Into The Abyss

The Olympian indifference and almost comical current of fuck-you nothingness that runs through Terrence Malick‘s To The Wonder, which I saw last night at the Princess of Wales theatre, carries a certain fascination. I was prepared for it, having heard from Ben Affleck in Telluride that it “makes The Tree of Life look like Transformers” and having read the Venice Film Festival reviews. So it was hardly a shock to encounter a wispy, ethereal thing composed of flaky intimations and whispers and Emmanuel Lubezki‘s wondrous cinematography with maybe 20 or 25 lines of dialogue, if that.

It’s basically The Tree of Life 2: Oklahoma Depression. It’s Malick sitting next to you and gently whispering in your ear, “You wanna leave? Go ahead. Go on, it’s okay, I don’t care…do what you want. But you can also stay.”

And that’s the thing about this film. Malick gives you so little to grapple with (at least in terms of a fleshed-out narrative and that thing we’ve all encountered from time to time called “speech” or “talking” or what-have-you) that it’s pretty much your responsibility to make something out of To The Wonder‘s 112 minutes. It’s all about you taking a journey of your own devising in the same way we all take short little trips with this or that object d’art in a gallery or a museum. The film is mesmerizing to look at but mostly it just lies there. Well, no, it doesn’t “lie there” but it just kind of swirls around and flakes out on its own dime. Run with it or don’t (and 97% of the people out there aren’t going to even watch this thing, much less take the journey) but “it’s up to you,” as the Moody Blues once sang.

To The Wonder doesn’t precisely fart in your face. It leads you rather to wonder what the air might be like if you’ve just cut one in a shopping mall and there’s someone right behind you, downwind. That’s obviously a gross and infantile thing to think about, but To The Wonder frees you to go into such realms if you want. It’s your deal, man. Be an adult or a child or a 12 year-old or a buffalo. Or a mosquito buzzing around a buffalo. Naah, that’s dull. Be a buffalo and sniff the air as Rachel McAdams walks by! You can go anywhere, be anything. Which is liberating in a sense, but if you can’t or won’t take the trip you’ll just get up and leave or take a nap or throw something at the screen. Or get up and leave and head for the nearest mall.

I went with it. I wasn’t bored. Well, at least not for the first hour. I knew what I’d be getting into and I basically roamed around in my head as I was led and lulled along by Lubezki’s images and as I contemplated the narcotized blankness coming out of Affleck’s “Neil” character, who is more or less based on Malick. Or would be based on Malick if Malick had the balls to make a film about himself, which he doesn’t. If Malick had faced himself and made a film about his own solitude and obstinacy and persistence…wow! That would have been something. But Malick is a hider, a coward, a wuss. He used to be the guy who was up to something mystical and probing and mysterious. Now he tosses lettuce leaves in the air and leaves you to put them all into a bowl as you chop the celery and the carrots and the tomatoes and decide upon the dressing.

I came out of it convinced that I will never, ever visit Bartlesville, Oklahoma, where the film was mostly shot.

There’s a kind of mad breakout scene in the second half in which Romina Mondello, “playing” an Italian-born friend of Olga Kurylenko, who “plays” Ben Affleck‘s French wife, says “there’s nothing here!” and you’re sitting there in your slumber and going “no shit?” But it’s not just the place — it’s the emptiness and the nothingness that Affleck and Kurylenko, who have become lovers in her native Paris (just as Malick fell in love with and married Michelle Morette in the mid ’80s), bring to their blah-fart activities in the film — wandering around, making love, playing kid-wrestling games, staring at sunsets, moving this or that piece of furniture from one room to another or lifting it out of a cardboard box, etc. These are people who are investing in their own torpor. People who bring nothing to the table. Deadheads.

Kurylenko and McAdams did a brief q & a after the film, and Kurylenko talked about how her character is supposed to be a little “crazy” — unbalanced, obsessive. Except there’s nothing in the film that persuades you of this, or even hints at it, really. Her character is passionate and emotional and has no real compulsion in life — nothing to do except twirl around, make goo-goo or fuck-you eyes at Affleck, take care of her 12 year-old daughter, sleep, make love, wonder about stuff, prepare meals, wander, daydream.

