Fox Searchlight Pictures | Release Date: May 27, 2011
7.0
USER SCORE
Generally favorable reviews based on 643 Ratings
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Positive:
437
Mixed:
86
Negative:
120
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chambolinskiOct 12, 2011
Perhaps because the film's so gorgeous and there have been so many gushing reviews folks are afraid of appearing uncool if they say this movie was the psychotic exercise of someone with way too much money and not anyone around him honestPerhaps because the film's so gorgeous and there have been so many gushing reviews folks are afraid of appearing uncool if they say this movie was the psychotic exercise of someone with way too much money and not anyone around him honest enough to say hey Terry knock off this talking-to-god lunacy. Expand
2 of 6 users found this helpful24
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1
felbert55Nov 10, 2011
It's not film worthy of review because it's not really a film. The first half-hour is filled with extraordinary cinematography that belongs in a segment of the Discovery Channel's Planet Earth. The rest is unintelligible bizarre nonsense.It's not film worthy of review because it's not really a film. The first half-hour is filled with extraordinary cinematography that belongs in a segment of the Discovery Channel's Planet Earth. The rest is unintelligible bizarre nonsense. It has no "narrative." Like abstract art I suppose those who love it make up something to explain it's meaning. Somewhere in the 6 lines of dialogue Brad Pitt defines "subjective" as something in your own mind that cannot be proved (or disproved) by others. All opinions are subjective and I respect those of others, but it's amazing to me that anyone could call this mind-numbing experience a masterpiece of film making. Imagine if the "acid trip" scene from Easy Rider had been the entire film. That's what this is... just a lot longer. Expand
1 of 3 users found this helpful12
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1
DHEDec 3, 2011
This movie gets my King-has-no-clothes award for the most inexplicably highly rated movie of the year (previous winners: Forrest Gump, Before Sunset). It was basically 2 hours of my life that I'll never get back. I spent the first hourThis movie gets my King-has-no-clothes award for the most inexplicably highly rated movie of the year (previous winners: Forrest Gump, Before Sunset). It was basically 2 hours of my life that I'll never get back. I spent the first hour waiting for the movie to start and the last hour waiting for it to end. Somehow, I made it to the finish, but not without a cost: the wasted effort that went into trying (and I did try) to find even a moment worth watching on any level left me feeling cranky and cheated. The movie did not make me laugh, cry, think, or wonder; it was monumentally unmoving. The spirituality at its core was soaringly sophomoric (not to mention off-putting). If it was meant to serve as a unifying theme linking everything (and by "everything" I mean everything) in a halo of enlightenment, the actual effect was closer to self-parody. I get the set up -- tough-love Dad suppressing his own dreams and trying (yet not trying) to make emotional connections, and the toll his own internal struggle takes on the family -- but there was so little to like about the characters that I found myself hoping the movie gods would drop a large heavy object on the lot of them, much like the eldest son wished the God-god would drop a car on his father. In some ways, the mother, presumably meant to be the sympathetic figure in the story, was the least likable of the lot (good luck with that Grace thing). Or maybe it was the oldest son, molded into a wretched little torturer by the contradictory and capricious demands of his father, that we were meant to empathize with. Whatever; it didn't work. The number 2 (?) son (call him Trust) flickered around the edges accompanied by a general "goodness" vibe, but never quite materialized into a person, and the third son was virtually indistinguishable from the other neighborhood kids. One of the three sons somehow grows up to be Sean Penn, a successful urban professional (architect?) whose stoic middle-distance gaze appears meant to speak wordlessly (literally) to unsettled "issues". It's not quite like I don't have anything good to say about the movie. Brad Pitt was great, as always. (I'd watch him read a phone book; in fact, I'd rather have watched him read a phone book). Sean Penn is always interesting to look at, even if he's not really doing anything. Dinosaurs (yes, dinosaurs) made a brief, but engaging appearance (maybe Malick can use these scenes as starter material for a logically dialog-free movie). And one last thing: If you got rid of all the scenes with people, it would make a halfway decent screensaver. Expand
1 of 3 users found this helpful12
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0
MorriBeySep 3, 2011
Roger Moore from the Orlando Sentinel review says it all. "Glibly put, this challenging time-skipping rumination is the big screen equivalent of watching that "Tree" grow."
