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Absurd_Life



Joined: 03 Jul 2003
Posts: 377
Location: Minneapolis
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theprophet1986 wrote:

don't like that stuff in my cinema when I'm not expecting it.

But I think the two strongest aspects of TWBB that will give it Oscar nominations
are the score and Daniel Day Lewis.




hmm, I'm still convinced they are the same person. Eli/Paul wanted out of his family and wanted to be wealthy so he sought Plainview to learn how to become an "oilman." He stuck around doing the whole religious thing to cover up his true intentions, and then conveniently had to leave for a "mission" when in truth he was off on his way to start up his oil company using the money he made doing the church thing. He then later returns to Plainview when he is losing money with his oil company and seeks more money from Plainview by trying to sell off more land (that Plainview is already sucking up the oil from anyway). I think Plainview saw through Eli the entire time which is why he showed so much hatred toward him, never paid the $5,000 for the church, and then during the final scene he made Eli/Paul declare he is a false prophet. Also interesting that the character's name is Eli, plays off the word "lie."

So, I don't know I still think they are the same person, just my thinking. Do you by chance have the link to where there was originally a different actor casted for one of the roles?



I think this theory can be disproven because of the scene where Eli jumps over the dinner table to strangle his father, and says some stuff about "It's because of your son that this happened! He went and told Plainview about the oil." after calling him a stupid old man. Obviously if they were the same person, and not brothers, he wouldn't have refered to himself in the third person to his own father.
Post Sun Feb 03, 2008 1:41 pm
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theprophet1986



Joined: 22 Sep 2007
Posts: 58
Location: Detroit
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Absurd_Life wrote:
theprophet1986 wrote:

don't like that stuff in my cinema when I'm not expecting it.

But I think the two strongest aspects of TWBB that will give it Oscar nominations
are the score and Daniel Day Lewis.




hmm, I'm still convinced they are the same person. Eli/Paul wanted out of his family and wanted to be wealthy so he sought Plainview to learn how to become an "oilman." He stuck around doing the whole religious thing to cover up his true intentions, and then conveniently had to leave for a "mission" when in truth he was off on his way to start up his oil company using the money he made doing the church thing. He then later returns to Plainview when he is losing money with his oil company and seeks more money from Plainview by trying to sell off more land (that Plainview is already sucking up the oil from anyway). I think Plainview saw through Eli the entire time which is why he showed so much hatred toward him, never paid the $5,000 for the church, and then during the final scene he made Eli/Paul declare he is a false prophet. Also interesting that the character's name is Eli, plays off the word "lie."

So, I don't know I still think they are the same person, just my thinking. Do you by chance have the link to where there was originally a different actor casted for one of the roles?



I think this theory can be disproven because of the scene where Eli jumps over the dinner table to strangle his father, and says some stuff about "It's because of your son that this happened! He went and told Plainview about the oil." after calling him a stupid old man. Obviously if they were the same person, and not brothers, he wouldn't have refered to himself in the third person to his own father.


Eli hated his home life and went through that ordeal to show that he was in power over his own father. It shows that he can take control over his own father, when the father should be the one calling the shots. Just look at how Plainview took control of his fake son.

I don't know, I don't think you can say that theory can be disproved just because of that one scene.
Post Mon Feb 04, 2008 11:17 am
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cakes



Joined: 15 Dec 2006
Posts: 2586
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Absurd_Life wrote:
Obviously if they were the same person, and not brothers, he wouldn't have refered to himself in the third person to his own father.


nope. that's not obvious. not to say the character could have had a personality disorder (though i thought the book was clear that they were two people? i didn't read it, but it sounded like people were saying that), but who says people don't create alter egos to compensate for another part of themselves? there's nothing to say that he can't refer to his own alter ego in the third person. i probably would, especially if i thought he ruined everything for me.
Post Mon Feb 04, 2008 11:33 am
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ecapataz



Joined: 14 Jun 2006
Posts: 1960
Location: Bonn, Germany
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theprophet1986 wrote:

I don't know, I don't think you can say that theory can be disproved just because of that one scene.


The first and only scene with Paul where he mentions his Sunday family he mentions his brother Eli.

