Phantom Thread

Rated 5.0

Fractured masculinity and daddy obsessions have served as thematic pillars of the cinema of Paul Thomas Anderson ever since he debuted with Hard Eight in 1996. But before the formula grew untenable and stale, the control freak Anderson veered off track with his cosmically shaggy detective story Inherent Vice in 2014. Anderson serves as his own director of photography on the impeccably groomed yet quietly unsettling fashion world romance Phantom Thread, and he also created his first true female protagonist (there’s even a mommy obsession in the mix). As the demanding 1950s fashion designer Reynolds Woodcock, the excellent Daniel Day-Lewis may get top billing, but the film belongs to Vicky Krieps as Alma, a beach town waitress who enters Reynolds’ orbit. Phantom Thread often plays like a reverse Taming of the Shrew, with Alma determined to preserve her position in the House of Woodcock by cutting Reynolds down to size.