The only good thing is that now i know which reviewer to follow.
Roger Moore from the Orlando Sentinel review says it all. "Glibly put, this challenging time-skipping rumination is the big screen equivalent of watching that "Tree" grow."
The only good thing is that now i know which reviewer to follow. Nothing more to say.
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1 of 3 users found this helpful12
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0
cbibejsSep 21, 2011
I felt like this movie 5 hours length. So Einstein's theory of relativity says this movie is not good.Also it proved to me not every movie of Brad Pitt is will be good.This movie is just a slide show of some beautiful scenery with worthless story.
1 of 3 users found this helpful12
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2
Egypt1amAug 20, 2011
What did I miss? I hated this movie! It felt kind the actors were playing their parts by satellite linkup; zero chemistry. Very disappointing and roof that you can through all your money behind a great cast and still mess it up :(
1 of 3 users found this helpful12
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2
CfjhennSep 20, 2011
If I were to stare at the my screensaver, peppered as it is with pretty vacation snaps and family memories, for 2 hours I would feel nearly as fulfilled. Derealisation is a recognised phenomena associated with staring at disconnected,If I were to stare at the my screensaver, peppered as it is with pretty vacation snaps and family memories, for 2 hours I would feel nearly as fulfilled. Derealisation is a recognised phenomena associated with staring at disconnected, sometimes abstract, images... sadly that associated sensation of transcendency is illusory, an epiphenomenon. That said, that gushing awe and realisation happens no more freely with this pretentious, introspective movie, than with my photo slideshow, the difference being my computer can skip forward past some of the tedium. Expand
1 of 3 users found this helpful12
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0
swannerandjuddSep 26, 2011
It's a Turd. I don't know what i was watching and frankly i don't care. There is no true linear story, it was like watching an environmental dvd and someone's boring home movies. i'm not surprised they boo'd at Cannes. It's like the Emperor'sIt's a Turd. I don't know what i was watching and frankly i don't care. There is no true linear story, it was like watching an environmental dvd and someone's boring home movies. i'm not surprised they boo'd at Cannes. It's like the Emperor's New Clothes...no one wants to doubt his genius but i will. It's a turd...a big smelly turd. Expand
1 of 3 users found this helpful12
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1
mariopingDec 27, 2011
Ok, people, I don't get it. Why does this film end up on so many critics' top 10 (in many cases, the top of the top)??? I like movies that are deep and thought provoking but The Tree of Life is just absolutely boring and self serving. ThereOk, people, I don't get it. Why does this film end up on so many critics' top 10 (in many cases, the top of the top)??? I like movies that are deep and thought provoking but The Tree of Life is just absolutely boring and self serving. There is a line between artsy and just self serving. This film is the latter in my opinion. Sure, the movie is beautifully filmed with many spectacular scenes but what's that gotta to do with the story? I feel director Mr. Malick feels like he can do anything mindless and some critics out there will call it a piece of art. I am glad I am entitled to my opinion. Expand
1 of 3 users found this helpful12
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3
trujustinJan 3, 2012
Tree of Life is an attempted artistic expression, which I encourage and appreciate. You will not see many films like it. The problem is that the movie has no entertainment value. If you are going to watch this movie, expect to watch theTree of Life is an attempted artistic expression, which I encourage and appreciate. You will not see many films like it. The problem is that the movie has no entertainment value. If you are going to watch this movie, expect to watch the ultimate art house film. If it isn't your niche then you will be bored senseless. Expand
1 of 3 users found this helpful12
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1
tomeqJun 11, 2011
Total triumph of form over content. This movie is pathetically obvious, so daub that it hurts. Tons of cheap cliches. Movie just screams on me with obviousness. After 2 and a half hour of movie I was unable to tell what is this movie allTotal triumph of form over content. This movie is pathetically obvious, so daub that it hurts. Tons of cheap cliches. Movie just screams on me with obviousness. After 2 and a half hour of movie I was unable to tell what is this movie all about. One will say - about life. Come on. This kind of story was told several hundred of times. This is neither new or interesting - it is simple as a brick. The worst movies are those that gives you nothing and you come out of cinema with nothing in head. This one is even worse - leaves you distaste and feeling of being cheated. Complete waste of time. Expand
3 of 10 users found this helpful37
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3
jay215Jun 30, 2011
Indulgent mess of a movie. Had potential but the worse sin is to bore your audience and he did that. The casting of Sean Penn was inexplicable. Brad Pitt was actually not bad, but opportunity missed overall.
