There was such a beautiful cast, and the promise of a truly beautiful movie.
However, the problem here is that I would not call these seemingly unrelated and sluggish scenes a movie.
We do not know anything about the characters and what they are doing, in the end it is only about visuals and sometimes music, but I expect so much more from a movie when I go to the theater. I rarely wanted to leave the theater in the middle of a movie so much, and promised myself I would not force myself to endure the same kind of experience again after watching this movie. In short, I would just say that life is too short and there are too many good films out there to waste any minute watching this pretentious and pointless movie.
Terrence Malick have made better versions of this film years earlier. After his 21st century peak in The Tree of Life everything that followed are just residues of that success. Here we've got another set of characters that are lost and longing, but they aren't as interesting as in his previous works - that's the law of diminishing returns. They're just beautiful people filmed in beautiful places murmuring words we've already heard before in a superior Malick film and it is too thematically identical to Knight of Cups.It stars Ryan Gosling who does Gosling things, Michael Fassbender playing like a lesser version of his character in Shame, and other big names like Natalie Portman, Rooney Mara and Cate Blanchett. It also featured Patti Smith playing herself and opening up about her real life, but she chose the wrong Malick film.This is a perfect example of self-parody. Malick is too old now to take another long break, and I just wish he still has one film left in him to catch us off guard.
The only thing good one can say about Song to song it is it is not the abject failure of Thin Red Line.
It is fairly obvious what Malik is doing with Song to Song, it is, like Knight of Cups, self referential blaming of his failure on externalities. That is pitiful enough. AT least is not as abjectly laughable as Thin Red Line, which managed to hit a trifecta of destroying the lessons and point of view of one of the best novelized portray of combat, ignore Jones point of the brutality AND necessity of that war and combine that all with abject absurd combat scenes.
At first I did not realize it was Malick, and after a few minutes I thought, "Terence Malick wannabe." Then I read the credits. Oh. Oops. It's sad when a brilliant director looks like a wannabe of himself.After half an hour of watching Rooney Mara drift aimlessly across whatever scenery she was in, wearing the exact same expression no matter what, looking too sensitive to live, wafting this way and that without purpose or intention, drooping over balconies and at windows and in chairs, ducking her head as if expecting to be smacked, avoiding eye contact, clutching a strand of hair to her lips, casting doe eyes at everyone from passers-by to her own father, as the camera swoops and swivels, I gave up. I like Malick, I loved some of his earlier movies, as incoherent as some of them have been. But this was just annoying. I wanted to smack her. You have these great actors floating aimlessly through a completely untethered series of images and scenes with annoyingly and pointlessly restless cameras and random cuts to other equally random scenes. I could not even begin to give a spoiler alert, for that would imply that there is a plot, or a story, or a thread of narrative, however tenuous.