The year is 1950. Lancaster Dodd (Philip Seymour Hoffman) has founded a new religious philosophy based on the notion that we can all be free of "past trauma" if we recognize that man is not an animal but rather a soul that lived through trillions of years and thousands of lifetimes. But if that's true, how do you explain Freddie Quell (Joaquin Phoenix), whose back is so hunched, whose shoulders are so narrow, and whose arms hang so low to the ground that he looks like some missing link between man and beast. He walks upright, but unsteadily, as if he just learned how to do it. If anyone ever evolved from apes, it's Freddie Quell. And recently.
Quell, who wanders into Dodd's life in a drunken stupor and becomes his confidant, assistant, photographer, and unofficial bodyguard, doesn't just look like an animal; he behaves like one, lashing out anyone who threatens Dodd with the ferocity of a caged tiger. Most of the members of Dodd's movement called him "The Master" because he is the head of their religion. When Quell calls Dodd "Master" it sounds different. Their relationship is as much teacher and pupil as attack dog and owner.
That relationship forms the core of Paul Thomas Anderson's remarkable new film 'The Master,' which is less about the origins of Scientology -- although Dodd is an undeniable analogue for L. Ron Hubbard, the man who invented the infamous religion -- than about the push and pull between these two men.
It seems fairly obvious to anyone with a functioning brain that Paul Thomas Anderson's upcoming film 'The Master' is, in part, based on Scientology and its creator, L. Ron Hubbard. Unfortunately for Anderson, Scientologists are unhappy with this portrayal and they're railing against the film.
We've gotten a teaser and a trailer from Paul Thomas Anderson's upcoming film 'The Master,' but we were sold on the intriguing concept long before that. Now the film has a rather alluring official poster in preparation for its impending release.
There's been a flurry of news about Paul Thomas Anderson's 'The Master' recently, as it had its release date bumped up, and it's joined a number of festivals. But though we know the broad outlines of the film (and rumored Scientology bashing), we're happy the film has release more stills so we can look at its actors.
Easily one of our most-anticipated films due out in the second half of the year, Paul Thomas Anderson’s ‘The Master’ has been dishing out clues to the suspenseful trip audiences can expect to take once the drama reaches theaters in October. Joaquin Phoenix starred in that first clip, drenched in mood but showing us very little. His ‘Master’ co-star Philip Seymour Hoffman takes center stage in the next teaser, and if this doesn’t have you salivating for Anderson’s latest, then nothing will.
Franchise films often cast great actors for small roles. It usually means a big payday for the actor, and it gives the film more credibility. So it's no surprise that 'The Hunger Games: Catching Fire' has offered a role to Philip Seymour Hoffman. But he'd also have to sign on for the sequel...
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