Tuesday, November 01, 2011
The Tree of Life (Terrence Malick, 2011)
Brad Pitt and Jessica Chastain head a good ol’ Christian style family in Texas. Pitt is the epitome of graft as he trains his songs to fight, build things and generally toughen them up against the big bad world, which he believes will take advantage of you if give it the chance. Jessica Chastain, on the other hand, believes in living life through the way of grace, rather than nature. She tries to put a dampener on her husband’s volatile and bullish behaviour, which often has a detrimental impact on their three songs, not altogether successfully. At a young age, one the sons commits suicides, posing questions of faith, morality and existence to all involved.
And I am trying, really I am, but that is about the only good thing I can say about The Tree of Life. My housemate said “I have absolute no interest in seeing THAT” and I have no idea why I didn’t listen to him, because it is two and a half of my life I shall never get back. Even Alexandre Desplat’s score, which I would normally appreciate (man is a genius), is tainted by the fact that it appears in this Bible Bash of a film, as does his good eye for cinematography (used to such good effect in films that he has made well, namely Days of Heaven and The New World). Want a little taster of Tree of Life? Go to the book of Job, pick a verse, any verse, blast some classical music from your iPod dock and flick through a photoalbum of images of nature. It will be much, much, much more fulfilling than watching this piece of trash film was. If Terrence Malick really loves his God so much, one would have thought God would have blessed him with a slightly better movie.