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8444Re: [terrencemalick] Re: To The Wonder

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  • tmalick75
    Apr 17 10:54 PM
      Here was a great review that made me watch it a second time
      immediately. I bought it 'on demand' on Dish Network...and for some odd
      reason, it's STILL on my DVR 5 days later. Not that I'm complaining.

      http://ebiri.blogspot.com/2013/01/to-wonder-i-write-on-water-things-i.html

      The guy that did this review has a first name of Bilge...isn't a Bilge
      a member of this group?

      Jason


      -----Original Message-----
      From: PNeski <PNeski@...>
      To: terrencemalick <terrencemalick@yahoogroups.com>
      Sent: Wed, Apr 17, 2013 12:57 pm
      Subject: Re: [terrencemalick] Re: To The Wonder





      I didn't think the Paris part was that great,since so much of this film
      is visuals ,I didn't think those moving camera shots added up to
      much,and didn't care for choice of music either,the shots of the mud
      were fantastic ,but other than
      a shot out the window of a train,I didn't care for much it ,I did care
      for the look of the film when they got to the US,those scenes were
      impressive The voice over did nothing for me ,and theres still way to
      much Handheld and Steadycam stuff

      this is the total opposite of a Bergman film with more set ups than any
      movie I can remember ,the transfer and Photography were super ,wish we
      had more than one character given to us ,and that wasn't a very
      likeable one,I take it was one
      of his wife's friends in real life

      -----Original Message-----
      From: Julien Picot <theboywiththecamerainhisside@...>
      To: terrencemalick <terrencemalick@yahoogroups.com>
      Sent: Wed, Apr 17, 2013 1:33 pm
      Subject: [terrencemalick] Re: To The Wonder

      My dear friends,

      A few thoughts after watching “To The Wonder”.

      It is a film with many problems and few virtues.

      The beginning and all the Paris section are wonderful. Mont
      Saint-Michel and the Paris streets are filmed in such a beautiful and
      evocative manner. It is an excellent starting point.
      The CUT that takes us from Paris to Oklahoma is stunning. Just “that”
      cut, that frame, the way he jumps from Paris to Oklahoma. Pure
      filmmaking at it's best. Moments like these, simple and pure, show us
      Malick as a gifted director, a one that plays on a major league: no
      airports, no suitcases, no planes, and no arrivals... Just a cut and
      move on.

      The Sound Design:

      It is stunning and the best part of the movie so far. It is a
      magnificent aural experience. It makes you want to "listen" the movie
      instead of watching it. It is a much better movie (sic) when listening
      it. Multiple layers of sounds, music, whispers, echoes, and voices, all
      mixed in such a great and delicate balance. Brilliant.

      Some (BIG) problems:

      I think Malick has become a self-parody and his cinema already a
      franchise for this kind of aesthetics. There is so much indulgence, so
      much self-consciousness. Finally, this is the Malick for the mass
      culture. There is now a label for this type of products: “Malickian”.
      And he is the first instigator or the best salesman of it.
      No transcendentalism cinema can be achieved with such approach. It
      becomes tacky and phony. I don’t buy this false romanticism and
      spiritualism. There are moments, certainly, but the overall result is
      full of mannerisms. Shame.

      I wish Malick would be brave and explore new paths. First, he should
      try to get rid of the voice-over and embrace a full radicalism
      attitude/approach towards his material. Believe me, this movie would be
      much much better without the reiterative and so fingered voice-over. Of
      course it has beautiful and poetic moments but most of it is just
      unnecessary. Imagine this movie without the voice-over, with the
      minimum dialogue and there you have a perfect film. New challenges
      could be presented to the audience through this approach. This is just
      an idea but I feel that Malick has exhausted its potential.

      Actors:
      Malick, IMHO, has a problem with stars that can't improvise or
      understand what they are asking to do. By now, Malick doesn't need
      stars or big names in order to gain box-office appeal. Maybe he needs
      them to funding. If so, he could try harder and start a more intense
      research of actors that understand him and his material. See Mike Leigh
      for what I mean. The acting in Leigh films, mostly improvised, is
      amazing. Malick needs REAL and SENSITIVE actors that can deliver the
      goods. Don't be the Woody Allen of auteur american cinema!

      Affleck and Bardem are ridiculous and lost. You are not watching
      characters, your are watching actors performing or trying to perform.
      Bardem's voice-over is pathetic. His Spanish tone is so false and lacks
      all credibility. It is clear Malick does not know Spanish or didn't
      have someone around to tell him about it. But who would say something
      to Bardem, right? Olga Kurylenko is the best of all. She is gracious
      and fragile as expected. Of course she spends most of the time dancing
      and running on the field with her open arms in a commercial/music video
      fashion (c'mon Terry, you can do better!) and this become reiterative
      and naive. But she is good when delivering the struggle and drama.
      Romina Mondello delivers the worst part: a monologue (in Italian) about
      freedom that I was embarrassed for her. We are already seeing that they
      live in a suburb in the middle-of-nowhere where live is boring and has
      little meaning. I don't understand this decision since we
      already got it. I believe this is an error: the unnecessary need of
      telling what you are seeing. Rachel McAdams is expendable. Period.

      But there is something special regarding the acting and actors. And is
      not about the stars but the real people Malick finds on location. At
      least they look so authentic and genuine that they steal the show from
      the lead actors. Malick should deal with this topic deeper. It is
      fascinating and he captures these people and their circumstances so
      well you want to know more about their stories. He should embrace or
      explore a formal radicalism or some kind of American Neo-Realism style.
      A director like Malick is closer to the methods of Pasolini, Rossellini
      or Frederick Wiseman. There is a great moment to catch a glimpse of
      what I mean: Bardem, a priest that struggles with a crisis of faith,
      talks to a black old man inside the church. This man is absolutely
      amazing and his lines seems so improvise and personal. On the other
      hand, Bardem looks so vulnerable as an actor. The contrast is so
      relevant. To mix professional actors and real people can be a great idea
      if achieved well. For that, Malick needs actors that understand this
      kind of procedure. The movie is a failure but shows enormous
      possibilities for keep digging and finding new ideas to enrich his
      filmography.

      One more thing about actors: Jessica Chastain, Rachel Weisz, Amanda
      Peet, Michael Sheen and Barry Pepper were cut from the final film, so
      go figure the other possible movies that could be! I think there is a
      movie about the editing room of Malick! A movie about the possible
      movies, and never will be, of Terrence Malick.

      Malick has become a full time handheld/stedycam type of director, and
      sometimes the footage is gorgeous and others too much to express
      nothing.

      At the end of the movie, when the camera stops for a few shots, you
      breathe and feel so good. Those shots are beautiful and charged with so
      much meaning. Malick should keep the camera quiet more often.

      And a funny thing in the closing credits, there is one that says:
      "Ambassador of goodwill: Alexandra Malick”. No idea what it means...

      I feel
      there is something going wrong with the latest Malick. Maybe is this
      self-
      indulgence, maybe is that he is surrounded by a group of yes-men or
      simply he
      has not good friends anymore ;) to point him this kind of flaws. There
      is just
      something that doesn’t fit at all.
      “To The
      Wonder”, even imperfect, could be worth to me if filmed from the guts
      and lots
      of instinct. Instead, its feel so calculate that there is no more sense
      of
      exciting risk anymore. This is the Malick imitation made by Malick
      himself. The
      Malick for everybody, not the real and genuine one some of us used to
      love.
      The fields have become a postcard, the
      golden sunsets a cliché already. Everything looks worn-out and the Soul
      is gone.

      Best regards.

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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