Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Malick's 'Tree of Life' Premieres at Cannes

Terrence Malick's long awaited film The Tree of Life premiered at Cannes this weekend, with Brad Pitt and Jessica Chastain accompanying the film, while Malick was conspicuously (though predictably) absent. The film received mix reactions from the audience garnering both applause and boos. Though the early written review consensus on Rottentomatoes is overwhelmingly positive, so far. In any case, the boos aren't worrisome to me, especially coming from the crowd at Cannes. Malick's film, from all appearances, looks to be highly philosophical, contemplative, metaphysical and is -- according to all reports -- not driven by narrative. Even if a film of this nature were to be sublimely brilliant one would still expect a smattering of boos from the crowd at Cannes. Though it's of course possible that the film just doesn't live up to the hype. That remains to be seen.

As a Christian I'm particularly interested to see how Malick depicts the creatio ex nihilo event and the subsequent development of life and the cosmos, as well as how he explores the not-un-Christian themes of Nature and Grace and their interplay. Add this to the fact that the film will quite obviously be a dazzling visual spectacle along with Malick's brilliant track record and this is by far my most anticipated film in quite a long time.

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