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This is Paul Hirsch

Paul Hirsch

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Phantom Thread – Unraveled

This is a sad movie for two reasons. First, it is Daniel Day Lewis’s final film. Second, it is garbage.

This is an art film. Do not expect it to be filled with intrigue, suspense or action. That said, a good film premise, great writing and great acting can make the most subtle movie worth watching or even a masterpiece. Unfortunately, this movie falls short in almost all regards.

It is a story about people who are not quite broken enough to care about them, telling a love story that’s not quite worth telling.

(mild spoilers ahead)

I understand this movie. I get the premise, and I get the point. I understand the main character Mr. Woodcock could not be happy because he insisted on having control over every aspect of hisĀ  life (with his sister as his creepy life coordinator). I get that Alma (the love interest) needed to give him a way to give up control in a manner where he could fully hand it over (by rendering him helpless) and have some temporary peace as a result, which is the catalyst for his and Alma’s strange and broken love. I get the nuances of the tale. It’s just not a tale worth getting.

If there’s any silver lining, it is Lewis’s performance. He does a masterful job of playing his character, even if his character wasn’t particularly interesting. You can appreciate his brilliance in his role, just not the role itself.

If a movie isn’t going to be entertaining, at least it needs to be important. If it’s not important, at least it needs to be moving; it needs to touch us in a human way. If it’s not going to be moving, at least it could have a gimmick that keeps our attention. That wouldn’t make it good, but at least it would be watchable. A great movie will often have a few of these characteristics. This movie has none. It wasn’t entertaining. It wasn’t important. I wasn’t touched. It was one thing – sad, not because of it’s story, but because this is the last we will see of Lewis on screen.

It’s unfortunate his final movie couldn’t be as interesting as he is talented.