Tree of Life

Have you seen the movie Tree of Life yet?

You must.

But don’t go, expecting a normal, run-of-the-mill movie.  If pressed to describe it, I would say it’s a mix between a movie and a Nature Channel montage (amazing pictures, to say the least!), with an out-of-this-world soundtrack.  It’s a story about a family, but so much more than that.  It’s a story of that family within the context of the cosmos.  Yep, you heard me right.  The cosmos.

If you want someone else’s opinion, there are so many out there.  Start with Manohla Dargis’s review “Malick’s Film Adds a Dose of Sincerity to the Festivities” in The New York Times, which was written shortly after the movie got booed off the stage at the Cannes Film Festival.  Then in a strange turn of events, the movie won the film festival’s top prize.

I can’t say what Terrence Malick’s purpose in making the movie was, but I can guess.  I think the movie is a retelling of the age-old story of Job—a fleshing out of the utter helplessness and despair of Job, the silence of God, the yearning for life’s meaning (and explanations).  That the answers are still hidden, even if we believe in God.

I’d be interested in what you thought.

Below, you’ll find one of my favorite pieces from the movie.  [Sadly, the Tree of Live movie soundtrack includes none of the songs that actually make the movie!]

On Saturday, I’ll post a Grooveshark playlist of all the pieces from the movie I’ve been able to find.  They’re the kind of soaring pieces you need to fill the spaces of your house (and heart) with.



[Post image: Lone tree by annsam on stock.xchng]


  1. John
    Aug 25, 2011

    My personal guess about what Malick wanted with his Tree of Life:

    • Elissa
      Aug 26, 2011

      Wow, John, you’ve done a lot of thinking about the movie. I don’t “see” most of the stuff you’re saying, but that doesn’t mean you aren’t right. It would be interesting to see what others think, too…

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The quote I live by

Have patience with everything that remains unsolved in your heart. Try to love the questions themselves, like locked rooms and like books written in a foreign language. Do not now look for the answers. They cannot now be given to you because you could not live them. It is a question of experiencing everything. At present you need to live the question. Perhaps you will gradually, without even noticing it, find yourself experiencing the answer, some distant day.
--Rainer Maria Rilke in Letters to a Young Poet

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