"Exploring the edge of life and faith in a post-everything world." - Todd Littleton
"I don't need another reason to believe, your love is all around for me to see." - Anon
"Thou art our need; and in giving us more of thyself thou givest us all." - Khalil Gibran, Prayer XXIII
"Be careful what you pretend to be. You become what you pretend to be." - Kurt Vonnegut
"Religious beliefs, far from being primary, are often shaped and adjusted by our social goals." - Jim Forest
"People, even more than things, need to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed, and redeemed; never throw out anyone." - Anon
"... Certainly God's love has made fools of us all." - R.E. Slater
"An apocalyptic Christian faith doesn't wait for Jesus to come, but for Jesus to become in our midst." - R.E. Slater
"Christian belief in God begins with the cross and resurrection of Jesus, not with rational apologetics." - Eberhard Jüngel, Jürgen Moltmann
"Our knowledge of God is through the 'I-Thou' encounter, not in finding God at the end of a syllogism or argument.
There is a grave danger in any Christian treatment of God as an object. The God of Jesus Christ and Scripture is
irreducibly subject and never made as an object, a force, a power, or a principle that can be manipulated." - Emil Brunner
"Ehyeh Asher Ehyeh" means "I will be that who I have yet to become." - God (Ex 3.14)

Monday, December 5, 2011

The Tree of Life

 





The Tree of Life Movie
Official Trailer (HD)







The Tree of Life - Lacrimosa
From the opening scenes







Lacrimosa (Requiem)
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart [lyrics]




The Requiem Mass in D minor by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was composed in Vienna in 1791, during the last year of the composer's life. 'Lacrimosa' is part of that Requiem Mass and -for me- reveals some of the deepest feelings of human beings and one of mankind's biggest fears: Death.


Lacrimosa dies illa                                              Mournful that day
Qua resurget ex favilla                                     When from the ashes shall rise
Judicandus homo reus.                                    Guilty man to be judged.

Lacrimosa dies illa                                               Mournful that day
Qua resurget ex favilla                                      When from the ashes shall rise
Judicandus homo reus.                                     Guilty man to be judged.

Huic ergo parce, Deus:                                      Lord have mercy on him
Pie Jesu Domine.                                                 Gentle Lord Jesus.

Huic ergo parce, Deus:                                      Lord have mercy on him
Pie Jesu Domine.                                                 Gentle Lord Jesus.

Dona eis requiem.                                               Grant them eternal rest.
Dona eis requiem.                                               Grant them eternal rest.

Amen.                                                                       Amen.


 
8. Mozart's Requiem-Lacrimosa
lyrics+translation

 
 
 
 
 
Greatest Film Scene
Tree of Life Formation Scene
(15 mins)
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Alert: Spoilers below

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If you want to go into Tree of Life as innocent as possible, you may want to avoid the section below and video to follow that discuss some of the themes running through the narrative.




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The impressionistic story of a Texas family in the 1950s. The film follows the life journey of the eldest son, Jack, through the innocence of childhood to his disillusioned adult years as he tries to reconcile a complicated relationship with his father (Brad Pitt). Jack (played as an adult by Sean Penn) finds himself a lost soul in the modern world, seeking answers to the origins and meaning of life while questioning the existence of faith.Written by alfiehitchie




The Tree of Life is a 2011 American drama with experimental elements written and directed by Terrence Malick and starring Sean Penn, Brad Pitt, and Jessica Chastain. Malick's film chronicles the origins and meaning of life by way of a middle-aged man's childhood memories of his family living in 1950s Texas, interspersed with imagery of the origins of the universe and the inception of life on Earth. After decades in development and missed 2009 and 2010 release dates, the film premiered in competition at the 2011 Cannes Film Festival, where it won the Palme d'Or. The film received polarizing reactions in response to Malick's use of technical and artistic imagery, directorial style, and fragmented non-linear narrative.



My Review

The Tree of Life can be a tediously long movie at 139 minutes - even for one perhaps sympathetic with its larger-than-life themes. And when confronted with the conflicted human stories interwoven within, the film becomes as personally disturbing, as it is confronting, to our own life stories being lived out in the present tense. Especially when considering the several life angles being explored from the characters' perspectives. For myself, I found it hard to separate from either the father or the child's perspectives, each as tragically interlaced with sorrow and failure, as they were with disappointment and a chilling coldness - even numbness - to loved ones and hurting family members.

As the film concludes it leaves one breathing a sigh of relief that it had reached some kind of resolution, however disquieting or incomplete, but at least moving towards some sense of personal comprehension and completion. And at the same time it leaves the viewer with the feeling of not knowing what to do with everything just witnessed on the silver screen. Mostly, the theater is silent, with small expressions of confusion flowing between dumbfounded viewers cloister within their inner sanctums of insanity, as we each filed out quietly, like one from a morgue or a funeral, tragically torn by grief and death.

It is only in aftermath's reflection that one feels the better for having viewed it's portrayals. A view that provides one with the hard-earned life experiences of individuals detailing their personal bitterness and failures. Each uncomfortably absorbed by remorse and truth. And perhaps obtaining a small amount of self-conscious understanding, or dearly needed forgiveness, however ill-timed or belatedly received. It also left me with the strong feeling that this film should be honestly viewed by every prospective couple contemplating parenthood. Or by every wronged child, now grown. So great its life portraits of our human frailties and misjudgments. Aloneness and isolations. Misguided plans and benighted resolutions to that dream of life we had first beheld in childhood's innocence.

Further, this review here does not even begin to touch on the many thematic elements interwoven throughout the film's length and breadth. One that should first be worked-out by the film-goer before hearing the excellent insights gained from the actor's point of view (presented next, below). A video clip which helps to explain this dreadfully realistic film much better than I have. Leaving one with a deeper thanksgiving to its terrible truths and fearsome depths which we must every-so-often be confronted by in order to better appreciate this short life we are given by God to endure, and to make some sense of. A film that might help us be better human beings for having actively contemplated and discussed it with friends and family.

R.E. Slater
December 5, 2011



Los Angeles Times
May 25, 2011

Tree of Life is a pure mystery to most movie-goers out there.

Even those who've seen it from Cannes has vague and generally mysterious ways of describing it.

24 Frames posted this video which features Brad Pitt and other members of the cast talking about what Tree of Life is and what the production meant to everyone involved.

In three minutes I have a much firmer grasp on what Tree of LIfe may actually be about, as opposed to cryptic talk from anyone who's seen it.

Check out the short video below, and prepared to finally be enlightened.



Note: This doesn't contain spoilers, but if you want to go into Tree of Life as innocent as possible, you may want to avoid this video since it discusses some of the themes running through the narrative.



If the video does not begin go to the link below.
This is an excellent review by the Los Angeles Times.