PT Anderson Movies

Friday, January 7, 2011 at 10:56 am

PT Anderson movies have a distinctive style. Take the opening three-minute shot in Boogie Nights, for example, or his constant use of popular music to set the tone. His ensemble casts always portray fragile characters driven to the end of their rope. Other examples of PT Anderson’s distinctive style include his ever-moving camera, characters dealing with isolation and desperation, and his tendency to use the same performers again and again.

Even as a kid, PT Anderson knew he wanted to make movies. Influenced by directors Robert Altman and Martin Scorsese, he made a half-hour mockumentary about a faded porn star (The Dirk Diggler Story). He was still in high school. Then it was off to college, but he soon wound up leaving higher education behind to work as a production assistant on music videos and game shows. Then he hit the big time with Boogie Nights.

Below, I’ve included a complete list of all full-length PT Anderson movies. His works as a music video director are also listed. If you enjoy films that are epic in scope and filled with multi-layered characters, then this self-taught director warrants a look.

If your local video store doesn’t carry all of these titles, Netflix does.

Hard Eight (also known as Sydney) (1996) – The first full-length feature from PT Anderson, Hard Eight stars Philip Baker Hall as Sydney, a gambler in the 1960s who befriends a young man, John (John C. Reilly), who he finds sitting outside of a diner. Fast forward a few years, and John is now the understudy of Sydney and in love with a part-time prostitute named Clementine (Gwyneth Paltrow). But John also has a friend named Jimmy (Samuel L. Jackson), a man who threatens to expose a dark secret about Sydney’s past. Melora Walters co-stars as a hooker, and Philip Seymour Hoffman turns up as a craps player.

Boogie Nights (1997) – Nominated for three Academy Awards, this gritty look at the porn industry in the late ‘70s and early ‘80s revived the career of Burt Reynolds and put aspiring actor Mark Wahlberg on the map. Wahlberg is Dirk Diggler, a none-too-bright California youth who makes a splash in the adult film business thanks to his good looks and massive trouser snake. But all the sex and drugs come with a price, and Dirk soon finds his life spiraling out of control. Julianne Moore is excellent as a porn star in a bitter custody battle with her ex-husband, Burt Reynolds is the director who views each film as a work of art, and Philip Seymour Hoffman stands out as a gay boom operator who’s head over heels in love with Dirk. The stellar ensemble cast also features Heather Graham, Thomas Jane, John C. Reilly, Don Cheadle, William H. Macy, Melora Walters, Alfred Molina, Ricky Jay, and real-life porn star Nina Hartley.

Magnolia (1999) – PT Anderson helms a massive undertaking that interconnects nine individual stories during the course of the film. Set in the San Fernando Valley, Magnolia focuses on Frank T.J. Mackey (Tom Cruise), a misogynist self-help guru with serious daddy issues; Officer Jim Kurring (John C. Reilly), a lonely cop looking for love; Linda Partridge (Julianne Moore), a trophy wife dealing with her husband’s terminal illness; Phil Parma (Philip Seymour Hoffman), a kindly nurse caring for a dying man; Jimmy Gator (Philip Baker Hall), a dying TV host seeking to reconcile with his daughter; and “Quiz Kid” Donnie Smith (William H. Macy), a child quiz show star whose life has went to hell in adulthood. Like most Paul Thomas Anderson movies, this work differs from the average Hollywood film thanks to the long, complicated shots and intricate storylines. Anderson would later be quoted as saying, “Magnolia is, for better or worse, the best movie I’ll ever make.”

Punch-Drunk Love (2002) – Judd Apatow has cited this Adam Sandler drama as one of his all-time favorites, and Anderson would receive the Best Director award at the 2002 Cannes Film Festival. Sandler gets serious as Barry Egan, a short-fused toilet plunger salesman whose life is mercilessly dominated by his seven bitchy sisters. When he falls for the quirky co-worker (Emily Watson) of one of his siblings, he’s soon drawn into a strange and frequently maddening world filled with duplicitous phone sex operators, foul-mouthed mattress salesmen (Philip Seymour Hoffman), and abandoned harmoniums. A major departure for funnyman Sandler, he would unfortunately follow it up with roles in Eight Crazy Nights, The Hot Chick, and Anger Management.

There Will Be Blood (2007) – Nominated for eight Academy Awards (winning Best Actor and Best Cinematography), There Will Be Blood is loosely based on the novel Oil! by Upton Sinclair. Regarded by many critics as the best film of the ‘00s, it stars Daniel Day-Lewis as Daniel Plainview, a ruthless oilman seeking to make a fortune by drilling in Little Boston, California. But conmen, self-serving preachers (Paul Dano), and adopted children plague him every step of the way, allowing Day-Lewis plenty of opportunities to chew the scenery. A powerful film about the corrupting nature of greed, There Will Be Blood is a modern masterpiece. If nothing else, watch the final scene in which Day-Lewis delivers his famous (and hilarious) “milkshake” speech.

The following is a list of music videos directed by PT Anderson. The bulk of them are for Fiona Apple, the singer he dated for a number of years.

The next time you’re in the mood for John C. Reilly, Philip Seymour Hoffman, or Melora Walters, check out the PT Anderson movies available from Netflix. They’ll drop them right in your mailbox, or you can choose to simply stream them over your PC or MAC. We do get a small commission when you sign up through our site, but it costs you nothing extra and helps keep us in business.

See also:

  1. Wes Anderson Movies
  2. Brant Sersen Interview
  3. Famous Film Directors
  4. Judd Apatow Movies
  5. Robert Aldrich Movies
  6. Carmike Cinemas Coupons
  7. United Artists Coupons

This entry was posted on Friday, January 7th, 2011 at 10:56 am and is filed under Good Movies. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.


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