Having now seen this booteg webcam version of the trailer for Terrence Malick ‘s The Tree of Life, I think I can answer Stephen Zeitchik‘s question about “what the to-do is about.” It’s basically saying that the cosmic light of the altogether is right out there and right within us, but the rough and tumble of survival (along with some brutal parenting at the hands of a guy like Brad Pitt‘s character) keeps us in a morose and damaged place. And what a sadness that is.
This is a very touching and trippy trailer, for what it is. It got to me. And I’m glad there are no dinosaurs. I still say that only problem with this film is that flat-footed title, which has always grated.
Kids who grew up in the ’50s and ’60s under the tough, gruff and goading fathers like Pitt’s character suffered significantly, and in many cases passed it along with interest. Dysfunction breeds dysfunction. Hurt people hurt people. Pitt’s character’s generational view was primarily shaped by the Great Depression and World War II, which told them that awful things happen to people who aren’t strong and resourceful and prepared, and awful things can still happen to good people due to bad luck and happenstance.