I raised my hand and asked Kurylenko and McAdams if Malick ever talked about how the film is largely based on his own life and how this was at least a key part of the fabric of it all, and they both kind of looked at each other and then at the floor and more or less said, “Ask Terry…that’s his affair.”

From the TIFF press notes: “As Malick liberates himself more and more from the restrictions of conventional narrative and pursues a more associative approach, he gets closer to eliciting pure, subconscious responses from his viewers. It is gratifying to note that the same man who long ago wrote an uncredited draft of Dirty Harry now finds freedom in the transcendental.”

  • Eloi Wrath

    “To The Wonder doesn’t precisely fart in your face.” — Jeffrey Wells, Hollywood Elsewhere.

    That’s your poster-quote right there.

  • brace

    I can’t stand Malick! “Ask Terry…that’s his affair” is such an arrogant thing to say. that man thinks he’s God. he makes these strange movies and never bothers to explain them hoping that ‘believers’ will eat them up. they call them masterpieces but I find his films irritating.

  • Watcher Of The Skies

    Yeah, Malick’s a “wuss.” Keep telling yourself that. There was a time when film lovers would be ECSTATIC to get 2 films from this legend in just a couple of years. TREE OF LIFE is a gorgeously insane picture. What is wrong with making unconventional movies in an industry dominated by CGI, sequels and comic book heroes? Isn’t this the kind of picture you should be embracing? I have yet to see a bad Terrence Malick pic. Hopefully, I’ll be seeing this one soon.

  • gazer

    Mr. Wells —

    Partially interesting, if somewhat bland and indifferent take on To the Wonder.

    Here a reaction to, I believe, your question to Kurylenko and McAdams from someone over at IMDb:

    There was a question from an audience member referring to the film being auto-biographical and Olga’s character being inspired by Malick’s first wife. And it was a very personal question, and considering Malick’s current wife introduced the film, was slightly inappropriate to ask in such a public forum. It could be a deeply personal issue inside their marriage, or as Rachel McAdams said, “He didn’t make it about him at all.” So… Everyone around me sort of gasped at the question and found it very awkward.

    Whether Mr. Malick really made the film based on his own personal experiences or not, what’s the point in constantly trying to “expose the recluse” instead of going by the film itself and telling us more about how you feel about it? I find the ad hominem approach of yours on Malick’s films somewhat tiresome by now, and, it would seem, perhaps even inappropriate. If the film is so much about whatever one would make of it, I’m tempted to read your take on To the Wonder as the outcome of a Rorshach test, leading me to believe that what you’re saying here is actually more about yourself.

  • kdoucette

    I was once a fan of Malick’s. I wrote a 15-page paper on Malick and his mystique just shortly after the release of The New World. The Tree of Life is fine after a few sits, but I have no desire to see this. Now that he’s making films on a consistent basis on there is less and less of a storyline, he bores me. If I wanted to see gusts of wind, blades of grass and stalks of wheat, I’d just go to Oklahoma….or a museum, where this film belongs (instead of a movie theatre).

  • Watcher Of The Skies

    @kdouchette: fitting name, you got there.

  • kdoucette

    Watcher of the Skies….I will forever love Malick’s work up until The New World and even bits and pieces of The Tree of Life (which is, btw, the only movie I can walk away from, let play, and come back and not really feel like I missed anything).

    But you are just as bad as those people who begged and pleaded to give Meryl Streep another Oscar. It’s fine to have your own opinion, as I have mine, but don’t go about calling anyone names….right, Lex?

  • Pete Apruzzese

    How DARE Malick make a *film* instead of the photographed stage plays that Jeff Wells usually prefers.

  • Mark

    I wonder if this is why Mallick suddenly got 3 movies rolling immediately after wrapping. You can only make star-studded, 8-figure poems written to yourself for so long before men in white coats kick you off the lot.

  • Carl Kolchak

    If you don’t want personal questions about your film to come up you shouldn’t make personal films.

    Also, I’m tired of this notion that any film that is unconventional is automatically good and worthy of our worship. That whole notion says more about the person who thinks it than than anything else.

