What You Need To Know - June 15, 2018

Phantom Thread: What You Need To Know
by James
James
by James hmv London, Bio "Like the legend of the Phoenix, I've just eaten a whole packet of chocolate HobNobs..." Editor, hmv.com

Phantom Thread: What You Need To Know

If you're a fan of Daniel Day Lewis then you'll no doubt already be painfully aware that the multi-Oscar winning actor made a shock announcement last year to the effect that, after one more film, the actor will be hanging up his boots and retiring from the silver screen. 

The film in question is Phantom Thread, which arrived in cinemas at the beginning of the year and is due to land in stores on Monday (June 18th). Here's everything you need to know...

 

Who's in it?

Alongside Day Lewis is a cast that includes Vicky Krieps, Lesley Manville, Brian Gleeson and Julia Davis

 

And who's directing?

Paul Thomas Anderson, the director responsible for films such as Boogie Nights and Inherent Vice, is the man tasked with directing Daniel Day Lewis for the last time. Anderson has, of course, worked with Day Lewis before on his 2007 film There Will Be Blood.

 

What's the plot?

The story is set in London in the mid-1950s and revolves around a dressmaker and couturier named Reynolds Woodcock (Day Lewis), a man whose obsessive and fastidious nature has made him one of the most sought-after dressmakers in London, running his own business alongside his sister, Cyril (Manville) and supplying clothing to all manner of high society types, from movie stars to royalty. Those same qualities, however, also make Reynolds difficult to work with and his staff are often subjected to his obnoxious and abusive behaviour.

Reynolds, meanwhile, is struggling to come to terms with the death of his mother and often stitches hidden messages into the linings of his dresses. After completing a commission for a wealthy client he travels to a restaurant in the countryside to have dinner, where he meets and becomes besotted with a waitress named Alma (Krieps). He asks her out on a date, which she accepts, and the two become romantically involved, with Alma eventually agreeing to move into Reynolds' London home, where she becomes his assistant and muse, as well as his lover.

Soon, however, Reynolds begins behaving in his usual manner towards Alma as well as everyone else, and while his sister Cyril is initially mistrustful of Alma she comes to respect her hard work. Alma however is determined to establish control of her relationship with Reynolds and to do so she decides to take drastic measures.

 

Does it deliver?

Whether or not this really does end up being the last time we see Daniel Day Lewis on the big screen, his performance here is as nuanced, intense and magnetic as ever and if this is the way he rounds off his career it'll be a fitting conclusion to his time as an actor.

There are also some great performances from the rest of film's impressive cast, particularly Lesley Manville's turn as Reynolds' sister Cyril. Anderson's films can sometimes be an acquired taste, but the working relationship he has enjoyed with Day Lewis has produced some of his best work and that's certainly the case with Phantom Thread.

 

 

Phantom Thread is available in hmv stores from Monday June 18th - you can also find it here in our online store...

Phantom Thread
Phantom Thread Paul Thomas Anderson

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