Brad Pitt and Sean Penn star in Terrence Malick’s 1950s adventure about a confused man named Jack, who sets off on a journey to understand the true nature of the world. Growing up in the Midwest with two brothers, Jack has always been torn between his mother’s guidance to approach everything he encounters with an open heart and his father’s advice to look after his own interests. Now, Jack must find a way to regain purpose and perspective. (Netflix)
This movie just screams I’M POIGNANT AND ARTSY! GIVE ME AN OSCAR! But honestly, it tries too hard. About 18 minutes in, the movie inexplicably turns into a 15 minute nature documentary featuring clouds, water, volcanoes exploding, dinosaurs, and fetuses. All backed up by opera, other incidental instrumental music, and Jessica Chastain musing about her dead kid and God. I’m not kidding. Brad Pitt does a god job as Mr. O’Brien. It is obvious he actually loves his family, he just doesn’t know HOW to love, which affects the son Jack, both as a kid and an adult, played by Sean Penn. Who, honestly, didn’t even need to be in the movie, he was only in like 10 minutes. The thing about this movie is that there is a beautiful story of fathers/sons and family buried underneath all of the excess. It’s a shame we had to miss out on it.