Les moissons du Ciel ou quand Hopper rencontre Saint Saëns. C'est le plus beau malentendu de l'Histoire du cinéma. Des plans époustouflants d'une poésie éternelle. Une ode à la nature insaisissable d'une Amérique oubliée, nature qui nous rappelle souvent cruellement qu'elle continue de tourner sans se soucier de nous. Les meurtres et les jalousies peuvent nous accabler, rien n'arrêtera la saison des moissons.
One of the most beautiful films ever made, and a massive influence on this century's US cinema, Days of Heaven was a defining moment in 70s film, even if it wasn't seen that way at the time. On the base of a simple, even soapy, plot, Malick constructed a vibrant, constantly changing landscape of swaying wheat, clucking pheasants and locust swarms, set (and filmed) in the sunset of one age and the sunrise of another.
A poetic parable of love amidst the natural purity of earth and man's tendency to scorch it. A native of Texas, Malick portrays flora and fauna in breathtaking movement, flaxen impressions, and Biblical proportion. The close-ups of Richard Gere are incandescently honest. Sam Shepard is a wispy lil firecracker. Linda Manz is a perfect narrator, coloring the subversive meditations of Malick's soul. Ethereal yet curt.
Sweeping and pictorial to the highest degree, there's a heavenly, childlike breeze flowing through each second and frame of the film. Malick's poetry loses a bit of its luxurious bloom whenever the spoken word takes the center stage, but few directors match his sheer skill with cinematic movement and audiovisual eloquence.
It's like 'La Cienaga' meets 'The Servant'. It's an ancient story of romantic deception and betrayal couched in turn-of-the-century Americana, postmodern editing (the clashes of unrelated sounds and images), and the uniquely American wanderlust. For how familiar the story is, it's rather striking in that it plays out like a series of moments. It's rather like the photo montage that opens the movie, overall.
Malick's much celebrated film oscillates between character development and a depiction of an imposing social and natural milieu beyond the control of individual agency. Both motifs are elegantly treated by Almendros but again the indecisive mix of an agrarian epic and art film remains unecessarily fragmentary and far too absorbed in landscape photography. Thus, characters remain fuzzy, in spite of undeniable bravura.
An absolutely incredible film! In terms of a story there is only a rather thin outline to guide things along, but this outline is filled by something utterly transcendent. Of course, there are interesting (and grand) themes here too - love, death, modernity vs. nature and so on. More than anything it is pure poetry; filled with some of the most beautiful shots I have seen on film.