2 of 7 users found this helpful25
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1
futurehousesMay 29, 2011
Painful experience, this movie was really bad. The lack of story and important elements turns it into a film in front of which you are bound to fall asleep if not for very strong will power. I'm even reconsidering giving this 1 on 10 ...Painful experience, this movie was really bad. The lack of story and important elements turns it into a film in front of which you are bound to fall asleep if not for very strong will power. I'm even reconsidering giving this 1 on 10 ...
After merely 10 minutes, people were already leaving from the cinema. This movie was a joke. Sean Penn acts two minutes at the beginning and for approximately the same duration at the end. His mention on the film advertisements is a real steal. He doesn't even speak, barely ...
The opening cosmos-creation scenes are interesting, but fairly boring after sitting for 30 minutes in front of them while listening to the snoring of the man at your right (who gave up at the very start).
Well, I do not recommend this feature, which is a very poor one in my opinion.
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3 of 11 users found this helpful38
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1
jeroenJun 24, 2011
just, i don't know... I had to laugh by a movie trying so hard to explain why God takes away children. It is because God's creation is so much bigger apparently, we are just a tiny part of it. There are dinosaurs and the cosmos and thejust, i don't know... I had to laugh by a movie trying so hard to explain why God takes away children. It is because God's creation is so much bigger apparently, we are just a tiny part of it. There are dinosaurs and the cosmos and the universe (see Hubble pictures). You know? It was said in the bible to Job. "Where were you when I created the earth, you arrogant **** don't complain". In the end we all go to heaven and then you'll get to see all your loved ones back that have gone. You have to walk through a door that is standing in a desert and if you do then you will find lots of people in white robes that walk barefooted on a beach. Yup, that's them, your long lost ones. Aren't you glad you now know where they've been all that time? It is a very spiritual experience and I gained much insight in life's deeper meaning. Zzzzz..... Expand
4 of 15 users found this helpful411
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1
metamtamMay 31, 2011
The first 20 minutes are a succession of postcard shots with no consistency and no dialogs. No story telling, people don't talk, they just whisper "god... oh god... please god...". It was so centered on religion that it became both boring andThe first 20 minutes are a succession of postcard shots with no consistency and no dialogs. No story telling, people don't talk, they just whisper "god... oh god... please god...". It was so centered on religion that it became both boring and ridiculous in a matter of minutes. This does not deserve to be called a movie, it only felt like a scam. Even Lost Highway immediately makes more sense than that! Expand
3 of 12 users found this helpful39
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0
nomdiploomJul 28, 2011
Shamefully derivative, in love with its own symbolism, and at least 30 minutes too long. First glimpse of eternity---fine, I got it. But after a zillion Hubble shots---would have prefered waterboarding!!
Go back to film school. At least the
Shamefully derivative, in love with its own symbolism, and at least 30 minutes too long. First glimpse of eternity---fine, I got it. But after a zillion Hubble shots---would have prefered waterboarding!!
Go back to film school. At least the costumers got it right.
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2 of 8 users found this helpful26
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1
JDIAMONDJun 5, 2011
This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Worst movie ever 20 people got up and left I wish I had and gotten my money back.
