>starts with reading from the Pilgrims Progress
>narrator talks about the story he uses to tell about a prince of the east
>Verdi's March of the Hebrew Slaves stars playing
LITERALLY the greatest cinematic moment of the year. Fuck me, how does Malick do it? Nobody else uses music as well. Also all those references to classical literature... just wow.
Very similar to To the Wonder which I also love. While TTW's focus is love, relationships, this film focuses on losing oneself in the pomp and circumstance of Hollywood. Also deeply spiritual, a modern polemic or sermon.
Whenever you’re feeling miserable, it’s always worth bearing in mind that some people are less fortunate than you are. Take, for example, Rick (Christian Bale), the angst-ridden screenwriter at the centre of Terrence Malick’s latest cinematic reverie, Knight of Cups. “I spent 30 years of my life not living it, but ruining it for myself,” he broods. “Where did I go wrong? I can’t remember the man I wanted to be.”
And it’s no wonder he’s so gloomy. The poor soul is handsome and healthy, and he is being paid a fortune to write screenplays for Hollywood’s top comedian. If that weren’t nightmarish enough, his writing commitments don’t entail any actual work, so he has to pass the time by strolling along the beach in his Armani outfit, usually in the company of his latest eye-meltingly gorgeous girlfriend. And it gets worse. Sometimes he’s forced to attend star-studded house parties, or to stand in the desert and gaze at the sunrise. He is even chased around boutique hotel rooms by models in skimpy lingerie. Where did he go wrong indeed?
All right, so Rick’s trials and tribulations may not sound especially punishing, but Malick wants us to take his chiselled hero’s existential crisis very seriously. Like his last two films, The Tree of Life and To the Wonder, Knight of Cups is an experimental, impressionistic collage which replaces most of its dialogue with fragmentary narration, and which abandons linear plotting in favour of woozy, elliptical montages punctuated by cryptic chapter headings. It presents itself as being more spiritual and profound than a conventional movie – and for the first few disorientating minutes, the viewer can go along with its own assessment. Soon, though, it’s plain that when Malick’s idiosyncratic methods are applied to an over-privileged California playboy, they don’t result in inspirational art.
>Knight of Cups continues his trend of shedding extraneous plot and narrative to focus on emotions
Are you fucking retarded? There is so much packed into this film. Literally every scene deserves to be paused and analysed for 20 minutes. The music ques, the visual symbolism in each action of the characters, the layout of the story are all there to convey a message.
>in this case the quest for enlightenment and the paradox of beauty
It's a simple allegory about the ideals of Bunyan outlined in Pilgrims progress.
>The sermon in the movie says that our now imperfect soul gets a taste of the higher existence it once knew whenever it is confronted with beauty
No, that is absolutely not it. I honestly don't get people like you who think that they can understand Malick without having read The Bible and Aristotle. The film can be easily understood with some basic study Christian Theology. You take a completely Atheistic approach and butcher his entire message. Malick would weep if he read this nonsense.
A hollow message, by a hollow white rich man with woe-is-me existential musings. Just because you think your message is good doesn't mean you can actually deliver it in a way that is convincing.
Not surprised that people on this board do not like this film. It's obvious with the amount of Star Wars threads regarding it as a masterpiece. It shows that /tv/ is stunned in emotional development and spiritual things.
>he doesn't have a strong knowledge of The Bible
>he hasn't read Aristotle
>he hasn't read Aquinas
>he hasn't read Augustine
>he hasn't read Pilgrims Progress
>he actually thinks he can understand this movie
>A fool takes no pleasure in understanding, but only in expressing his opinion.
This is a valiant effort, but you cannot grasp the meaning of the film without having read certain parts of Pilgrims Progress.
Read about Vanity Fair and the puritan movement. You will then see
If you can even begin to defend your position or why something is good and hide behind the "it just went over your head XD" argument, you should just jump off a bridge and never clutter post here again
Critics generally aren't particularly intelligent. Especially pop culture critics. Journalism school trains you to adopt the middle mind, the "popular" view that's mostly handed down from the managerial level of our civilization. And most of our cultural products and attitudes are unthinking to begin with. There's not much thought going on among our critics, and like most jobs, it's more about who you know and how well you can bullshit than what you know.
Since crafting a potently polarising masterpiece with 2011's The Tree Of Life, Malick has become a man on a mission. A mission to stuff a movie so full of coded self-indulgence it seems like a perverse joke that has misplaced its own punchline.
The result is ludicrous self-parody - somewhere between a Calvin Klein aftershave advertisement and a coffee-table book about the modernist mansions of the rich and famous.