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#601231 - 10/08/12 06:11 PM Re: pt anderson's "the master" [Re: Charles Reece]
madget Offline
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Registered: 05/11/01
Posts: 4870
As oddly unsatisfying as the film was, I'll want to see it again and let my brain chew on it a little more. I enjoyed it less than any other PT Anderson picture, probably, but I do keep thinking about it. It's that deliberative quality it has. No matter how odd or flat the movie is, it all feels so pointedly by design. Like there are a few riddles tucked in there that you want to go back to and unravel. Or not. Anderson's cartoonish, pointless-seeming characters and cult quirks make me question how effectively he's meditating on anything deeper, or something that I've yet to put together.

I don't know how I feel about that review. Maybe I'm still not 100% sure how I feel about the movie. It just didn't seem to me at all about dominion and submission in any tangible way, though the author might've been onto something in his closing thoughts. Like so many things in the film thematically, submission/domination seems peripheral; but, to what? The movie's just plain odd. Maybe it's just badly done, but in a high-level kinda way. I don't know. I certainly agree with the reviewer that it had very few easily accessible cues, and that after about the halfway point, a kind of tedium sets in, as you realize the movie is not going to amp your serotonin levels anymore than it already has by that point, but will almost certainly continue taking directions that frustrate the desire for cohesion. A lot of scenes/shots -- especially in the second half -- feel interminably long, for obscure reasons. Like Freddie and Dodd going into the desert to retrieve his buried manuscript or whatever? We just watch them walk out to the location for what feels like five minutes, then back again. Nothing is said that I recall. Nothing transpires. The only point seems to be that they are doing this together. But there's no context; scenes before and after leave the amount of time elapsed unclear.

I've seen other movies with a minimal or peripheral narrative, in which long, unhurried, undramatic takes are employed in a more effective way. Meek's Cutoff, or The Headless Woman. Maybe Dogtooth. They're challenging movies, but I got them, I was digging it. Content was still being transmitted during the silences, something was being established or said on one level or another, and the overall unification of style was building into an intriguing cumulative emotional and intellectual effect. The Master by contrast feels too episodic to fit into that mold, quite. And the episodes seem so randomly chosen.

Anyway, I rewatched BOOGIE NIGHTS, which held up pretty well. It's characters are sort of cartoonish and not very interesting to me, which holds the movie back, but it's still a good movie and a rich display of Anderson's talent. Loved that drug deal scene referenced earlier in the thread. Loved the firecrackers! Such a great, comically surreal detail, that adds so much to the scene.

K

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#601233 - 10/08/12 06:17 PM Re: pt anderson's "the master" [Re: madget]
madget Offline
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Registered: 05/11/01
Posts: 4870
I go back and rewatch the full trailer for The Master, and I feel like, "this is the movie I wanted." I feel like the trailer conveys almost everything important about the movie itself, if maybe a little skewed towards Freddie's side, but with actual emotional resonance.

K

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#601258 - 10/10/12 10:07 PM Re: pt anderson's "the master" [Re: madget]
granfalloon Offline
Member

Registered: 10/27/03
Posts: 724
Loc: Toronto, Canada
I saw it a couple of hours ago and didn't really know what to make of it. P.T.Anderson is claiming that he used L.Ron Hubbard as a template for Lancaster Dodd but that the movie is not about Scientology. That is nonsense. It is plainly about Scientology. All the drills, books and therapies are no farther away from Scientology then a mustached Philip Seymour Hoffman is from L.Ron Hubbard. I got caught up watching the comparisons. Mind you, the acting, particularly by Joachim Pheonix, the cinemetography and the naked women, even the heavy one at the end, were all worth looking at. But the sort of guy who likes car chases, explosions and fruit carts tipping over is definitely not going to like this film.

