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Malick's two best films. The Tree of Life wins.
Ooooooh snap, y'all. I was blown away by both of these (and I mean BLOWN AWAY), but I found Tree of Life to be the more touching experience. I love Malick's style, but The Thin Red Line lingers just a bit too much towards the end. Just a little bit. The Tree of Life had me tearing up. More than any other movie I've ever seen, it truly is the kind of movie you will get out of what you bring into it, if that makes sense. And I just want to point out how amazed I am by how many people find it to be a pessimistic movie. I totally disagree and I have no idea where that sentiment is coming from.
These movies are both about as good as any movie I've ever seen. In a crunch, though, I would pick The Tree of Life. The Thin Red Line is a great film but sometimes I wish it was as free-wheeling as TTOL.
The Thin Red Line is much, much better. Tree of Life drags on and on and goes nowhere.
I'm actually gonna go for the Thin Red Line simply because I found it to be more poignant. But that's probably because I've seen the film like 10 times and I'm constantly astonished by how magnificent it is. The first half of the Tree of Life is even better. But I think the 3rd Act is weak and a bit too sloppy whereas the Thin Red Line is strongest in the 3rd Act. So I guess that's why it wins. Both films are masterpieces, it's just my personal preference.
two transcendently beautiful masterpieces from malick, but i prefer the tree of life's massive scope and personal feeling
Malick's films can be accused of many things but lack of ambition isn't one of them. Both of these jaw-dropping masterpieces are serious contenders for his most ambitious film.