M+ Cinema Screening Redemption Vouchers, Cinema Screening Vouchers, M+ membership discounts and sponsor discounts are not applicable for this screening.
On an otherwise unremarkable school day, fifteen-year-old child actor Gary meets the snappy Alana during a photoshoot. Despite their age gap, the confident teenager is instantly smitten with the young woman, who is still looking for direction in her twenties. Against her better judgement, Alana befriends Gary, joining him on his entrepreneurial exploits.
Drawing memories from his childhood in Southern California, director Paul Thomas Anderson returns to the familiar setting of the San Fernando Valley in the 1970s. After a career directing films about characters with brooding impulses, Anderson embraces the awkward state in between early adulthood and late childhood, finding joy in the adventures of Licorice Pizza’s star-crossed lovers. The headlining duo, played by Cooper Hoffman—son of the late Philip Seymour Hoffman—and pop rock musician Alana Haim, make their feature film debuts alongside comedic cameos from Hollywood stars including Bradley Cooper, Sean Penn, and Maya Rudolph.
The screening on 8 October will be followed by a post-screening talk in Cantonese with film critic and university lecturer Dr Derek Lam and M+ Assistant Curator of Moving Image Francisco Lo. The talk will focus on the significance of Licorice Pizza in Paul Thomas Anderson’s evolution as an arthouse filmmaker who has close ties to Hollywood.
About the Director
Paul Thomas Anderson (b. 1970, USA) grew up near San Fernando Valley, California. During his high school years, Anderson wrote and directed the short film The Dirk Diggler Story (1988), which became the basis of Boogie Nights (1997), a dark comedy about the San Fernando porn industry in the 1970s. Over the past two decades, he has maintained a strong presence across major festivals and the awards circuit. There Will Be Blood (2007), featuring Daniel Day Lewis, and The Master (2012), starring Philip Seymour Hoffman, received widespread critical acclaim.
Image at top: Paul Thomas Anderson. Licorice Pizza, 2021. Photo: Courtesy of Universal Pictures (Hong Kong) Limited