To the Wonder
Location la: Redstone Theater
Dir. Terrence Malick. 2012, 113 mins. 35mm. With Olga Kurylenko, Ben Affleck, Rachel McAdams, Javier Bardem. Malick’s under-appreciated follow-up to The Tree of Life marks an era of his work defined by a fidelity to an unscripted, unrehearsed, caught-on-the-wing approach he’d incorporated into his shoots since The Thin Red Line. An American man (Affleck) and a European single mother (Kurylenko in an effervescent turn) fall madly in love in Paris. Returning with her daughter to his native Oklahoma and the promise of a new life together, the woman quickly grows despondent, the man absent, amid the remote, unpopulated surroundings of house and fence, farm and field. Taking up with his former sweetheart (McAdams), the man only grows more distant, while his increasingly isolated partner seeks solace in the councils of a local priest (Bardem). The first of a trilogy of works that turn Malick’s rapturously all-embracing eye upon the contemporary world, this lament for lost lovers finds as much astonishment in the apparition of a Sonic drive-in as Mont-Saint-Michel.
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