Boogie Nights (1997)

I have a friend who doesn’t have a job, so this would really work for him.

In the San Fernando Valley in 1977, a young teenager, Eddie Adams (Mark Wahlberg) is trying to find himself in life and is hired as a busboy in a nightclub. All of a sudden, things really start to change for Eddie because he becomes discovered by porn director, Jack Horner (Burt Reynolds). Horner is not only a big shot around town, but just so happens to be the best porn director in the industry. Jack convinces Eddie to come and work for him, and then shortly turns him into adult-film sensation with the name of Dirk Diggler. Brought into a circle of friends, including fellow actors Amber Waves (Julianne Moore), Rollergirl (Heather Graham) and Reed Rothchild (John C. Reilly), Dirk really starts to fulfill all of his ambitions. The problem is, fame starts to really go to his head and drugs and an egotistic attitude start to control his life.

Here’s a movie that came out quite a long time ago, but it happens to be one I very much enjoy, so I figured why not write a review about it? Everybody know’s about Boogie Nights and the great work that Paul Thomas Anderson has doe here. This movie is what really turned me into a fan of what he does. With Boogie Nights, he pretty much just blows you away and presents you with what could easily be the best piece of work he has to offer. Almost everything about this movie is a joy to watch. Especially the writing and acting, which is then followed by a terrific soundtrack. Another great thing about this movie is that it never makes you lose interest. Nothing about this movie is boring or dull. There is always some comedy, but it never loses its strong dramatic sequences. It’s also just a real fun movie to watch.

The acting is pretty great, but how could it not be with an all-star cast like this. I mean look at the lineup. Marky Mark, Julianne Moore, Phillip Seymour Hoffman. All of these people are great at what they do and you really see it in Boogie Nights. At the time, this was probably Mark Wahlberg’s best performance to date. What he did in this movie really shocked a lot of people and I think he proved that he can do a lot more work and play these larger roles. Burt Reynolds had to be my favorite in this movie though. I just thought his character was great and I always wanted to see him. Even William H. Macy was really good. The amount of incredible actors that are in this movie is ridiculous. That is something I love to see out of a movie. When you have a good cast like this, it can only work out well for you.

Maybe I am wrong, but I feel like PT Anderson does not get the recognition he deserves as a director, especially for this movie. I think this may actually be his best work he has ever done and that guy has directed a lot of stuff I enjoy. With Boogie Nights, you may feel like you have watched movies similar to it, and you think to yourself that there was nothing special about it. I don’t feel that way at all. I think Boogie Nights tries something different, and not only does it succeed, but it becomes an instant classic of the 90s. Even the screenplay is something that needs to be talked about. With a script like that, it absolutely deserved to win the Oscar, but the Academy often likes to piss us off. If you are hesitant about watching this because of the strong, graphic material, don’t be because it really is an excellent film.

Overall, Boogie Nights delivers in ways that really impress you. With a terrific cast, fantastic directing, and a phenomenal screenplay, Boogie Nights becomes an iconic movie of the 90s.

Grade: A


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