The Masters: 30 Best Paul Thomas Anderson Actors

From 'Hard Eight' to 'Inherent Vice,' we've ranked the MVPs of PTA's movies

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11. Katherine Waterston

Waterston doesn't have that big a part in Inherent Vice: She's AWOL for most of the movie. But as Doc Sportello's former lover Shasta, she has to do a deceptive amount of heavy lifting, and hers is the true breakout performance of the film.. Her first appearance is tender, yet haunted, suggesting something is wrong; when her character initially disappears, the memory of that early scene persists. When Doc later sees her in a flashback to a better time, she's vibrant, beautiful – the very picture of the innocent, first-flush of love. When she reappears near the end, however, we sense that something has changed – that this beautiful woman has seen and done things that we can't quite imagine. The actress then delivers an impossibly seductive monologue – about how invisible and powerless she felt in her rich businessman boyfriend's presence — that's one of the most unsettling scenes Anderson has ever shot.

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