There will be Breaking Bad

I watched There Will Be Blood (2007) this evening and I couldn’t stop seeing similarities between Daniel Plainview (played by Daniel Day-Lewis) and Walter White (Bryan Cranston). Obviously there is a big time period difference but Plainview and White have similar character progressions. White begins his descent into the drug world with all intentions of getting money to cover his families expenses once his inoperable cancer takes his life. Plainview is just like anyone in the early 1900’s trying to make money and provide for his family. In the beginning they don’t show signs of greed or manipulation. Since Plainview’s story is only 158 minutes and White’s is over a span of 5 television seasons they progress differently but many similarities were there.
The very famous, so famous I had heard of it long before seeing the movie, “I drink your milkshake” speech reminded me a lot of Walter White telling his wife that he “is the danger” and “is the one who knocks”.

Not to get spoiler-y, because if you are thinking about starting Breaking Bad I don’t want to give everything away, but White’s delivery of the line “I won” at the end of Season 4 is also very reminiscent of Plainview’s “I’m finished” at the end of the film.

Plainview and White both are constantly one step ahead of everyone around them. Breaking Bad has paid homage to many other filmmakers so whether the comparisons between these characters is accidental or not doesn’t matter to me. An article published by Vulture recently outlined the similarities between the show and Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining.

In the very least, as a fan of the show, it made a very good movie that much more entertaining.

Walter White.

Daniel Plainview.

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One Comment on “There will be Breaking Bad”

  1. Lady says:

    I JUST posted this same idea on my facebook–also very similar father/adopted son relationship, where you can’t quite tell if there’s genuine affection or if it’s entirely self serving. I just did a google search to see if anyone else had written about the parallels and found your blog. Good stuff!:)


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