Customer Review

56 of 71 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Long, Dark Journey into the Soul of Greed and Power, April 10, 2008
This review is from: There Will Be Blood (DVD)
Upton Sinclair's epic novel OIL! has been successfully transformed to a film by screen writer/director Paul Thomas Anderson ('Magnolia','Boogie Nights', etc). The film is a long song (158 minutes), covering a fascinating span of time in turn of the century California when oil gained the lure of gold and transformed the land and the people into creatures of capitalism and greed and lust, and were it not for the presence of Daniel Day-Lewis' powerful performance as the man who makes it all happen, the story itself would become tiresome. It doesn't.

Daniel Plainview (Daniel Day-Lewis) is a silver miner in 1898, but soon discovers oil and begins on a mission to become wealthy, owning most of the oil fields from the mountains of central California to the Pacific Ocean. With his medicine man manner of getting people to do what he wants he pursues his greed relentlessly, disrupting small sleepy towns like Little Boston as he gains access to the wealth of the black gold. There are odd characters along the way, such as the evangelist Eli Sunday (Paul Dano) who become crushable clods beneath Plainview's boots. The progress of the story is well known to most: it is the telling of the tale in the hands of wholly credible, completely physically immersed Daniel Day-Lewis that makes the story seem new.

The film's grimy atmosphere is well presented in Robert Elswit's cinematography and the odd musical score by Jonny Greenwood is as ominous as the vantage of Plainview. Greenwood elects to weave classical works into the fabric of the film: when young HW falls deaf after an explosion the silence is partnered by one of Arvö Pärt's 'Fratres', and the film's credits are displayed over the Anne-Sophie Mutter/von Karajan recording of Brahms' Violin Concerto. Strange bedfellows, yes, but entirely appropriate to the overall mood of the film. The journey is long and depressing, but the power of Day-Lewis' performance is magic. Grady Harp, April 08
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No

[Add comment]
Post a comment
To insert a product link use the format: [[ASIN:ASIN product-title]] (What's this?)
Amazon will display this name with all your submissions, including reviews and discussion posts. (Learn more)
Name:
Badge:
This badge will be assigned to you and will appear along with your name.
There was an error. Please try again.
Please see the full guidelines here.

Official Comment

As a representative of this product you can post one Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.   Learn more
The following name and badge will be shown with this comment:
 (edit name)
After clicking the Post button you will be asked to create your public name, which will be shown with all your contributions.

Is this your product?

If you are the author, artist, manufacturer or an official representative of this product, you can post an Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.  Learn more
Otherwise, you can still post a regular comment on this review.

Is this your product?

If you are the author, artist, manufacturer or an official representative of this product, you can post an Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.   Learn more
 
System timed out

We were unable to verify whether you represent the product. Please try again later, or retry now. Otherwise you can post a regular comment.

Since you previously posted an Official Comment, this comment will appear in the comment section below. You also have the option to edit your Official Comment.   Learn more
The maximum number of Official Comments have been posted. This comment will appear in the comment section below.   Learn more
Prompts for sign-in
 

Comments

Tracked by 2 customers

Sort: Oldest first | Newest first
Showing 1-10 of 12 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Apr 12, 2008 2:51:07 AM PDT
All Red says:
I respectfully disagree with your opening statement. This film is NOT Upton Sinclair's "epic novel OIL! It is but a mere suggestion or an idea derived from the book, but not Upton Sinclair!
red

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 12, 2008 7:16:10 AM PDT
[Customers don't think this post adds to the discussion. Show post anyway. Show all unhelpful posts.]

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 13, 2008 12:18:35 AM PDT
[Deleted by Amazon on Sep 9, 2008 10:53:15 AM PDT]

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 13, 2008 7:53:44 AM PDT
[Customers don't think this post adds to the discussion. Show post anyway. Show all unhelpful posts.]

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 13, 2008 7:35:16 PM PDT
[Customers don't think this post adds to the discussion. Show post anyway. Show all unhelpful posts.]

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 18, 2008 8:08:28 PM PDT
He would have had to have actually watched it to know that. You expect too much.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 19, 2008 9:23:10 AM PDT
[Customers don't think this post adds to the discussion. Show post anyway. Show all unhelpful posts.]

Posted on Apr 21, 2008 12:16:22 PM PDT
[Deleted by Amazon on May 5, 2008 2:28:26 PM PDT]

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 21, 2008 3:19:34 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 21, 2008 3:20:15 PM PDT
[Customers don't think this post adds to the discussion. Show post anyway. Show all unhelpful posts.]

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 22, 2008 8:26:51 AM PDT
[Deleted by Amazon on May 5, 2008 2:28:22 PM PDT]
‹ Previous 1 2 Next ›

Review Details

Item

3.8 out of 5 stars (695 customer reviews)
5 star:
 (361)
4 star:
 (104)
3 star:
 (68)
2 star:
 (68)
1 star:
 (94)
 
 
 
$14.99 $7.00
Add to cart Add to wishlist
Reviewer

Grady Harp
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)    (TOP 100 REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   

Location: Los Angeles, CA United States

Top Reviewer Ranking: 52