Director Paul Thomas Anderson and star Daniel Day-Lewis reteam, after 2007's brilliant There Will Be Blood, for this Best Picture Academy Award nominee set in the fashion world of 1950s post-war London. Once again, Anderson and Day-Lewis are nominated for Oscars as is Lesley Manville for her supporting role.
Renowned dressmaker Reynolds Woodcock (Day-Lewis) and his sister Cyril (Manville) are at the centre of British fashion, dressing royalty, movie stars, heiresses, socialites, debutants and dames with the distinct style of The House of Woodcock. Women come and go through Woodcock’s life, providing the confirmed bachelor with inspiration and companionship, until he comes across a young, strong-willed woman, Alma (Vicky Krieps), who soon becomes a fixture in his life as his muse and lover.
Paul Thomas Anderson’s latest explores his usual preoccupations - unconventional families, toxic father figures, cloistered creators - and has received the usual nominations for awards it won’t win. But it’s a much chillier proposition than the likes of Boogie Nights, Magnolia or There Will Be Blood.
An impossible love affair rendered in impeccable detail, "Phantom Thread" beguiles as it confounds while articulating a universal truth: Nobody can possibly fathom the inner workings of other people's relationships.
Paul Thomas Anderson and Daniel Day Lewis, both in peak form, use the fashion world to tackle the agony and euphoria of creation. Taking full measure of Phantom Thread may require more than one viewing. Our advice for now: just sit back and behold.