Studio Synopsis: A 1950s-set drama centered on the relationship between a charismatic intellectual known as “The Master” (Philip Seymour Hoffman) a WWII veteran who creates a belief system which catches on with other lost souls - and a young drifter (Joaquin Phoenix) who becomes his right-hand man.
Studio: Anchor Bay
Running Time: 138 minutes
Number of Disks: 1
- “Back Beyond”: outtakes and additional scenes with music by Jonny Greenwood
- “Unguided Message”: 8 minute short behind the scenes look
- “Let There Be Light” (1946): John Huston’s landmark documentary about WWII veterans
Full of disturbing imagery, uncomfortable situations and enough enigmatic happenings to confound even the most diligent followers of film, “The Master” slathers on thick layer after thick layer of exacerbating confusion, all masked and mended by the wonderfully crafted talents of an excellent cast. And while Hoffman, Phoenix and Adams all give performances worthy of their recent Oscar nominations, especially Hoffman and Phoenix, whose roles seem almost tailor-made for their uniquely gifted styles, don’t be at all surprised or disheartened if much of the material has you head-scratching away. Like the many awkward scenes that litter the picture, the film revels in its ability to disturb and distract and will surely do so for any lured into frame based on performers alone. But for those who flock to the art-house oasis known as Indie, or your loyalties lie rooted enough with the cast, the tackled conundrums and cryptic messages stands to add that much more to “The Master’s” entertainment allure. Depending on your drive for the films material, the extras menu offers either further confusion, or added attraction, with some standard offerings and a few key musts. Huston’s delving documentary “Let There Be Light” paints a disturbing almost hour long picture of WWII soldiers stricken with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). This documentary does shed quite a light on Phoenix’s Quell and could very well be considered food for thought even before viewing the feature film. Other standout features include, “Back Beyond” outtakes, which is more of a stitched together deleted, extended, and outtakes reel uniquely edited together to form a collage of sorts for the films cut scenes, and a wandering “Unguided Message” behind the scenes look that explores many of the locales and sets of the film. Standard fare consists of the films theatrical trailer, which is also included. So with an ultra convoluted conveyance that’s masterfully hidden by brilliant performance, “The Master” may indeed leave most feeling like a novice.
Central Cast: Joaquin Phoenix | Philip Seymour Hoffman | Amy Adams | Laura Dern | Amy Ferguson
Director: Paul Thomas Anderson
Central Writers: Paul Thomas Anderson
Theatrical Release: September 21, 2012
Blu-Ray/DVD Release: February 26, 2013
Supporting Cast and more Writers found HERE