This is not a feel-good movie. But it is a master class in acting. It is a haunting fictional story that is all too true. As with great writing, it takes us into the labyrinth of human nature, rife with emotional hunger, desperation and rage.
In Paul Thomas Anderson's latest film, "The Master" (his sixth), not only does he go out on a limb, but he allows two of our finest actors--Joaquin Phoenix and Philip Seymour Hoffman--to hang precariously from that limb with him.