Daniel Plainview is a new messiah, bringing bread, education, and wealth. Daniel Plainview is a Satan, an accuser, a murderer, a liar, and a drinker of blood. Both Christ and Antichrist, Daniel Plainview, embodies America, our industrialism and our greed, our benevolence and our violence. One part Flannery O’Connor, one part Rene’ Girard, passing Upton Sinclair through St. John’s gospel, Paul Thomas Anderson orchestrates a film that captures the American zeitgeist, that recapitulates our founding, this time in Little Boston, and the tea party replayed with Texas tea.
[There Will Be Spoilers]