What were they thinking............................................................................
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2 of 8 users found this helpful26
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1
csw12Mar 26, 2012
Can someone explain to me what i just sat through because i can't. was it a movie? was there a story? No and no. The director should never make a movie again. Extremely boring with annoying people throughout. Made no sense at all. Couldn'tCan someone explain to me what i just sat through because i can't. was it a movie? was there a story? No and no. The director should never make a movie again. Extremely boring with annoying people throughout. Made no sense at all. Couldn't wait for it to be over. Horrible. Expand
1 of 4 users found this helpful13
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3
LISTEN2MEMay 27, 2011
This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Beautiful to look at but a big snore for big parts of the film. How many exploding galaxies, space blobs, microbes and waterfall shots can you have in one film? The CGI of the dinosaurs wasn't great. Brad Pitt is excellent but you want more of that story later in the 60s and less of the endless creation sequences. The ending is long, tedious and not captivating. Disappointing. Much rather watch Badlands or Days of Heaven again. An excellent visual experiment that doesn't connect emotionally, except in a couple of brief scenes. Expand
2 of 9 users found this helpful27
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0
DigitalkidMar 10, 2012
Tree of Life is trying so hard to be something deep and symbolic, that it's just ridiculous. Now I see the world with the eyes of a happy innocent child, and then I see miracles of god's creation, and then I see some drama from young man'sTree of Life is trying so hard to be something deep and symbolic, that it's just ridiculous. Now I see the world with the eyes of a happy innocent child, and then I see miracles of god's creation, and then I see some drama from young man's past.. So put it together for god's sake! It's like I saw 100500 art-house movies, so now I can make my own. NO! Expand
1 of 5 users found this helpful14
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3
frozenpinkyJan 22, 2012
Feast or famine is the deal here, there's no in-between. It's a love or hate movie. To sum up this movie, Tree of Life is a 138 min screen saver. Just because something looks good doesnt translate to being a good movie, good story, or good concept.
1 of 5 users found this helpful14
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0
shastabobNov 19, 2011
Like other viewers of this movie, I registered for Metacritic only because of this movie. And yes I too am an educated movie-goer... And yes this movie sucked. A complete waste of time. Others here said it perfectly. Nothing else needs to beLike other viewers of this movie, I registered for Metacritic only because of this movie. And yes I too am an educated movie-goer... And yes this movie sucked. A complete waste of time. Others here said it perfectly. Nothing else needs to be added. Spoiler? That is impossible because there is no plot. Expand
1 of 6 users found this helpful15
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1
paulaldJun 4, 2011
It is a well-known cinema fact that any movie with both people and dinosaurs can not be good. I wonder how long it took Sean Penn to learn his lines.
1 of 9 users found this helpful18
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3
wishmasterSep 16, 2011
Disappointing movie, 10 minutes thought I was watching a documentary wtf.! they did not understand a plot way too rare and really boring ... the only thing salvageable is the excellent cinematography, the soundtrack and sound effects .. theDisappointing movie, 10 minutes thought I was watching a documentary wtf.! they did not understand a plot way too rare and really boring ... the only thing salvageable is the excellent cinematography, the soundtrack and sound effects .. the rest next.! Expand
0 of 3 users found this helpful03
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2
MukulApr 8, 2013
I want to review this movie but because as I have just finished it,I am extremely sleepy.
I am someone who gets very much intrigued by life and its spiritual meanings-but THIS has bored me to hell.I mean this shouldn't be termed as a movie
I want to review this movie but because as I have just finished it,I am extremely sleepy.
I am someone who gets very much intrigued by life and its spiritual meanings-but THIS has bored me to hell.I mean this shouldn't be termed as a movie at all.It's an philosophical educational ride.
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0 of 1 users found this helpful01
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2
Baggins_ozNov 5, 2013
This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I begin by stating that I love cinema that isn't afraid to be different. I love to be challenged. But this film struck me as being self indulgent pretentious film-making at its worst.

