Malick reaches for the reflective poetry of Tarkovsky, the gnomic philosophy of association of late-Godard & the dream-play of Angelopoulos, but is hampered by the attention span of Michael Bay. Imagery is constant & unrelenting; too brief & vague to make an impression or to crystallise into something more profound. The portrait of decadence & the ennui of excess is derivative of earlier masters, Fellini & Antonioni.
Improvisation is great for comedy. Not so much for drama. While Bale is content to do little, it makes his partners overcompensate and you get bad acting. Creating a structure of Tarot Cards/Pilgrim's Progress around it does not improve the content. His life is everything you want, but absolutely devoid of any meaning. Unfortunately, Malick's gone from elegiac to frenetic, and so it all adds up to less than zero.
beautiful visual journey. love how Malick juxtaposes textures and landscapes here. some might call it formulaic but I think what he is doing is far too unique to call predictable. it's a blessing to have someone making films like this. his vision resonates with me, deeply. you either you get or don't I guess. it either speaks to you or it doesn't.
A fascinating premise that lacks story-telling. The fact that the director depends strictly on the sensitivity and cultivation of the viewer reduces obstreperously the accomplishment of its intention: the awakening of souls--only the ones that are already awake, will be able to connect and understand the exercise. Therefore and sadly for the rest of the audience, this visual poem is but a beautiful jerk off.
Malick's La Dolce Vita, and if he's still going off the deep end, he's also finding new things there: wild images, a cycle of fatherhood, experiments in digital, and a way of seeing the modern world that's more organic than in his last film. It deserves to be taken seriously; the arc is nice, and Christian Bale is better at silent navel-gazing than Ben Affleck. Here's hoping Malick finds what he's looking for.
Rather than figuratively and literally shooting for the stars, Malick plays it drearily safe with "Knight of Cups," caught in dangerous territory of cheapening his very aesthetic by way of lackluster "themes" ("we are like clouds, coming and going") on top of redundant, sweeping long-turned-medium shots. This is somebody's movie, but mostly, it is another disappointing installment since Malick became more prolific.
As a big fan of Malick's earlier work, this was even more disappointing than his previous two films. Interesting ideas aside, overall this was mundane, unimportant, and so self-indulgent it's hardly watchable.
Knight of Cups is of our moment in a way that just dwarfs everything, including perhaps the moment. And: pause. There was a lengthy as hell gestation. But it hits. Man. The tone never falters. The tossing of all material into the montage feels like it has been scrupulous this go-round. This is so clearly Malick's finest film that I am at a loss as to how to address the detractors. Watch Spotlight again. I abhor you.