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Tag Archives: 1995

Hard Eight

It was time to ensure that I had seen all of Paul Thomas Anderson’s films, so I went back to his first feature film, Hard Eight. Philip Baker Hall plays Sydney, a well-off gambler who chances upon John (John C. Reilly), a bum who is sitting outside a restaurant trying to figure out how to get money for his mother’s funeral. Sydney takes him under his wing and to Vegas where John learns the trade. The film doesn’t have the same sophisticated narrative structure that his later films would have, but what it does have is some really fascinating and …

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