[watch] Organic: Nature in the Films of Terrence Malick

By  · Published on June 21st, 2016

The films of Terrence Malick are nothing short of visual poetry, more like musings on ideas than straight narratives. This is in part due to the esoteric stories the director chooses to tell, and in part how they are shot. After all, when three-time Oscar-winning cinematographer Emmanuel Lubezki is your go-to D.o.P., you don’t waste him on static shots of exposition or rote stock footage shots like city skylines or crashing waves. Nature in the films of Malick are as important, if not more important, than the characters in their stories. Nature is a reflection of the themes of Malick’s movies: fields of wheat represent a personal harvest to reap in TO THE WONDER; water, oddly, comes to represent the fluidity of existence in TREE OF LIFE; swamp land represents the wild and undiscovered NEW WORLD, even BADLANDS as a geographical location also refers to the dark territory where the souls of its leads reside.

In a brand new video created by Vugar Efendi, the natural scenes of Malick’s films have been compiled into one continuous and gorgeous stream of environmental consciousness that reveal the immutable forces underlying each of his narratives and their power to pull and transform their characters like leaves tussled about by the wind.

NATURE THROUGH MALICK from Vugar Efendi on Vimeo.

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Novelist, Screenwriter, Video Essayist