the film, but the movie never really cares about solving this mystery. It’s more interested in Doc’s pot-infused, Choose Your Own Adventure lifestyle where he says “yes” to everything and takes the ride that follows.
That ride introduces some absolutely insane, memorable characters played by the likes of Josh Brolin, Martin Short, Reese Withersooon, Owen Wilson, Benicio Del Toro, Eric Roberts, Maya Rudolph and Jena Malone, all of whom pop in and out of Doc’s life on a whim. Some play significant roles, others do not, but Inherent Vice isn’t a movie about connecting these points. It’s pretty much just about the trip.
Inherent Vice had its Los Angeles Premiere at the AFI Fest presented by Audi and you can continue reading our Inherent Vice movie review below.
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Paul Thomas Anderson has given us an unexpected gift this morning, and if you live in London there are actually two gifts. For everyone, there’s a new Inherent Vice UK trailer, cut by Anderson himself. For those actually in the UK — and specifically, those in London or close to the city — the special gift is that this trailer heralds surprise screenings of the film which will take place this coming Wednesday. Check out the new trailer below, and get the screening info, too.
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