...and apparently it was even worse than he expected. (Charles previously wrote a review entitled "I Haven't Seen Tree of Life but I Hate It".)

The Tree of Life, Terrence Malick's fifth film and the winner of the 2011 Palme d'Or (in 2010, it was Apichatpong Weerasethakul's brilliant Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Livesthis decade's cinema opens on a very loud metaphysical note), is composed of four sections. The first section has two parts: One is set in the past (the 1950s), and the other is set in the present. In the past, a couple (Brad Pitt and Jessica Chastain) deals with the death of one of their three sons; in the present, one of the sons (Sean Penn) remembers the death of his brother. This section as a whole moves swiftly (the camera gliding, swirling, swerving in and out of rooms and hallways) and is severely fragmented—now we are in the small town, now we are in an elevator that's rising up the spine of a skyscraper, now we are with the mother being consoled, now we are in a conference room with a view of other corporate towers, now we are next to an airplane that's preparing to fly at that hour of the day when the owl of Minerva spreads its wings.

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