P.T. Anderson's The Master has us all hot and bothered with antcipation here at GTBP, especially Craig Dietz who will review the film this week. We're not the only ones either. The early reviews are spectacular matching its critical acclaim. So, when the Scientology based drama premiered in five locations in NY and LA last weekend it shattered box-office records for limited release films, according to Deadline.
Let's just say Moonrise Kingdom, which opened with an astounding $130, 749 in a limited run has nothing on its new "Master". The estimated per-theater average was $145, 949, leading us to believe the wide release this Friday could be much bigger than usual. Both the films stars, Phillip Seymour Hoffman and Joaquin Phoenix are already being showered with pre-Oscar buzz for their performances, especially Phoenix's under-the-radar, when compared to Hoffman, turn as unstable Navy veteran Freddie Quell.
If you haven't seen the trailer for The Master, like the one below, Freddie Quell is struggling to find his way in a post-war world. This search leads him into meeting an intellectual man of many talents, Lancaster Dodd a.k.a The Master who takes the young man under his wing and convinces him to join his religious organization called the Cause. Anyhow, that's my interpretation of the premise. Feel free to correct me, if I'm wrong.
The Master has wowed audiences in Venice, Toronto, New York and Los Angeles thus far, and breaking the box-office record over the weekend is a great sign of things to come. Whether it can open as well as Anderson's There Will Be Blood ($40.2 million) remains to be seen, though I'm certainly counting on it. However, it's a crowded field of new releases this Friday, so The Master will have its work cut out for it.