There Will Be Blood : Is the ending flawed?

Is the ending flawed?

I consider There Will Be Blood to be a flawed masterpiece. While the film is beautifully shot and much of it is well-written, I would also argue that its ending is uneven. After Plainview disparages H. W. as a "bastard from a basket", the two are shown younger, in a time when their relationship was positive. This is likely Plainview's memory, in which case we can assume that Day-Lewis's character has not lost his humanity – that he still has the capacity for love of others (in this case, his son). Yet Plainview violently murders Eli, making the former a monster. This is a storytelling misstep, to my mind. I believe that Anderson was unsuccessful in deciding whether he wanted Plainview to be a Kane or a Corleone – that is, whether he wanted the main character's arc to be one from a tycoon to a disappointed man or from a tycoon into a heartless sociopath.

I am not the only one who took issue with the final scene of this work. The late Roger Ebert said, for example, that the ending of There Will Be Blood is one of the instances in which "we may see [the film's] reach exceeding its grasp." In the Sacramento Bee, Carla Meyer argued that the final scene marks when the work "stops being a masterpiece and becomes a really good movie. What was grand becomes petty, then overwrought."

What do you think? I still consider There Will Be Blood to be a major work, but is Plainview's sociopathic final action really consistent with his remaining capacity for emotion?

My list of the greatest modern films (in my opinion) can be found here:

Re: Is the ending flawed?

A true cinema masterpiece . No weakness' . The ending was the cherry on top . Loved the final collapse and break down of Daniel . His hatred and malevolence take hold . The list of classic films that ebert had called ' flawed ' or just disliked over the years really makes me question if senility was an issue .