The Tree of Life (2011)

The Films in My Life (OnCriterion)


#942 The Tree of Life

2011 // USA // Terrence Malick

Criterion Collection (LINK)

Mr. O’Brien (Brad Pitt): ‘Toscanini once recorded a piece 65 times. You know what he said when he finished? “It could be better.”’ 

The sound of waves cresting. A Man’s whisper, soft and relaxed. A stream of light, or a fire, flickering against total darkness. The gate is opened, I stepped into the world of The Tree of Life, or should I say it engulfed me, wrapped me, assimilated me completely in joy and sadness, with grace and shame, beyond abstraction and infinity. It’s not merely a film, nor an art. It’s an experience, integrated into a part of my life, and my soul.


The choir singing with angelic music, the voice of mother (Jessica Chastain) gently explained ‘there were two ways through life – the way of nature and the way of grace. You have to…

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