I will make a wild prediction though. It will win an academy award for something. When it does the entire audience at the Academy Awards show will get on its feet and cheer. Take away Tom Cruise, Kirstie Alley, John Travolta and a few dozen others and what you have left is thousands of working film makers who think the cult of Xenu is bonkers. They are ashamed that it is seen as the Hollywood religion. This film respects the people who have been caught up in the cult, treating the Dodd character as a charlatan. As a public service, if not as a vehicle to sell popcorn, the film does well.
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Jeez, granfalloon, that longer post above might be one of the most thoughtful, best written things I've ever read on Comicon.
--Lawson

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#601259 - 10/11/12 11:28 PM Re: pt anderson's "the master" [Re: granfalloon]
Allen Montgomery Online   content
Member

Registered: 05/08/00
Posts: 7089
Anderson is on the Daily Show right now. His basic summation of his filmmaking is that he doesn't know what he's doing. And I agree.
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"The trouble with being a ghost writer or artist is that you must remain anonymous without credit.
If one wants the credit, one has to cease being a ghost and become a leader or innovator."
— Bob Kane

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#601260 - 10/12/12 07:59 PM Re: pt anderson's "the master" [Re: Allen Montgomery]
Peter Urkowitz Offline
Member

Registered: 08/28/00
Posts: 3231
Loc: Salem, MA, USA
Here's Steve Bissette's brief reflections on THE MASTER:

http://srbissette.com/?p=16058&cpage=1#comment-7884

What especially caught my eye was his note at the end:

"The ideal next Anderson movie: another American family tale, that of William Moulton Marston‘s extended family, the invention of the lie detector, and the creation of Wonder Woman… well, that’s my two-cents, if I were ever asked (which I’m not)."

Which led me to comment:

"Cool idea about a William Moulton Marston movie. Maybe that would be the only real way to do a Wonder Woman movie, since the challenge of filming one seems to be beyond any filmmaker today. How do you make a modern movie about such a weird, context-dependent fantasy figure? Well, maybe if you make it explicit that she is a fantasy, and focus on the fantasist and his context, then it would all make sense.

By the way, maybe this is as good a time as any for me to nominate my pick for an actress to portray that fantasy character: Bollywood star Katrina Kaif! Look her up on YouTube, I think she would fill the role pretty well in many ways, not just physically, but with her presence and personality too."

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#601281 - 10/19/12 10:06 PM Re: pt anderson's "the master" [Re: Peter Urkowitz]
granfalloon Offline
Member

Registered: 10/27/03
Posts: 724
Loc: Toronto, Canada
If you are like me, and just can't get enough of Scientology, there is another movie out called, "We are Legion" and it is getting even better reviews than The Master. It is about Anonymous, and spends time going into their assault on the Church of Xenu. I can't wait until it comes to my town.
_________________________
Jeez, granfalloon, that longer post above might be one of the most thoughtful, best written things I've ever read on Comicon.
--Lawson

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#601372 - 11/04/12 09:20 AM Re: pt anderson's "the master" [Re: granfalloon]
granfalloon Offline
Member

Registered: 10/27/03
Posts: 724
Loc: Toronto, Canada
"Men Who Stare at Goats," was also not inspired by Scientology. It was not about Ingo Swann, Pat Price (Scientologists) and Uri Geller who worked with two Ph.D.'s (Targ and Puthoff-- one a Scientologist) to convince the military and the CIA that they were having out of body experiences.

Higher ups took away their funding because the people involved were being stupid and ridiculous.

The problem with that movie is they took away many of the facts (as did The Master), I must assume, to avoid lawsuit. Anyway, Price is dead, Geller was discredited by Johnny Carson who was a better scientist than Targ and Puthoff together. Geller is now reserving his nonsense for Spainish television. Swann may be visiting Jupiter, as he used to claim to be, for all I know. The American military are exploring other, more sensible ways of defending America.

The movie sucked. The Master is Gone with the Wind, next to it.

Bowfinger, about Mindhead, not Scientology, is a really good film though. Eddie Murphy does not play Tom Cruise no matter how much he seems to.
_________________________
Jeez, granfalloon, that longer post above might be one of the most thoughtful, best written things I've ever read on Comicon.
--Lawson

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