  • Jeffrey Wells

    Wells to gazer: Regarding that IMDB commenter who wrote about my question last night about To The Wonder being based on Malick’s personal history? Who wrote that my reference “to the film being auto-biographical and Olga’s character being inspired by Malick’s first wife…was a very personal question, and, considering Malick’s current wife introduced the film, was slightly inappropriate to ask in such a public forum.”

    No offense but that person is quite naive, and obviously ignorant of the process that artists routinely use or go through in order to create whatever.

    Earth to IMDB commenter: Art is always about exposure of the deepest and darkest and most private things. Not much or most of the time — ALWAYS.

    The IMDB commenter wrote that “it could be a deeply personal issue inside their marriage.”

    No shit? That’s what art is all about, Clement Greenberg. True art is not about phony artifice or pretend games or little stories we make up to divert or amuse ourselves. It comes right from the heart and the gut and from the truth and delusion of our private imaginings and personal experiences.

    Rachel McAdams’ statement that Malick “didn’t make it about him at all” is at the very least selective bullshit. Read the true Malick story as it generally understood and judge for yourself:

  • Ghost of Kazan

    “True art is not about phony artifice or pretend games or little stories we make up to divert or amuse ourselves”

    This is what a one-person circular firing squad looks like.

  • Jeffrey Wells

    One thing is for sure: Terrence Malick can’t pull this shit again. He’s played this string out. No more movies based on Lubezki-the-beautiful wandering around fields and boulevards and front yards looking up at tree branches and buffaloes and butterflies and shit. That’s over, friend. No more. Come up with a new game or go home.

  • Ghost of Kazan

    Just think of it as a new form of genre, and Malick as the latest genre filmmaker.

  • Glenn Kenny

    “That’s over, friend. No more. Come up with a new game or go home.”

    Or else what? You’ll CHASTISE him some more? That’s been working out great for you so far.

  • Gaydos

    As I saw that Malick worked on DIRTY HARRY, these words drifted into my consciousness:


    I want to see a MIDNIGHT RUN style road trip movie about young John Milius and young Terrence Malick, traveling through Oklahoma doing research on a violent action film.

    Every time they spot a redtailed hawk soaring above them, Milius takes out a 357 and blasts it out of the sky, causing Malick to return to his motel room to write THE TREE OF LIFE.

    I love the smell of non-linear cinema in the morning.

  • Stewart Klein

    Finally, someone has the balls to say the emperor has. No clothes.
    Ps. I’ll walk behind MacAdams any day. I’ll bet her farts smell like jasmine.

  • immature

    When is the next Oscar Poker?

  • berg

    there’s an early 70s film that Malick wrote called Deadhead Miles that stars Alan Arkin as a tripped out truck driver … Milius has a role as a state trooper

  • kdoucette

    Malick should do a remake of Invasion of the Bodysnatchers set in Texas….make it a religious film by having the religious nutjobs think the invaded nutjobs are possessed by the devil. Set in a world that has never heard of aliens and has no idea how to get rid of them.

    Or he should do a movie about the dust bowl. Or remake The Road…not movies that might as well have been directed by Lubezki instead of Malick…

  • K. Bowen

    The funny thing is, I keep reading how all the critics hated it, and how there were all these boos, and yet the majority of the reviews I’ve seen are positive. What are the people who admire the film supposed to do, jump up and start cheering?

  • FlashDust

    Apparently the only films Jeff champions these days are about depressed neurotics a la Greenberg and Silver Linings Playbook.

  • Manitoba

    As a regular reader,I could instantly trace Jeff’s question back to Peter Biskind’s Vanity Fair piece on Malick.It seemed a perfectly good question to ask just to find out whether Malick gave any hints or said anything about real life parallels.
    I just replayed the Newsweek-Daily Beast Oscar roundtable hosted by David Ansen last January where Christopher Plummer reveals how he burned his bridges with Malick by writing him an angry note.Just type in Christopher Plummer on Terrence Malick, on Google search.
    Plummer does praise Malick’s extraordinary painterly abilities while complaining “you’re so boring,you get in these ruts.”

