Watch The Trailer
Storyline (warning: spoilers)
Reynolds Woodcock (Day-Lewis) is an acclaimed fashion designer and “confirmed bachelor”. It seems every woman wants to wear his beautiful dresses whether they are members of the royal family or high-profile socialites. Cyril Woodcock (Manville) is his hard working sister who acts as both his business manager and personal assistant. She takes care of all the awkward, messy stuff so as not to disrupt her brother’s creative freedom. Alma Elson (Krieps) is the newest arrival in the household and the latest in Reynolds’ revolving turnstile of girlfriends. Unlike others, she isn’t afraid to stand up to Reynolds and she becomes a trusted, valuable muse.
Phantom Thread is an engrossing character study as we watch all three individuals try to gain the upper hand in his curious household. The power changes throughout and you’re never quite sure how it will all end up. I’m being cryptic regarding the narrative as it’s the kind of movie where the less you know going in, the better.
Reynolds is such a fascinating person. He comes across as so calm but also so intimidating. You never know what he’s thinking which is quite scary. It’s hard to pick a highlight but there are some great scenes shared around the breakfast table that illustrate the power struggle whilst also providing a few laughs when it comes to “breakfast etiquette”.
Paul Thomas Anderson’s Phantom Thread, nominated for six Oscars, is a masterpiece – his second, in my opinion, alongside Boogie Nights. With plenty to digest upon leaving the theatre, Phantom Thread is another feather in the cap for Paul Thomas Anderson.