Attention film nerds: you’re going to want to watch this. If you’re a fan of Paul Thomas Anderson—which if you aren’t, what is wrong with you?—you understand that the 42-year-old genius has the most incredible gift for storytelling that’s as rich as reading any novel while remaining visually and technically skilled. It’s pretty incredible to think that with only six feature films under his belt, Anderson has become one of the most acclaimed directors of our time, not only awakening our love of cinema but showing us the ways in which a filmmaker can evolve with each movie he makes.
And when it comes to analyzing the work of PTA, Sight & Sound’s Kevin B. Lee has a intelligent and fluid understanding of his films. And in his latest critique Lee looks at Anderson’s work through the lens his affinity for Steadicam. He analyzes PTA’s love of a good tracking shot and the ways in which Anderson has changed his use of the style throughout his career. If you can carve out a solid ten minutes, I would suggest watching this and taking a look back on some of the dynmaic director’s finest moments.
The Career of Paul Thomas Anderson in Five Shots
Magnolia, Restaurant Scene
Boogie Nights, Pool Party
Hard Eight, Gonna Light the Cigarette
Punch-Drunk Love, I Want to Bite Your Cheek
There Will Be Blood, I Drink Your Milkshake
Magnolia, I’ve Done So Many Bad Things
Hard Eight, Prologue
Boogie Nights, Opening Scene
Punch-Drunk Love, Phone Scene