July 9, 2011

Movie Review: The Tree of Life

Terence Malick, I have only just seen my first movie from you, and while I do feel that you are a legitimate artist, I cannot say that I enjoyed this film. I found the movie to be dull, boring, and with an ultimate purpose that I cannot discern. I get the distinct feeling that you have something to say and I am certain that this movie is indeed saying something. The problem is probably more with me either not wanting to try hard enough or just being too dense to get it. Whatever the case may be, this tone poem of a feature did not capture my imagination.

The movie is, of course, Tree of Life. It Malick's fifth feature in the past 38 years, if nothing else, he certainly takes his time in developing his projects. Would it no be nice if more cinematic artists followed suit rather akin jobs just for the paychecks? It would certainly cut down on clutter at the cineplex if nothing else.

The experience of watching Tree of Life I found to be not unlike watching paint dry, albeit pretty paint, but paint nonetheless. It is a slow slog through Malick's expounding on the nature of life and the paths taken to reconcile oneself with the small, in terms of the universe, experiences that have affected him.

A large part of the films early time is spent takin us through an interpretation of how the universe began. Images o space, stars, microscopic cells, water, dinosaurs, and more used to set up the time we spend with the O'Brien family.

The family is headed up by Brad Pitt and Jessica Chastain. The couple have three boys and when he was only nineteen one of the boys dies. How he dies is not important, the fact that he does is, specifically for older brother Jack (played by Sean Penn as an older man and by as a young boy) as this is a big thrust for the film.

Much of this nebulous creation seems to be about Jack and his attempts to have a catharsis regarding his brother's death. This told through a collection of moments, flashbacks, to his youth. We see the way he is raised in snips and pieces through his father's nature of strict discipline and order countered by his mother's grace preaching forgiveness and experiencing the world with eyes open.

This is a movie that I find I respect more in retrospect than I when experiencing it. I still cannot say I liked it, but there is definite beauty in the visuals and the work ha director of photography Emmamuel Lubezki. So much of the footage is achingly beautiful. I just wish that i cared more.

Not Recommended.

Related Posts with Thumbnails


Post a Comment