The Master

Movie review by S. Jhoanna Robledo, Common Sense Media
The Master Poster Image

Common Sense says

age 17+

Intense, evocative drama examines faith, compulsion.

R 2012 136 minutes

Parents say

age 17+

Based on 6 reviews

Kids say

age 15+

Based on 5 reviews

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Community Reviews

age 17+

Long, boring creepy movie with a lot of sex and drinking.

This was a really weird movie and very boring, over two hours. We were ready to walk out then it finally ended. There is a lot of nudity, sex, hand job and masturbation scene, drug and alcohol and The Master is gay who keeps a young man around him who is clearly very troubled and violent. Amy Admas didn't have a big part in the movie, I would of liked to see her more. The movie is very talky and slow. The characters are creepy. It takes place in the early 50'sand the costumes were exactly like that time. This really made me see how cults work with the minds of the lost. I read the master was L. Ron Hubbard and the character of Joaquin was Maschive who was a high school,drop out and hung around Hubbard in the 70's. Joaquin did a great job playing this creepy lost violent young man. I had a few nightmares about this movie for a few days afterwards. Don't bring children at all.

This title has:

Great messages
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
1 person found this helpful.
age 18+

The Master – Is In Need Of A Master

It’s become trendy to make movies about subjects that go all out to either shock and offend or challenge the viewer to stay awake to see if they add up to anything worthwhile – And this movie-maker has settled in to provide it all. Writer, producer, director, Paul Thomas Anderson fits well into Harvey Weinstein’s formula of movie perversion. If you've ever wondered what a movie might be like that's written and directed by a self-confessed cocaine user, under-aged pornography addict, as well as being, Quote; “my favorite filmmaker copycat” - then this could be getting close to realizing your dream (perhaps it might also sadly sum up cinema today along with certain audiences) It doesn’t really matter if Anderson based his screen story on the life of Scientology’s Ron L Hubbard, as some have claimed, for the whole exercise depends on whatever the viewer is prepared to make of it. Here we have a story where the ‘master’ has become ‘infatuated’ (as some interpret it) with one of life’s deranged social psychopaths - Why, is only hinted at and never explained, leading to a rather ambiguous dead end. On the way to establish what the ‘masters’ message might be, the movie-maker indulges in his trademark perversions, illicit boozy concoctions made up of lighter fluid, photo fixer chemicals, Paint Thinner, alcohol mixers, and whatever else takes his fancy - gratuitous female full frontal nudity (for no valid reason to the story) even grotty public masturbation, all presented in assorted unresolved violent actions, or outlandish situations. This invites over the top praise from the festival crowd and critics who salivate at every vulgar turn as if they have discovered a new anti-hero. Some of these critics even admit to watching the film several times and still not understanding what it’s about (tells us much). Some even claim Anderson as the new Orson Welles, and looking back on that career, after ‘Kane’, how much else did Welles ever produce that was finished or successful? It should also be noted; for ‘Kane’, the studio supplied Welles with some of the industry’s top professionals to help him over the line - from there, it was all downhill. Those that like to lay claim to understanding the meanings within these ambiguous grotty works, often argue that anyone who doesn’t appreciate them is only capable of understanding simple action fare. How wrong they are - the fact these movies rarely make a return on their costs - should speak volumes about how unsupported by a discerning public they are. Performances are powerful but sometimes come across as actor abuse; I could imagine Mr. Hoffman and co might have needed respite care after these grueling sessions. Also, the hard-working Mr. Phoenix’s verbal delivery, unfortunately, is too often unable to be understood. The best aspect to shine through might be the Cinematographer Mihai Malaimare Jr, shooting on 65mm film -again for no truly good reason- as this in turn is mostly wasted on many internal locations. Summary; For a limited adult audience or perhaps, for health’s sake, keep this out of your head.

This title has:

Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking

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