Playtime

EW’s “Inside Movies” columnist Adam Markovitz has posted a Fox Searchlight clip from Terrence Malick‘s The Tree of Life. It’s basically a dreamy suburban yesteryear thing with three kids chasing Jessica Chastain around with a live lizard….the spirited reveries of adolescence, etc.

The Tree of Life was seen and considered and dismissed by the distribution community last year, and it’s going to be screened all over the world concurrent with (or immediately following) the Cannes screening. So seeing it in Cannes isn’t going to feel all that special to anyone who’s flown thousands of miles to be there. I’m nonetheless ready to fall head-over-heels in love. And I can’t wait for the whispered narration passages. I’m also ready to get my hate-on. It’s up to the film. I have no dog in this.

35 thoughts on “Playtime

  1. Shit. (Taking cover from possible Wells Nuclear Retaliation.)

    I just meant that we seem to be discussing it quite a bit, which isn’t at all a bad thing!

    Great piece!

  2. I know the answer is “She’s a Juilliard-trained serious ACTRESS with a capital A,” but the sudden ascension of Jessica Chastain to above-the-poster “star” and leading lady in a Malick movie makes the recent arcs of both Sam Worthington and Bradley Cooper look like two guys coming off a Cruise-in-’83 sleeper streak that had audiences begging for more.

  3. If you want something a little more sophisticated that trods the same infinity-of-time theme, read Look Homeward Angel by Thomas Wolfe.

    Malick is not nearly as deep as he thinks he is.

  4. AL, I wouldn’t worry about Tree of Life becoming the new Social Network. Yeah, Jeffrey is all kinds of obsessed now. But it looks too out there for the Academy, regardless of whether Jeffrey likes it or not. It might get a nom for cinematography or the like, but I can’t see him posting four or five time a day pounding the drum for that award.

  5. Sighh Chastain has that cleft chin thing. I’ve read that the women considered the most beautiful actually have the most androgynous features, and vice versa. I might also be latent.

  6. Nostalgia Porn.

    Is it me or do all the kids looks into the camera like they’re on an episode of The Office?

  7. “…it’s Lubezeki (children of men, the new world, sleepy hollow)”

    He’s good and all, but I always feel like his stuff doesn’t have enough SHEEN. It’s striking in that desaturated, wan, semi-naturalistic gray-drab way, but I think of Luzbeki as more of a camera MOVEMENT guy (Children of Men) than a PAINTER who’s gonna use GRAIN and texture and scratches and filters and lens flares and color timing and BOLD CRAZY COLORS. I prefer DPs like Prieto or Libatique who make it all purple or thick or charcoaly and veneered, like the color canvas of a movie is their palette, rather than just fish-eye lens crazy dolly moves and stuff, which I don’t care about,

    Actually, I kind of prefer Mauro Fiore or, going back a few years, Spike’s one-time guy Malik Sayeed, who doesn’t shoot NEARLY enough; I’m more stoked for the “look” of a movie or “cinematography” when it’s something that looks like 25th Hour or Belly or 8 Mile or Salton Sea or The Island or Collateral or Clockers or Requiem For a Dream or even some of Soderbergh’s stuff, where it’s about temperature changes and levels and blur and stock and grainy craziness and oversaturation and grunge…

    Lubezeki is a little like Roger Deakins in that everyone on message boards has a bone-on for them, like THEY’RE A MASTER THEY’RE THE BEST DP, but I never find their colors that distinctive or crazy, which I find more eye-popping (ugh hate that term) than some crazy angles or depth of field. Like, even the awesome awesome stuff in CHILDREN OF MEN, the one-take stuff, I think of that more as director’s choice than a DP fucking with the colors and making it bold and bright and insane and lighting it all a certain way.

  8. I basically concur, but HOLLOW has its share of painterly moments in a drab way and the school-house scene in CHILDREN OF MEN is absolutely gorgeous. Not to mention the Animals cover recreation which may be a bit on the nose but still so cold.

  9. DiscoNap – Latent Latent Latent!

    a/man – thanks…. he’s good, I especially dig that he doesn’t have a singular “look”… “C. of M.” and “New World” each great looking in their own quite different way…

    Lex… I’ve never felt that the inclusion of a Sheen helps the quality of a film’s look. “Apocalypse Now” looks terrific, but then “Major League” is no great shakes. I think it’s more on who shoots it than it Estevezian quantity.

  10. The Tree of Life was seen and considered and dismissed by the distribution community last year …

    No, it was met with polarized reactions, which includes the ecstatic ones as well.

    I’m not trying to be uber-supportive for this film, just fair.

    I’m nonetheless ready to fall head-over-heels in love. And I can’t wait for the whispered narration passages. I’m also ready to get my hate-on. It’s up to the film. I have no dog in this.

    Just as I may feel you do have a “dog” in this, and that I may be wrong about it, I’m looking forward to learn of your review/reaction to the film.

  11. Belly is pretty much the most incredible looking movie of the 90′s. The story is a mess but it still looks and feels like no other film ever made.

  12. It was supposed to be this sprawling epic black version of goodfellas but they ran out of money and cut huge chunks out of the screenplay so the film doesn’t make much sense.

    It’s almost like if a retarded Terrence Malick made a hood movie. The film is a complete mess but whats on screen is often beautiful and compelling. I can hardly think of a more overlooked film than Belly.

  13. Hype WIlliams has always had that great style, even in his music videos. I don’t think the movie is a complete mess, at least not until it gets to the confusing part where DMX becomes this Nation of Islam Muslim about to assassinate the leader. It felt like a whole 20 minutes should have been there to clarify what that whole thing was about. I still like the movie.

    Sayeed worked on eyes wide shut for whatever its worth.

  14. Catastrophic event….In 3 days without power all the grodery stores will be empty you cant get gasoline because it takes electricty to run the pumps. society will be at a stand still. You saw how long it takes to send in help…….So make up what are called grab-n-go backpacks.carry some supplys the usuall stuff and every pack should have a 45 auto . 1911 pistol with 4 magazines your gonna have to fight your way out but get out fast…..This sounds too crazy even for me HA! HA! sosh forfait sans engagement forfait illimite forfait sms illimite forfait internet forfait bloque rio b and you rio orange rio sfr rio bouygues rio virgin forfait bloque calcul imc

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