Monday, February 18, 2008

There Will Be Blood

Briefly: AWESOME.

Not so briefly:

I was taken to a much needed movie break this afternoon. I am back to work now, but for a few hours I was lost in this movie. It is a more than a movie: it is another world, with different cosmology, morality, and conception of brutality. It wasn't overly violent--there is not THAT much blood. But the violence was in the words and glaring silences and bubbling under the surface like the oil that oozes everywhere. I was feeling pretty bad, and it was nice to give my violent feelings some outlet. I am from a largely pacifist college city where everyone is supposed to be a bourgie bohemian and feel-goody and crap like that. Whatever. Rage and anger are human, and occasionally I have so much of it that it shocks even me, that I can feel this much. But I don't act on it, really. Not that I'm one of those Zen people that channels it constructively, but in general, I live in a society and under moral and legal codes that demand that I don't act on such anger in destructive ways. But this movie takes you to a different world, where anger is barely contained, and violence is salvation and damnation. There is no higher law in a world where men make all the laws.

It is a dark world thrown into high sunlit desert relief: as if the film were washed in one color filter of bright gold. It is a world where the men are oily and unctuous, human incarnations of the black ooze. Their faces are oily and look like carved masks of polished wood or stone: frightening fake smiles or grimaces of rage.

Daniel Day-Lewis is terrifying and amazing. Paul Dano freaks me out and impresses me.

See this movie!