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Paul Thomas Anderson's "Magnolia" is a powerhouse of a film. It's complex, probing, emotional and unforgettable. Every actor in it's large ensemble turns in a riveting performance. "Magnolia" is as much of an opera as it is a film, with is epic emotional scale and larger than life but always intensely human performances.
- stevenecarrier, Wednesday, July 7, 2010
I've watched this three times in the last few days, and I feel like watching it again as I write this. It's extremely complex; even more so than the other Paul Thomas Anderson movies. I know how I feel about it, but it's almost impossible to communicate it with words. There are so many characters and so many loosely connected plotlines, but I never once felt lost. The fact that this three hour movie never once feels tedious or drawn-out, is absolutely amazing. It's incredibly easy to watch and get swept up in the events of these people's lives. Some of them are much more interesting than others. A few of the characters and storylines held little interest for me, but what John C. Reilly, Tom Cruise, and (especially) Melora Walters do here is just amazing. I never thought I'd see a movie with Philip Seymour Hoffman and William H. Macy in it where they weren't the best actors, but as good as they were, they can't hold a candle to the three performances I just mentioned. This isn't for everyone. That's an understatement. Some people will find it pretentious. Others, will find certain events absurd. And most people will find themselves searching for the meaning of it all, after it ends. Magnolia is the kind of movie that requires repeated viewings, so be aware of that. Every single time I've watched it, I've understood and loved it a little bit more. Once you watch that final scene and feel something click inside you, you'll know that you've seen something special. Something so ambitious and unique that there's really little I can compare it to.
- lewiskendell, Saturday, May 1, 2010
"You can forget the past, but the past won't forget you." Quite a briliant film that has a lot to offer, and is what I believe to be an educational piece of cinema by Paul Thomas Anderson. The film consists of a series of poignant vignettes of nine interrelated characters through coincidence, past history, human action, and divine intervention in the San Fernando Valley. There is a lot going on in this film that touches on many issues which are problems in our society, and how certain individuals choose to deal with them. As John C. Reilly's police officer character says, "Sometimes you forgive people and let them off, and sometimes you send them to jail." This pertains not to only prison, but to the containment which dwells within each of us which keeps our emotions behind bars that are so desperately in need of freedom.
- yona71, Sunday, February 7, 2010