  • lazarus

    Brace said “I can’t stand Malick! “Ask Terry…that’s his affair” is such an arrogant thing to say. that man thinks he’s God. he makes these strange movies and never bothers to explain them hoping that ‘believers’ will eat them up. they call them masterpieces but I find his films irritating.”

    All recent accounts of Terry have revealed him to be a kind and humble man. Just because an artist isn’t interested in explaining exactly what their work is “about” doesn’t make him arrogant. In fact, I’d argue that sharing your expression with the audience and letting them interpret it as it relates to their own lives is one of the most generous things an artist can do.

    Plenty of films out there that spoon-feed; why must this one conform to those standards? Why? Is it your money funding the project? Is it preventing other films from being made?

  • brace

    you’re right, an artist doesn’t have to explain his work. viewers should figure them out themselves if they’re intrigued. but the reason I think he’s arrogant and acts like God is because he never appears in public. don’t get me wrong I don’t really care about watching him in talk shows and stuff like that but a month ago or something all sites i visit had like flesh news that Terrence Malick is pictured with Christian Bale. one blurry picture of that man is such an important news.please!
    btw this new film may be some kind of experiment he performed to see whether people really like his work or they just pretend so he made a bad film to see the reaction.

  • Krillian

    It’s okay. If I want to see a movie, I’ll go see a movie. If I want to see a Terrence Malick Art Project, I’ll go see To the Wonder. I get it.

  • cinefan

    Owen Glieberman of Entertainment Weekly had a similar reaction to the film:

  • J. Ho

    Judging by Wells’ reaction and the other reviews so far this is obviously another masterpiece by Malick. Wells didn’t get The Tree of Life either.

  • Jesse Crall

    What Krillian said.

  • FlashDust

    What J. Ho said.

  • jujuju

    jeffrey wells to terrence malick: “That’s over, friend. No more. Come up with a new game or go home.”

    that’s precious. really.

    what’s that i hear? sounds like malick packing a bag and going home

  • FlashDust

    It is funny to hear Jeff call for Spielberg to go all Bresson with War Horse and then when a director does channel Bresson in his films he calls it a fart.

    The Movie Godz are sadly disappointed.

  • Jeffrey Wells

    Wells to J. Ho: I got The Tree of Life and then some, you asshole. Although I did say, yes, that it kind of lost its mojo starting around the 40 minute mark.

    The review was called “Rapturous, Undisciplined Visual Poetry.” Read the first three or four graphs:

    “I was standing in the right-rear section of the orchestra when The Tree of Life ended and didn’t even hear the booing, which reportedly came from the upper balcony. In any event I think it’s beastly to boo a film as hauntingly beautiful and immensely ambitious and spiritually directed as this one, and which is so dazzling and transporting during its first half-hour to 40 minutes.

    “I understand the frustration, mind, because The Tree of Life does lose itself in its own impressionistic quicksand after the first half-hour. It begins to drown, sink, swallow itself. The center cannot hold.

    “But it’s entirely worth seeing (and praising) for the portions that clearly and unmistakably deliver. I’m especially referring to what people will soon be calling the 2001/Douglas Trumbull section. Who in the big-budget realm is even trying to make pure art films like this except Malick?

    “But over time he’s been given, I feel, a bit too much freedom and time to do whatever he damn well pleases. There’s a part of me that would dearly love to see Malick suffer under a brutal Harry Cohn-like producer because as unhappy as that would make him personally, he’d make tougher and more rigorous films.

    “And if not Cohn then Bert Schneider. If Schneider was back from the dead and producing for Malick he would kick Malick’s ass around the block for drill and then grab him by the lapels and give a good bitch-slapping, and then there would be no more funny business, you bet.

    “Malick’s staunchly non-linear, 136-minute poem about beauty and Godliness suppressed and the unfortunate legacy of brutal paternal parenting in the 1950s is a sad and beautiful…wank? The ultimate refutation of narrative? An often captivating but rudderless impressionistic exercise?”

  • J. Ho

    You say it lost some of it’s mojo around the 40 minute mark. I’m sorry but that was just when the real magic was starting. No film has ever captured childhood quite like The Tree of Life. Truly one of the greatest films ever made. Same with The Thin Red Line.

