Knight of Cups

Knight of Cups Image
Metascore
58

Mixed or average reviews - based on 8 Critics What's this?

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  • Summary: Knight of Cups follows writer Rick (Christian Bale) on an odyssey through the playgrounds of Los Angeles and Las Vegas as he undertakes a search for love and self. Even as he moves through a desire-laden landscape of mansions, resorts, beaches and clubs, Rick grapples over complicatedKnight of Cups follows writer Rick (Christian Bale) on an odyssey through the playgrounds of Los Angeles and Las Vegas as he undertakes a search for love and self. Even as he moves through a desire-laden landscape of mansions, resorts, beaches and clubs, Rick grapples over complicated relationships with his brother (Wes Bentley) and father (Brian Dennehy). His quest to break the spell of his disenchantment takes him on a series of adventures with six alluring women: rebellious Della (Imogen Poots); his physician ex-wife, Nancy (Cate Blanchett); a serene model Helen (Freida Pinto); a woman he wronged in the past Elizabeth (Natalie Portman); a spirited, playful stripper Karen (Teresa Palmer); and an innocent Isabel (Isabel Lucas), who helps him see a way forward. Rick moves in a daze through a strange and overwhelming dreamscape -- but can he wake up to the beauty, humanity and rhythms of life around him? The deeper he searches, the more the journey becomes his destination. Expand

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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 8
  2. Negative: 0 out of 8
  1. Reviewed by: Jessica Kiang
    Feb 8, 2015
    75
    Formally, it is even more abstract than previous Malick efforts, with on-camera dialogue kept to the barest minimum and the cast instead contributing poetic, banal or philosophical voiceover to the soundtrack, lines which overlap, fade up and fade down into music and silence, contributing to the sense of the film as a philosophical fugue state.
  2. Reviewed by: Eric Kohn
    Feb 8, 2015
    75
    Pretty and discardable in equal measures, the movie illustrates ingredients of the filmmaker's appeal while falling short of assembling them into a coherent whole.
  3. Reviewed by: Justin Chang
    Feb 8, 2015
    70
    Those who have had their fill of the director’s impressionistic musings will find his seventh feature as empty as the lifestyle it puts on display; for the rest of us, there’s no denying this star-studded, never-a-dull-moment cinematic oddity represents another flawed but fascinating reframing of man’s place in the modern world.
  4. Reviewed by: Patrick Gamble
    Feb 8, 2015
    60
    Each scene is presented like a taro card for the viewer to assign his or her own meaning. Occasionally this can lead to a profound and deeply personal connection to the film whilst at others it can feel like Malick is overreaching; with large swaths of the narrative washing over you like an agreeable summer's breeze.
  5. Reviewed by: Tim Robey
    Feb 8, 2015
    60
    Whatever Muse drives Malick, whose best work feels both found – in the sense of discovered in the shoot and edit – and profound, he could be accused of cheating on her in Knight of Cups, leapfrogging between unsatisfactory short-term conquests. His career is quite a journey, but this episode has an empty tank.
  6. Reviewed by: Todd McCarthy
    Feb 8, 2015
    50
    Malick's most distinctive ambition here is his attempt to create an almost pointilistic portrait of a man by evoking acute moments of his past and present, and this sustains real interest for a while, as you wait to see how it all might come together. But as the film just keeps offering more of the same...it doesn't build or pay off with what it seems designed to do, which is to provide either a dramatic or philosophical apotheosis.
  7. Reviewed by: Peter Bradshaw
    Feb 8, 2015
    40
    There are moments of visual brilliance here, moments of reverence and even grandeur. He is always distinctive, and anything he does must be of interest. But his style is stagnating into mannerism, cliche and self-parody.

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