Nolan and Fincher Discuss Malick in New 'Tree of Life' Featurette

Tree of Life poster

Fox Searchlight debuted the following featurette for The Tree of Life on Apple in a smart-but-obvious attempt to get online Christopher Nolan (The Dark Knight Rises) and David Fincher (The Social Network) fanboys to bite and go check out Terrence Malick's new film as the two much loved directors dote lovingly on the acclaimed director.

Nolan opens the piece saying, "Terrence Malick, more than almost any other filmmaker I can name, his work is immediately recognizable. His films are all very, very connected with each other and they're very recognizably his work, but it's very tough to put your finger on why that is or what you're seeing in that the technique is not immediately obvious."

Nolan continues, adding, "When you think of a visual style, when you think of the visual language of a film, there tends to be a natural separation of the visual style and the narrative elements. But with the greats, whether it's Stanley Kubrick or Terrence Malick or Hitchcock, what you're seeing is an inseparable, a vital relationship between the image and the story it's telling."

Drawing one comparison between Malick and Fincher is almost obvious as the two are both known to be meticulous in their filmmaking process. In this regard Fincher says, "I think that with Malick you're seeing something that was thought about and meditated over and you're seeing somebody who's making choices that are specifically designed to evoke a feeling."

To hear what else the two directors say check out the following featurette and look for The Tree of Life in theaters now and for a list of dates and cities it's coming to click here. It's finally opening in Seattle this weekend and after reviewing it at Cannes, I think I am finally ready to see it again.

  • samir

    man finally opening in Seattle. Can't wait to see it. I just wish Cinerama was playing this instead of Green Lantern.

    • Brad Brevet

      Agreed, but there is no way Tree of Life could match the money Lanter will bring in... unfortunately. My recommendation would be Lincoln Square, though the Egyptian could make for a fun viewing.

  • Rob Bowman

    I am glad you will be going again. I remember your initial reaction was left needing a second viewing to see how it would evolve in your mind. I saw it on Monday here in Denver and will see it again soon. I told my wife a tip a friend had used in an argument defending Malick's reputation in a bar (perfect!) which is that most filmmakers make novels and Malick makes poems.

    Tree of Life seems particularly suited to that description as the whole film is organized in stanzas, essentially. It is on my Top Ten All Time list. I look forward to your second thoughts.

  • Philip @ rob b

    wow, that's an interesting insight of malick's ouvre and i think you pretty much put everything in the nutshell with the novel-poem analogy.

    • Rob Bowman

      Thanks! The initial comment was a friend of mine he shared with me before either of us had seen Tree but I couldn't help but think it is dead on for Tree of Life. The glowing, pulsing star (?) that separated the pieces really seemed to conjure the stanza idea. The more I think about it, the more I want to write a paper about it.

  • C138

    It's always cool to see two great directors talking about another great director. I just saw The Tree of Life for the second time today, after having thought about it and let it rest in my head for a couple of weeks. The second time around I found it to be much more emotionally engaging than the first, although I still think that the film has some flaws. Nonetheless, it's still a pretty terrific piece of filmmaking, even if it all doesn't work as well as it was likely intended to.

  • Alejandro Roggio

    The Tree of Life is winning Best Picture. CALLING IT.

  • MajorFilmFan

    Nolan, Fincher, and Mallick all have two things in common: the each are BRILIANT storytellers, and they each have their own style of bringing those stories to life. When you watch a film by either of these three directors, it stays with you. You find yourself thinking about it endlessly. All 3 are National (and in Nolan's case International) treasures