While some have suggested that this is nothing more than a veiled Scientology screed (it has many allusions to the bizarre religion's earliest earmarks), The Master is actually a movie about two men who couldn't be more different, and yet are almost exactly the same
They’re called inner demons for a reason. Unlike the true mythic minions from Hell, who haunt us in moments of moral weakness, these creatures contradict our very human being. They destroy our psyche, contravene everything we believe about ourselves and our place in the world. Through exorcists like therapy and drugs, we try to rid ourselves of their unholy power, but in most cases, the efforts are for naught - or worse, complicated and ongoing. So when something like The Cause comes along, offering the promise of both freedom from said devils and continued clarity within one’s mind, it’s allure is incalculable. Toss in the spellbinding speciousness of a leader like Lancaster Dodd and you’ve got a cult waiting for its fodder. Someone like Freddie Quell fills that role quite effectively.