“I drink your milkshake! I drink it up!”
I love it when a movie strikes you, punches you with emotion, without the characters saying any words. From the moment the movie begins, we see Daniel Plainview (Daniel Day-Lewis) drawing oil from the nearby hole he’s drilled. There are few words spoken during these first 15 minutes, but it adds such an impact to the audience.
Based loosely on Upton Sinclair’s “Oil,” Paul Thomas Anderson was able to create this gritty world of looking at a man who cares for nothing but money. For years and years, audiences throughout time have been introduced to figures that are consumed by wealth. However, the character of Daniel Plainview puts a scary spin on what greed can turn people into. People like Gordon Gekko, Charles Foster Kane, played a few games of chess with lady Greed herself. Plainview, however, is not just obsessed with the notion of greed, but he eventually becomes poisoned by it.
Due to Plainview’s need for more money and more oil, events begin to occur on screen and you can’t help but want to turn away. I don’t mean because the film is bad in any way, but it goes to say that “There Will Be Blood” is a film where, in the end, the characters become so corrupted, that they will stop at nothing to get ahead. But unlike Gekko or Kane, Plainview never regrets anything that he has done, which for some critics, might have been the negative mark against the film itself. Whether you think Plainview should have made amends or you think it was just to slow, I still, however, find the film to be one of the most intelligent films to watch.