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To paraphrase Leo Tolstoy, “All family gatherings are alike.” That means most holiday visits include inquiries as to why you’re still single, observations about your growing love handles, and comparisons to the cousin with the MBA and the six-figure salary. So why not skip all the questions and instead spend Christmas with Daniel “I drink your milkshake” Plainview, the ultimate family man? Paul Thomas Anderson’s film about turn-of-the-century oil speculators presents family dynamics in a way that will make anyone feel better about being the overweight and underemployed black sheep of the family. Here’s how to best view the film: Dress up in your finest broad-brim hat and smuggle a water bottle filled with one part milk and two parts bourbon into the theater. Find a seat by yourself—which shouldn’t be hard, it’s Christmas Day, for Christ’s sake—then kick back and watch Daniel Day Lewis beat a preacher to death with a bowling pin.
THERE WILL BE BLOOD shows AT 5:40 P.M. AT AFI SILVER Theatre and Cultural Center, 8633 COLESVILLE ROAD, SILVER SPRING. $6–$10. (301) 495-6720.