Its sloppy film making to use the same character for Paul and Eli, even sloppier to not have Eli age 1 minute in the 20+ years later final scene.
Post Mon Feb 04, 2008 11:36 am
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Captiv8



Joined: 25 Aug 2006
Posts: 8501
Location: Third Coast
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I watched the whole movie under the assumption that Eli and Paul were the same person, especially after the scene were Eli "introduces" himself for the first time to Plainwiew and his son. I will admit that I was confused when when Eli attacks his father and references Paul, but what I've concluded is that Paul is really an alter ego, almost a possession of Eli's, and this is why Plainview refers to him as a false prophet in the end. Eli asked for the initial money as Paul, even asking Plainview what his religious views were as a kind of Eli override, and Plainview did give him the money. Then, as Eli, he kept asking for the money, unconscious that his alter ego Paul had already received it and was investing it in oil. Kind of a Tyler Durden thing without the insomnia.

At any rate, I think the movie is phenomenal and really captures the "man as an island" aesthetic. Danie Day-Lewis is a juggernaut, Paul Dano is incredible alongside DDL, and the boy that played the son was also pretty good for such a young actor.
Post Mon Feb 04, 2008 11:38 am
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the Baumer



Joined: 09 May 2006
Posts: 222
Location: Boulder, CO
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xGREENxCLOVERx wrote:


"In an interview on the National Public Radio program "Fresh Air with Terry
Gross," Paul Dano told Gross that he had originally been cast in the much
smaller role of Paul Sunday, Eli's brother, and another actor had been cast
as Eli. However, after Paul Dano had already started filming his one scene
as Paul Sunday, Paul Thomas Anderson decided to replace the actor playing
Eli. Anderson then asked Dano to play Eli Sunday (a much bigger role) as
well as Paul Sunday, and they decided to change the film to make the
brothers identical twins. Anderson asked Dano to play Eli on a Thursday, and
filming for the role began four days later, on the next Monday. Daniel
Day-Lewis, by contrast, had a whole year to prepare to play Daniel
Plainview."

That's from the trivia section on TWBB's IMDB.com page.
http://imdb.com/title/tt0469494/trivia

Though I really like your interpretation. It adds more to the final scene where
Plainfield makes Eli denounce God, the church, etc. This is definitely a movie
I gotta see a few more times, along with No Country for Old Men.
Post Mon Feb 04, 2008 12:08 pm
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tom inhaler
me too!


Joined: 30 Jun 2002
Posts: 4398
Location: providence
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all this talk of sloppy filmmaking is killing me right now.

do you guys remember the scene with daniel and his brother, where daniel is talking about his ambition, his drive, and asks his brother if he has it in him? and his brother says he thinks it's all gone from him, that a lifetime of failure has taken any care of success from him.. and daniel says "well it's in me, so it must be in you". (awful paraphrasing, i know)

having eli and paul played by the same actor further pushes this idea. the first time daniel meets eli, the way he looks at him, the way H.R looks at him, they're seeing paul. part of daniel's distrust of eli throughout the whole film is knowing that no matter how much eli claims to be a man of god, he still has that sliminess in him. the way eli tries to get money for the church, the way eli tries to make himself part of the beginning of drilling ceremony to win more influence over the townspeople. to have that physically embodied by having eli and paul played by the same actor is not sloppy.

i'm sure it's common for a lot of writers/musicians/painters to look back on their work and see connections that they hadn't intended on being there, but end up being in the final product (it happens to me every once in a while at least). i believe that PTA saw an opportunity to further connect the pieces of his story, and made the decision to cast paul as eli too.

*

with all that being said, i wasn't blown away by this movie. it was great, PTA is brilliant, but it didn't sit completely right with me at first viewing (which i just got home from). i need to think about it for a few days.
Post Tue Feb 05, 2008 12:34 am
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tom inhaler
me too!


Joined: 30 Jun 2002
Posts: 4398
Location: providence
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M Hanora asked me to post this cause her computer is being funky. i agreed to post it because she agreed with me.

*

over the many years tom and i have been friends, i've come to respect his appetite for movies if not always his taste. i take his recommendations and opinions to heart. his above response clearly proves why. it also shows why DDL killed this movie. from the initial expression on his face when he meets eli, he imbues you with all sorts of turmoil and confusion. to me it's completely ridiculous to think they were ACTUALLY they same person, but not to wonder about what happens to the blood amongst families; how it disperses. and then, if that's the case, how ironic that DDL says to his son "you are not my son." in fact he is the most his son as he is the whole movie when he goes out on his own. or then again, maybe not because he doesn't seem to have the competitive spirit.

for me the biggest glaring weakness, was the huge time lapse. and also the fact that i thought the deaf son's story would have been more interesting. ha. anyway, this movie didn't blow me away. initially my reaction was that it was a 2.5 hour character sketch. but DDL definitely, definitely killed it and it is worth seeing.
Post Tue Feb 05, 2008 2:53 pm
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medicineman
HALFLING