  • J. Ho

    People are complaining about Malick’s directing now and in thirty years we’ll be heralding him as one of the great masters of cinema. As if we already shouldn’t be doing that.

  • Floyd Thursby

    But does it have shots of greenery waving in the breeze? If not, it’s not a real Terry.

  • kdoucette

    The Thin Red Line, yes….The Tree of Life, not so much…

  • Ghost of Kazan

    The opposite of what brace said.

  • immature

    @brace What business is it of anyone’s if he appears in public? Why does his reclusion make him arrogant if one doesn’t care about him appearing on talk shows or elsewhere to explain his work? And it isn’t like Malick is responsible for the blurry picture with him and Bale or for some people acting like that is big news. What does that have to do with the quality (or lack thereof) of his films?

  • Mark

    “No film has ever captured childhood quite like The Tree of Life. Truly one of the greatest films ever made.”

    Capturing something is the job of a photographer. A film should do a little more, given that at this length, it’s a quarter million photographs shown at 24fps. Most use the opportunity to tell a specific story or conflict; a little more than capturing a mood, time, and place, which can usually be accomplished in a teaser trailer.

  • Travis Actiontree

    I’m guessing I’m with Wells on this. It seems the Emperor has been shopping at Macy’s, looking for a new outfit.

    I don’t think he’s saying that Malick needs to go out and direct the next Twilight film, but really, how “Malicky” can he go before some of you throw in the towel?

    He’s turning into Factory-era Warhol.

    So if his next film is single, three hour shot of leaves dancing off the branch of an oak tree followed by five minutes of volcano footage then THE END are y’all gonna chastise those not lauding its brilliance as NASCAR mouth-breathers?

    (and Eloi’s first comment for the win)

  • lazarus

    Brace apparently feels that everyone in the industry be thankful for all the PR opportunities, as if that has anything to do with the art.

  • J. Ho

    Mark doesn’t get it.

  • patches23

    Somewhere a producer and his lacky are re-enacting the Larry Hagman/Robert Vaughn scenes from SOB.

    “Let me have a crack at that thing. We’ll see if there’s a story there. One thing’s for sure, I’m a damn good cutter.”

    “Damn good.”

  • mizerock

    “That’s over, friend. No more. Come up with a new game or go home.”

    Meaning, he doesn’t get any more funding, if he’s unable to attract a big enough audience to pay for these flights of fancy. That’s only fair. Did “Tree of Life” bring any return on its $32M budget? Wow, based on its international box office, it just might have. Will this one? I can’t imagine it will, but I would have said the same thing for “Tree of Life”, so I guess I just don’t know. I guess I just wouldn’t invest any of my money on non-narritive cinema, in general [even if I might buy a ticket to watch it].

  • York “Budd” Durden

    Somewhere a producer and his lacky are re-enacting the Larry Hagman/Robert Vaughn scenes from SOB.

    Is there anything funnier than this exchange between Robert Preston and Bill Holden? “Well, we’re out of vodka…” “Again? I just opened a new fifth!”

  • Gaydos

    Whether or not you like Malick’s films, he’s now established as such a brand, helped immeasurably by negative cost vs film ultimate returns ratio, that he will be able to make feature films for the rest of his time on earth.

    Perhaps, given his cosmography, off earth as well.

    Ditto Wes Anderson.

    And a few others we could mention. So, sorry h8rs, they’re here to stay.

  • Terry McCarty

    Going to make a bold prediction that Malick’s Austin TX music scene film will be less ethereal and contains at least 30 minutes of dialogue.

  • FlashDust

    Oh no, the great Jeff Wells of his hatred for middle America, laughing women at cafes, hispanics who happen to party has told Terrence Malick of BADLANDS, DAYS OF HEAVEN, THE THIN RED LINE to stop this shit and “come up with a new game or go home.”

    Quivering in his boots he is.

  • FlashDust

    Can you remind us what your contribution to society has been Jeff besides maniacal anecdotes about “emotionally vivid cowboy hats”, “neon shoes”, and “gold toed socks?”

  • Gaydos

    Time for crix to double down on their Malick bets or leave the table.

