Universal acclaim - based on 39 Critics What's this?

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  • Summary: When Daniel Plainview gets a mysterious tip-off that there's a little town out West where an ocean of oil is oozing out of the ground, he heads there with his son, H.W., to take their chances in dust-worn Little Boston. In this hardscrabble town, where the main excitement centers around the HOLY ROLLER church of charismatic preacher Eli Sunday, Plainview and H.W. make their lucky strike. But even as the well raises all of their fortunes, nothing will remain the same as conflicts escalate and every human value--love, hope, community, belief, ambition, and even the bond between father and son--is imperiled by corruption, deception, and the flow of oil. (Paramount Vantage) Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 36 out of 39
  2. Negative: 0 out of 39
  1. Reviewed by: John DeFore
    Daniel Day-Lewis stuns in Paul Thomas Anderson's saga of a soul-dead oil man.
  2. There Will Be Blood is not a movie that disappears quietly.
  3. Daniel Day-Lewis's portrayal is not just the performance of the year -- there will be injustice if he doesn't win an Oscar -- but a creation of awesome proportions.
  4. 100
    There Will Be Blood" is anti-state of the art. It's the work of an analog filmmaker railing against an increasingly digitized world. In that sense, the movie is idiosyncratic, too: vintage visionary stuff.
  5. 91
    It's first-rank filmmaking, through and through, even if it struggles to find closure.
  6. With a grating symphonic score by ­Radiohead's Jonny Greenwood and the constant sense of danger following Plainview, "Blood" does not release its grip on the audience until its last, bizarrely crazy minutes.
  7. 42
    Anderson and Day-Lewis strip themselves of their natural talents for invention and poetry, as if any hint of romance, nobility or fun would soften the film.

See all 39 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Mar 29, 2011
    Daniel Day-Lewis and Paul Thomas Anderson have created one of the greatest movies of this time and perhaps of all time. There is so much ambition, brilliance, detail, and probably everything that you would put in a great movie. I don't think that anything, and anything could top this level of amazement for me. The film has put me through a cathartic and dogmatic experience by just watching. Truly outstanding on every **** level. A masterpiece. Expand
  2. Apr 11, 2013
    The film answers the question of how far greed can drive a man to succeed, and how far the money and in this case, oil, truly dictates human behaviour. There Will Be Blood tells the ultimate disaster of one man's mission to be the best at what he does, and discard anything that gets in his way.
    Daniel Day-Lewis puts in one of the greatest and most memorable performances of any actor or actress in the last few decades, his wispy and dominating voice truly capture the ruthless and maniacal means boiling beneath the surface, he is the 'oilman' Daniel Plainview, and he gets what he wants.
    The film opens with very little dialogue, we watch Plainview, alone and down a well, digging for oil, his perseverance and can-do attitude are apparent as he breaks his leg in a fall, but manages to get out of the well and start over again.
    Plainview and his son, HW, coax towns into letting them dig up their land in the search for oil, and when he is approached into a town with the potential of riches beyond measure, he is met with the bizarre and erratic Eli Sunday (Paul Dano), a preacher who ends up being at egotistical loggerheads with Plainview about his faith and his intentions with the town.
    After a tragic accident, Plainviews behaviour drastically changes and ulterior motive soon come to light, wanting to have so much money that he would no longer have to know people. The addition of his half-brother perhaps shows a more humanly side to him, but he seems determined and forthright to get what he wants, eventually falling into obsessive and alcohol-fuelled madness.
    An epic tale which is never without its drama, There Will Be Blood never fails to impress in its acting, writing and visual landscapes of beauty, filming in the same place as No Country for Old Men, the similarities in film style.
    But of course it is the thrilling characters that truly make this film what it is, Plainview has flashes of Citizen Kane in his determination for everything, but ultimately loneliness at what he has become.
    The film has styles of long scenes and plenty of dialogue, but what truly needs to be seen is the characters who bring these scenes to life, the ambition of Paul Thomas Anderson could indeed have been a hit or miss but what he has created is something unique.
    The often debated ending has been the subject of many talks, particularly peoples distaste for it, but as the film goes on its difficult to imagine another finish, other than the madness within.
    A truly remarkable film that never ceases to amaze in its character development, expert writing and ambitious reach that could very well be the best film in the last fifteen years. Taking it from its remarkable perch could indeed be a difficult thing.
  3. Jun 15, 2014
    Many critics called it "a masterpiece" and "One of the best film of decade", then I really agree about that. You can't easily find many film like "There Will Be Blood", very rare, an epic drama film. With a story about family, oil, religion and greed, this film easily become one of the richest film ever made. Daniel Day-Lewis' performance is outstanding. Expand
  4. Jan 5, 2012
    First off, Daniel Day Lewis is untouchable (as always) and makes the film that much greater from his performance alone. There Will Be Blood gives us a cold hard look at the world of Oil Drilling and I loved it. It can be a little boring at times ,god knows the run time takes away from the film a bit, but the majority of the film is simply amazing and more then makes up for it. Expand
  5. Jul 31, 2013
    The closing sequence delivers on the promise of the movie's title in a manner that keeps viewers discussing it long after the picture ends. “There Will Be Blood” is not a movie that disappears quietly. Paul Thomas Anderson's epic masterpiece "There will be Blood" is a steadfast reflection of the very essence of capitalism in America, where domination, not gain, is the ultimate objective, and by any means necessary.

