Thursday, June 30, 2011

The Tree of Life (2011)

Director: Terrence Malick. Cast: Brad Pitt, Sean Penn, Jessica Chastain, Hunter McCracken. 139 min. Rated PG-13. Drama.

Is it OK to call a movie "good" ... even if you're lost after watching it? Tree of Life leaves you with a sense of having watched something magnificent, without knowing why. This beautiful tapestry of images, almost devoid of a story, has a timeline spanning from the pre-historic era to the 50's Texas of a patriarchal Brad Pitt - all centered on the death of his 19-year old son. So the best comparison would be Kubrick's 2001, accompanied by Malick's own hypnotic style. As a definite discussion-maker, this should be watched with friends, and only in a theater.

PS #1: You may curse me for saying this, but I believe this movie deserved its Palm d'Or at the this year's Cannes Film Festival, just for being so audaciously different.

PS #2: Maybe you can start your discussion with this NPR review by Bob Mondello.

Mo says:


  1. I'm sorry but I realy could not understand the point .. it was the first time in my lif , while watching a movie, getting bored and forwarding it to the end... it seemed like galaxy special pictures instead of a subject....

  2. One of my friends said: this movie was like a near-3-hour screensaver!

    Maybe because I was sitting in the theater and forced to sit through the entire movie (with no ability to fast-forward!), I was able to enjoy it. If you watch "The Thin Red Line", or "The New World", you'll see that's how Terence Malick's style is: he uses visuals and a slow rhythm to put you into a hympnotic, meditative state. Because there's really not much story happening in his movies.