    Time for crix to triple down on their Andy/Lana/Tom bets or find another casino!

    This game is on fire.

  • Rashad

    Jeff is right. Malick needs to do something different, or just go away. He’s becoming a parody of himself.

  • lazarus

    Can you imagine dealing with this gallery of buffoons back in the Hichcock heyday

    “There he goes again, another suspense thriller about a wrongly-accused man, with a meaningless MacGuffin artificially convoluting the plot!”

    And congrats to Travis for a BRILLIANT twist on the “emperor has no clothes” cliche, as well as his own unique take on the “Malick shooting greenery” criticism that we haven’t heard enough times already.


  • K. Bowen

    My favorite is when Malick detractors accuse the films of being empty simply because they cannot follow them.

  • alynch

    I have loved every single movie Malick has made to date. I believe all of them are masterpieces. Yet based on how this film has been described (even by the critics who loved it), I think there’s a decent chance I won’t be watching it, at least not in theaters.

    I’ve admired the man’s filmmaking style for years because I believe it beautifully enhances the stories being told in his films in a way that a more conventional telling would sorely lack. This on other hand sounds like there’s no story to speak of. I’m really not into mood pieces. I suppose some will say that makes me a philistine, but there it is.

  • Ira Parks

    Whispered VO: Brother. Mother. Wells. It was they who braved Toronto traffic and spotty wifi for thee.

    (Wells holds a strand of wheat in his hands, looking down at it contemplatively. Burnt orange sunset in the background.)

  • Ira Parks


    Like if I’m stuck between to frowsy yenta hens during this at the arclight, and they’re talking about Julia Child during a no-dialogue stretch while Affleck is eating cereal for two hours, how will I maintain a BP of less than 666777777777777777777/685444888888888888?

    Just put in your vhs copy of HEARTBEEPS. GOOD ENOUGH.

  • JoshSleeps

    I live in Tulsa, about 45 minutes south of Bartlesville and Pawhuska (where the film was also shot).

    The area has its problems – meth, small-mindedness, etc. But it’s also beautiful, poetic – spiritual. You wanna know what inspired Malick’s art, his obsession with magic hour, his fascination with the nexus of God, humanity and nature? Go stand in the tall grass prairie outside of Pawhuska at dusk. I dare you not to feel something.

    I haven’t seen the film so I don’t know how Bartlesville is portrayed, but I hope that Jeffrey isn’t just a typical L.A. dick who needs pavement, artifice and a Peet’s/Starbucks/Jamba Juice on every corner in order to feel at home.

  • JoshSleeps

    I should also say – for the downside of Pawhuska (i.e. the people), see Tracy Letts’ genius August: Osage County. I’ve known that family, many times over.

  • Alobar

    It’s only 112 minutes? Fuck it, I’m in…

  • pchu

    Got a chance to watch this today. It is a minor work by Malick. All the Malick trademarks are there (whispering, characters having a forlorn look, breathtaking images), but when I left the theater I feel indifferent towards the film. In contrast, when I walked out of The Tree of LIfe, I was elated.

    Basically Malick has a basic idea of the movie, shot a bunch of footage and try to piece it together in the editing room. This time he couldn’t find a great movie there. Still recommend to Malick fans, and Olga Kurylenko is a revelation.

    Question for people who watched this: What’s the point of the Javier Bardem character?

  • Michael Mayo

    Jeff sometimes drives me nuts, but every now and then he outdoes himself and the profession. I don’t think I’m ever going to be able to think of Terry Malick again without thinking of him as some sort of bored Salad Master tossing old lettuce…

    More seriously, maybe Malick is trying to be Chris Marker without understanding how Marker made his films work…Just a thought…

  • Adam P.

    I read your blog everyday, so it’s pretty cool that i was at the same screening as you, though i was in the upper balcony. While i was initially taken aback by Jeff’s question because of Malick’s wife’s presence, I think it was fair, and i was disappointed in Olga’s response to the effect of she wouldnt speak for Terry on a personal question. Jeff had a loud voice so i could hear the question which was a good thing, but he was a bit long winded and specific about Malick’s prior history which I think made everyone uncomfortable and not really explore the question.