    When we first meet Daniel Plainview (Daniel Day-Lewis) in 1898, he's mining for gold in a shaft he has dug into the ground of his Texas property. He finds what he's looking for, and perhaps more. Several years later, he has shifted his focus from gold to oil and he has been able to hire some hands. When an accident results in a death, Daniel finds himself with an infant orphan to care for. He raises the child, known as H.W., to be his own. By 1912, Daniel has become a well-known oilman, and he his looking to expand his empire. Accompanied by his partner, Fletcher (Ciarán Hinds), and his son (Dillon Freasier), he travels to California to follow a promising lead. What he finds there astonishes him. He seeks to buy large parcels of property, but he is impeded in his goal by the evangelist preacher Eli Sunday (Paul Dano), who wants Daniel to donate $10,000 to the local church before he sells. After the contract is signed, however, Daniel reneges on the deal. Shortly thereafter, once the first drill has become operational, there is an accident that results in an explosion that fuels a major oil fire and costs H.W. his hearing.

    For most of the film, Daniel is a fascinating character. He's a mass of contradictions: charismatic, ugly, easygoing, ruthless, silver-tongued, plain-spoken, gentle, violent. He's smart and understands how to manipulate every situation to his advantage. He understands the business of oil and transforms himself from a poor miner into a wealthy businessman. Unfortunately, the more power Daniel amasses, the more corrupt and dissolute he becomes. Anderson chronicles Daniel's personality decay intelligently. He establishes the character as an admirable individual, but eventually his morality slowly erodes. The lives of these two, Daniel and Eli, are self-centered, cunning, and ruthless men who collide and lead us into the dark, unpaved path of madness of self-destruction driven by their unrelenting greed.

    “There Will Be Blood” is a rich character study of a fascinating individual who is by turns likable, loathsome, admirable, monstrous, and driven. What Day-Lewis brings to the characterization is more exquisite and complex than anything even Anderson might have imagined at the outset. His Plainview is the most gripping film performance of the year, and as his religious foil, Dano also reveals unsuspected depths. Long, but so well crafted with terrific cinematography, and beautifully written/directed by Paul Thomas Anderson. Daniel Day-Lewis and Robert Elswit both earned Academy Awards.
  6. Nov 8, 2012
    Only thing bad about this movie is that it's very slow paced and takes quite some time to really get into. By the end of it however, You will love it. Daniel Day-Lewis gives what is easily his best performance (and that's saying something) in this movie. Expand
  7. Jun 22, 2011
    Absolutely awful movie! I saw this movie because there was nothing else on and to say I didn't like it is an understatement. Truthfully the entire movie is uninteresting, boring and supremely stupid. Expand

See all 524 User Reviews


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