Tag Archives: Terrence Malick

Days of Moving Heaven and Earth

When we finally found the location for Days of Heaven, I learned that because the Hutterite farmers were going to harvest the wheat in 6 weeks I would only have four weeks to design, build and dress the house and buildings around it. We were too young to know it couldn’t be done! We did it with some great carpenters, design shortcuts and a lot of luck. I hired a lot of young Hutterite boys to work every Sunday after church to help in construction.

Production Designer Jack Fiskphotos by Janit Baldwin


Cinematographer Nestor Alméndros, Camera Operator John Bailey and a prop scarecrow


Wheat A Minute

To The Wonder
Days of Unleavened
Official Website | Trailers & Mo
R | 112 min

to the wonder2

A couple, deep in love, ascend the castle mount of France’s majestic Mont Saint-Michel.  They hold hands, caress, kiss, stare at each other’s beauty, the man-made beauty of the castle, and the heavenly nature-made beauty of their tidal surroundings.  The music swells, the cameras swooshes by, she runs wild on the sand, glowing under the wide open sky, and the eyes of god?  Repeat, repeat, repeat.  Wow, we’re at the very beginning of ‘s next poetic masterpiece… right???  Well…

Well, the couple ( & Bond Girl ) decide to leave Europe for the friendly suburban plain planes of America, where he does environmental land things.  Guess what, the caressing, kissing, staring, music swelling, and camera swooshes crossed the ocean with them (although the running wild on sand has been replaced by running wild thru wheat fields).  Repeat, repeat, repeat.  But then after they settle in, maybe he’s no longer that into her as she is into him.  The caressing and kissing are replaced by arms being thrown up in the air in disgust, and the staring is no longer the kind kind, and yet the music still swells, and the camera continues to swoosh.  Her visa is up, and he doesn’t marry her, so she has to go home (with her daughter.  we coulda mentioned her earlier, but the daughter doesn’t matter).  He then meets  (apparently again, although it’s not clear that they’ve met before) and so he’s found a new lady to caress and kiss and stare at, all while the music swells and the camera swooshes.  New she doesn’t like to run thru wheat fields as much as the old she did, but she certainly still loves wheat fields. Repeat, repeat, repeat.  But then the original she comes back into the picture/America so new she goes bye bye, and then he and old she are doing a combo of caressing, kissing, staring and throwing their arms up in the air in disgust, while the music swells and the camera swooshes by.  That’s basically the movie – one long montage of what we juss described, on endless repeat repeat repeat repeat.  Oh wait, forget to mention that  was in this too.  He plays a priest who has like lost his way, kinda like the old she has, and they’re both trying to find their way back, to god, and themselves, and stuff.  Or something

What actually is going on, or transpired, or whatever ever To The Wonder is is anyone’s guess (some say it has to do with the disintegration of Malick’s own marriage to a European lady).  There’s barely any dialog, mostly lyrical narration, and this spiritual meditation babble gets plopped on top of the swelling music and camera swooshes, and guides the viewer further away from understanding.  Look, this kinda stuff was fine when it was in Tree of Life, cause things happened in Tree of Life, like Bradd Pittt saying ‘hit me‘, and death, and dinosaurs, and the creation of earth, AND STUFF, but when you try to use the same GORGEOUS cinematography against a movie of nothing but caressing and kissing and then not caressing and not kissing and lots of running thru wheat fields it doesn’t really do anything for anybody.  It juss becomes one of those Koyaanisqatsi Powaqqatsi Naqoyqatsi movie things, which aren’t really movies, but juss long montages set to the music of Philip Glass.  That’s what this feels like – pretty images with pretty music with pretty much no point.  Look, there won’t be another film in 2013 as beautiful as Malick’s To The Wonder, but beauty doesn’t make a movie.  If I wanted to look at empty beauty, I’d head to my nearest breastaurant

Oh Malick, why did you make such a Terrence Malicky Terrence Malick homage of a Terrence Malick film???  You tried to make like a modern day Days of Heaven in Hell, and ya juss ended up out-Terrence Malicking yerself.  But hey, I’m not really complaining, cause I love that he’s doubled his own output in 8 short years, and has like 99 movies in the pipeline, but are they all going to be these visual poems with no chapters, footnotes, forwards or epilogues??  Maybe time will be kind to To The Wonder, but I have to wonder, wonder what the fcuk that was all about, but for now, God only knows

Verdictgo: kinda pains me to say, but 9reals, this is totes Sum Merit But No Stinkin Badges

Wonders why today in limited release & on-demand

to the wonder

and until next thyme the balcony is clothed…



She’s The Manz

ever hear some curious audio clip in a song and wonder where the forksticks that came from, and then one day, BLAM-O, you finally finger out where it came from???

um, yeah, that very dang thing happened when we watched the opening credits to Dennis Hopper’s incredible Out of The Blue (currently playing this week at NY’s Anthology Film Archives) and hearing lil Linda Manz CBing that ‘disco sucks’ and to…

KILL ALL HIPPIES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


yeah, that was totally awesome times like 3!!!

Linda Manz who?

you know, that totally rad spunky kid (she’s like a more ruffer Tatum O’Neal) who VOed ths sh#t out of Malick’s Days of Heaven??

she was also in Gummo and sadly not all that much else, but still, she’s the Manz!!!



My Three Mother Nature’s Sons

The Tree of Life
Endless Days of Heaven
Official WebsiteTrailers & Mo
PG-13 | 138  min

What is The Tree of Life?  Is it life?  Is it tree?  Is it of?  Is it Terrence Malick‘s masterpiece above all of his other masterpieces or close to it? Is it 2+ hours of trying to be good/tuff dad Brad Pitt saying ‘hit me‘?  Is it 32 minutes of Sean Penn looking glum and tired, as his walks around cool modern buildings in Texas AND dusty western vistas?  Is it trying to compare wonderful and volatile mother nature vs wonderful and fancy-free mother nurture (Jessica Chastain), who obeys her husband, adores her children and our maker, runs on beds and sometimes floats on air?  Is it playful and mischievous, like their three sons (Hunter McCrackenLaramie Eppler and Tye Sheridan)?  Is it the bestest planetarium footage not seen in a planetarium?  Is it really that sunshiney every 8 seconds? Is it Sunday thru Saturday Evening Post beyond picture perfect looking? Is it really only released in a 2-D version?  Is it the most thoughtful dinosaur movie that isn’t a dinosaur movie?  Is it truly meaningful or is it juss a bunch of phooey baloney or is it both?  Is it poetry in motion?  Is it motion in poetry?  Is it one long montage meditation trying to pass itself off as a movie? Is it even a movie?  Is it over our heads?  Is it the 2001 II we’ve all been waiting for?  Is it American, while feeling and being foreign cause American flicks are barely this ambitious and beautiful anymore?  Is it possible that some other movie could one-up this and win Best Picture?  Is it possible you will hate this cause of its loose narrative?  Is it possible yer an idiot if you boo this?

Is it all of these things?  Is it not?  IS IT???

House As A Life: let the pilgrimages begin!!

Verdictgo: Breast In Show

Tree is miracle growing in limited release

and until next thyme the balcony is clothed…

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