Capital Celluloid 2021 — Day 67: Thu Jul 22

Magnolia (Anderson, 1999): Prince Charles Cinema, 8pm

This 35mm screening (also showing on July 27th) is part of the Paul Thomas Anderson season at Prince Charles Cinema. You can find all the details here.

Time Out review:
Anderson's meandering multi-story megasoap with a message is over-ambitious, self-conscious, self-indulgent, self-important and clumsy into the bargain. But it's also one of the most enthralling and exhilarating American movies in ages. Much in the style of Nashville and Short Cuts (though lacking Altman's light touch), this intimate epic charts the various fortunes, over a day or so, of various individuals living in the San Fernando Valley - including the dying Earl (Jason Robards), his young wife Linda (Julianne Moore), and his nurse Phil (Philip Seymour Hoffman); Frank Mackey (Tom Cruise), prophet of machismo; and numerous people associated, past or present, with a TV quiz show - whose paths cross by design, destiny, chance or coincidence. Insofar as the film is about 'story', little happens save that Anderson initially conceals information, and then slowly scatters snippets so that we can piece the jigsaw together. For all the humour, it's a dark portrait of loss, lovelessness and fear of failure in contemporary America, and not a film that trades in understatement. As the lost souls make their way towards - what? - redemption? - a deus ex machina plot development occurs, as contrived, ludicrous, bold and grandly imaginative as any Biblical flood or plague.
Geoff Andrew

Here (and above) is the trailer.

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