    Also, i was surrounded by people who were there just because the film starred Affleck and McAdams. You can imagine the bewilderment as we all exited…

  • Adam P.

    By the way, i liked Tree of Life but didnt love it. I was never bored. However, To The Wonder dragged on and on. I had to see it because of seeing that pic on Jeff’s oscar balloon all year. If the film had only been the scenes of France, magic hour in the fields and Rachel McAdams, i would have loved it as something in the same essence as Baraka. I would not recommend this film as is.

  • a1

    Pchu, I’ve also seen the film and I agree – Malick fans should see it and they’ll get some interesting things out of the movie (and if you’re not a Malick fan, run away from this movie as fast as possible)

    (possible “spoilers” below – if’s that’s even possible for a movie this abstract…)

    Why’s Bardem in the movie? I actually think he’s kind of Malick’s self-criticism of the main characters, and maybe even his own work. Bardem is constantly shown visiting people whose concerns and problems are vastly different than those of Affleck or Kurylenko (in fact, whose problems may be partly *caused* by Affleck’s actions). And look at how those visits are presented: decrepit, cluttered, noisy. Compare that to Affleck’s surroundings: naturally beautiful, artificially pristine, and very very empty of other people. Maybe Bardem’s malaise is partly due to his calling to service and listen to other people, while Affleck and Kurylenko can keep frolicking in a field during Magic Hour, oblivious to any community around them.

  • Ira Parks

    (Wells and Glenn Kenny stand on opposite ends of a large field at daybreak. Wells is sitting on a rock, watching a hummingbird. Kenny moves some sticks around dolefully with his foot.)

    Wells VO: Nature is its own master. (The hummingbird flies away.)

    Kenny VO: Brother, how do I get back to thee?

    (A turtle walks past Kenny………..then across the field……..the whole fucking field, like at least 300 yards in length…….more turtle walking………holy shit……..the turtle (finally) walks past Wells.)

    Wells: What is bully boy Terry planning to make of this? I’ve been on a rock for two hours.

    Kenny: I feel like I’m just kind of standing here.

    Malick (several feet away): CUT! I knew Wells was trouble, but Soderbergh said Kenny was ok….Now I want it to be Bud Cort and Sally Kellerman.

    (A producer standing behind him closes his eyes tightly.)


    Exercise Freak” hllttyiyithhh0912 series is appropriately increase some low frequency, cheap dre beats let activists maintain excited state, CEA2011 years,cheap dre beats according to a study to listen to music when motion can be performance improvement of at least beats by dre For business cheap beats by dre personage place design “Globe Cruiser” beats by dre cheap series cheap dr dre beats has excellent tracking quality andbeats by dre cheap abnormal excellent noise cheap beats by dre reduction effect, cheap dr dre beats and optional wired and wireless two usage mode of business or travel for people can more efficiently in cheap beats by dre noisy environment, quietly dr dre headphones listening to music is a Cheap dr dre beats kind of enjoyment. Cheap dr dre beats The last is “Urban Raver” series, his voice in favour of explosive, strong bass effect, especially suitable for nowadays dr dre headphones love social cheap beats young users, for performance rock and pop music is very handy. New four big series headset squad including “Music Maniac” series of D7100 – AH, AH – D600 and AH – C400, “Urban Raver” series of AH dr dre headphones – D400 and AH – C300, “Globe Cruiser” series of AH – NCW500 and AH – W200, and “Exercise Freak” series of AH – W150. Among them AH – NCW500 have silver, black optional, but AH – W150 shell color is cheap beats to be more rich some, yellow, blue, and black three colors.

  • Gaydos

    Comment #67 is NOT spam. It’s the synopsis for an unproduced screenplay by Terrence Malick.

  • P.L.

    You said this movie is about Malick’s relationships, particularly with the french woman he married in the 80’s. But it’s been known for a while now that this woman, Michele Morette, died in 2008 from cancer. It could explain why Malick made that movie this fast after Tree of Life. Her death may be the reason why he wanted to make that movie… Even if there is no clear mention of her, except maybe in the title that is a reference to Mont Saint Michel.
    It is only speculation but it makes sense…