Joined: 21 Apr 2007
Posts: 1393
Location: Iowa City
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OK, so this was on page 3 by the time I saw this movie so I know I'm late. Have to say I wasn't incredibly impressed by it. I mean, it was good. But I was hoping it was going to be GREAT with all the hype I've been hearing about it. I thought the pacing and tone was a little odd. I may just need to see it again. I'm not sure what I thought of the score. At times I was questioning it...again, prolly should see it again. I was having a hard time not cracking up in the theatre though, because Daniel Day Lewis kept reminding me of Will Farrell trying to do a real serious voice. I mean, the posture, moustache, facial expression, intonation...all reminded me of in Anchorman where he's like "I have many leather-bound books and my apartment smells of rich mahogany." I mean, say that and then in the same voice say "I think you'd agree I'm an oil man. I have many wells producing many gallons and" so forth. It's the same voice, dammit. Anyway. B+.
Post Tue Feb 12, 2008 10:16 am
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tommi teardrop



Joined: 12 Apr 2007
Posts: 2211
Location: Las Vegas
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I finally saw this. Not really what I was expecting, but I really enjoyed it. After leaving the theater I was sort of disappointed, but sitting here now, I realize how good it really is. The drilling scenes were great. And Daniel Day Lewis is the greatest actor on the planet as far as I'm concerned.

As far as the Eli/Paul thing, I took it to mean that they were the same person, but that Paul was an actual brother, and that Eli just used his name and assumed his identity so that he could play the whole thing off. To me, this would explain the dinner table thing with the father. He was effectively blaming his brother for doing what he did.

The reason I think this is true is because it coincides thematically with the imposter brother that Daniel kills. I sort of assumed that the real Paul had left the town and that Eli took his existence as a means to live a double life. Even to the end when he starts his own company.

Did you all think that Daniel was hip to the scam the whole time? Did you think he was lying about his son being an orphan?

It did remind me of No Country tone wise, but to me it is not near the film that No Country for Old Men is. Props to Paul Thomas Anderson for getting out of his own way and just making a film.

I'm interested to see what he does next.
Post Thu Feb 21, 2008 4:36 pm
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medicineman
HALFLING


Joined: 21 Apr 2007
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Location: Iowa City
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Aren't they supposed to be twins? Everybody's talking about how it was the same actor I just thought it was implied they were twins.

"You were the afterbirth" ?? Regarding him as inferior as the second-born twin?
Post Thu Feb 21, 2008 11:49 pm
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AirTreesWaterAnimals



Joined: 31 Jul 2004
Posts: 2987
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Yeah, it has been confirmed. They were twins. There's no debate.
Post Thu Feb 21, 2008 11:56 pm
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invisiblewindow



Joined: 31 Dec 2002
Posts: 1063
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track three on the soundtrack is pure melancholic beauty.

'prospectors arrive'

in the film...used amazingly.

film = future classic
Post Fri Feb 22, 2008 9:31 am
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the contortionist



Joined: 18 May 2004
Posts: 707
Location: Brighton, UK
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tommi teardrop wrote:
I finally saw this. Not really what I was expecting, but I really enjoyed it. After leaving the theater I was sort of disappointed, but sitting here now, I realize how good it really is. The drilling scenes were great. And Daniel Day Lewis is the greatest actor on the planet as far as I'm concerned.

As far as the Eli/Paul thing, I took it to mean that they were the same person, but that Paul was an actual brother, and that Eli just used his name and assumed his identity so that he could play the whole thing off. To me, this would explain the dinner table thing with the father. He was effectively blaming his brother for doing what he did.

The reason I think this is true is because it coincides thematically with the imposter brother that Daniel kills. I sort of assumed that the real Paul had left the town and that Eli took his existence as a means to live a double life. Even to the end when he starts his own company.

Did you all think that Daniel was hip to the scam the whole time? Did you think he was lying about his son being an orphan?

It did remind me of No Country tone wise, but to me it is not near the film that No Country for Old Men is. Props to Paul Thomas Anderson for getting out of his own way and just making a film.

I'm interested to see what he does next.


This really seems plausible to me on the whole Eli/Paul thing. Eli may have used the fact he had an identical twin who was out of town to his advantage and therefore impersonate him in that early scene when he lets Daniel Plainview know about the oil on the land.
Post Fri Feb 22, 2008 10:06 am
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ADhere
n3wb 4 life


Joined: 23 Aug 2004
Posts: 2264
Location: chicago
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invisiblewindow wrote:
film = future classic


I agree.

Its going to take a few years to really appreciate the magnitude of this movie.
Post Fri Feb 22, 2008 10:46 am
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