There is an outline of good story hidden in there, and one that deserved a far better telling; the story of a family falling to pieces and struggling to hold itself together...and perhaps a chance to explore how a tragedy affects these dynamics.

Instead we are presented with some loosely sketched hints of metaphysics and ruminations on God. There is also an interminable section that follows the birth of the Universe, formation of the Earth and Dinosuar extinction very much like it was lifted from NatGeo (or lifted from Fantasia)...which I struggle to find any link to the story being told. Yes, they were very pretty pictures, but what purpose did they serve?

On the positive side, the cinematography is stunning. There are truly breathtaking images, and even mundane scenes are shot with brilliance.
The acting is amazing the whole cast inhabit the characters they portray. Which is all the more reason I am so dissappointed; this film could have been so much better.
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0 of 2 users found this helpful02
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0
SirLouenJan 16, 2015
Regrets for the people that went to cinema so see something that could be actually interesting and ended losing 2 hours of their lives + extra 10 bucks :(
0 of 1 users found this helpful01
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3
EssenceOfSugarApr 11, 2012
Visually stunning with no significant plotline. Films like these where the special effects outdo the well-crafted hopefully not too complicated plotline, yet amass a vast quantity of critical acclaim, make me question how desperate filmVisually stunning with no significant plotline. Films like these where the special effects outdo the well-crafted hopefully not too complicated plotline, yet amass a vast quantity of critical acclaim, make me question how desperate film companies are in order to achieve at least a satisfactory level. Probably the only perfect reason why it got the Palme D'or at the Cannes Film Festival was because it has the god-like standard and wonderful form of the special effects to make it look professional. Although, I did enjoy how insignificant we are in this universe, cue the 'stunning visual effects' again, which is compared to how we live, but due to what I said earlier, I would nominate this for a 'one-watch only' award, as this didn't seem anything to go on. I find it is better to stick up for the films which are genuinely good but unappreciated and sometimes immorally slammed by the critics, than to sugar coat the films that do not deserve even a satisfactory review. The film was confusing, and Sean Penn was barely in it. Funny how the beginning can be compared to 2001: A Space Odyssey, which I'd rather watch, because it is beautiful and has a plot, and I want to doubt that this film will ever be a classic compared to a Stanley Kubrick film. I never liked Brad Pitt anyway. Expand
0 of 3 users found this helpful03
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commenter-xMar 24, 2012
A movie as deep, meaningful and exquisitely crafted as a Powerpoint presentation. The genius of it, is being so vague that anyone can interpret it as they see fit. Question the reviewers that give this movie an amazing score the same way youA movie as deep, meaningful and exquisitely crafted as a Powerpoint presentation. The genius of it, is being so vague that anyone can interpret it as they see fit. Question the reviewers that give this movie an amazing score the same way you question the people who find the Virgin Mary on a piece of toast. Trust your instincts. That urge to yawn and look at your watch while this is playing is not your fault. Comparing this to Kubrick is an insult. Kubrick movies had abstract elements, but they were never boring. Even so, Kubrick never had the unanimous praise Malick gets for turds like these. Help your fellow movie watcher and classify all 10/10 reviews of this movie as "unhelpful". This emperor is as clothed as a Sphynx cat. Expand
0 of 3 users found this helpful03
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3
donvisciniNov 20, 2011
Is this even a movie. It seems to be more like a piece of unfinished art, ready for ordinary ppl to give it it's final touch? i don't know whether to be positive or negative about ToL. The switch between scenes often doesnt seem to have anyIs this even a movie. It seems to be more like a piece of unfinished art, ready for ordinary ppl to give it it's final touch? i don't know whether to be positive or negative about ToL. The switch between scenes often doesnt seem to have any logic. You could play the whole movie backwards and still feel the same about it. I would only recommend this movie to ppl ho have a little bit of affinity with religion, otherwise youd be wasting 2 hours of your life Expand
0 of 2 users found this helpful02
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