There is a lot of mystery surrounding Paul Thomas Anderson’s latest film The Master.
Reportedly, the film tells the tale of the rise of a religious/self help organization that becomes popular across America. If that synopsis sounds vaguely familiar, that’s because many are speculating that the film draws parallels with the beginnings of the Scientology movement founded by L. Ron Hubbard.
If that is indeed the case, this looks to be one of the most fascinating movies of 2012…as well as one of the most controversial.
Considering the celebrity backing of Scientology, and the intense secretive nature of the movement, this film has the potential to create a firestorm. Adding to the mystery of the production, is the lack of promotional material released so far for the film. Which is unusual for such a high profile project. Even the title of the film was just recently confirmed. In some circles the film is still referred to as the Untitled Paul Thomas Anderson project.
Adding to the intrigue was a recent New York Times article which speculated on the possible motive of Paul Thomas Anderson to make the film. Another added element to the film is that Paul Thomas Anderson once directed Tom Cruise in the film Magnolia. And we all know Tom Cruise’s association with Scientology.
In any event, it’s just great to have a new film from Paul Thomas Anderson coming out. He is definitely one of the most critically acclaimed, and talented directors of this generation. So anything he does usually turns out great. The obvious artistic comparison for Paul Thomas Anderson would be Robert Altman. Especially his early work like Boogie Nights and Magnolia. But I think in a lot of ways, he is this generation’s Stanley Kubrick.
A bold statement to be sure, but I think a case can be made, especially considering his last epic film There Will Be Blood.
This teaser trailer for The Master only re-enforces the comparisons to Stanley Kubrick. The clip is ambiguous, while being borderline puzzling. The emphasis seems to be less on plot and more on interesting imagery and unsettling tone.
The Master stars Joaquin Phoenix, Phillip Seymour Hoffman, and Amy Adams. The film is directed by Paul Thomas Anderson. It is scheduled for release December 2012.
Official Synopsis :
Written and directed by Academy Award nominee Paul Thomas Anderson (the acclaimed director of, There Will Be Blood, Magnolia and Boogie Nights), this story stars Academy Award winner Philip Seymour Hoffman (Capote) and Academy Award-nominee Joaquin Phoenix (Walk the Line). Set in America in the years following World War II, a charismatic intellectual (Hoffman) launches a faith-based organization and taps a young drifter (Phoenix) as his right-hand man. But as the faith begins to gain a fervent following, the onetime vagabond finds himself questioning the belief system he has embraced, and his mentor. A truly one-of-a-kind drama, which promises magnetic virtuoso performances, the film marks the fifth collaboration between Anderson and Hoffman, following Hard Eight, Boogie Nights, Magnolia, and Punch Drunk Love.