Philip Seymour Hoffman

Genius and Addiction: Creative Fuel or Speedway to Self-Destruction?

Benjamin Wright

We, as a society, feel a certain loss when we lose prematurely great actors like Philip Seymour Hoffman, comic geniuses like John Belushi, music legends like Jimi Hendrix, Keith Moon and Janis Joplin, and brilliant poets like Dylan Thomas who open up our understanding of our world. But, it is also very possible that these figures, all geniuses in their own right, may never have fully realized their potential if not for their use of mind-expanding substances. It is likely that their addictions fanned the flames of their creative genius. 

‘The Master,’ ‘Chasing Mavericks’ Arrive on DVD, Blu-ray

Forrest Hartman

“The Master” was at the center of the Academy Awards race, having received a best actor nomination for its star, Joaquin Phoenix, and supporting actor nods for co-stars Philip Seymour Hoffman and Amy Adams. While the performances are unquestionably fine, it’s hard to get behind the movie as a whole because of its wandering plot and unlikable characters. 

Paul Thomas Anderson and the Perplexing Genius of ‘The Master’

Christopher Karr

Paul Thomas Anderson’s latest film, “The Master,” is his most consciously esoteric movie to date. As the scenes add up, you have a growing suspicion that you’re missing something. Or that something is missing. I’m still not completely sure which is the case. All I can say is that the movie invokes the same experience as a queasy-strange nightmare that gradually churns to a haunting, perplexing conclusion. 

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