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Days Of Heaven

 
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Days Of Heaven - 18/4/2006 5:35:39 PM   
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RE: Days Of Heaven - 19/4/2006 1:53:44 PM   
Peter A. Quinn


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Days of Heaven is a film that positively groans under the weight of it's achingly gorgeous images. Director Terence Malick and his cinematographer Nestor Alemendros invest every frame with beautiful, poetic imagery, given voice by the film's youngest character, a teenage migrant worker(Linda Manz). She, her brother(Richard Gere), and his girlfriend(Brooke Adams) go to work on a farm owned by a wealthy but lonely man (Sam Shepard). When the girlfriend marries the farm-owner, they all become rich, and begin to live the Days of Heaven of the film's title. But there's a flip-side to their good fortune, and it's to Malick's credit he can tell the story in just over 90 minutes, never allowing the film to outstay it's welcome. This is a film once seen, never forgotten. A 70's masterpiece.

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RE: Days Of Heaven - 7/4/2007 1:35:12 AM   
furrybastard

 

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From: Ireland
Just watched this for the Movie Club (so late everytime!).

Absolutely beautiful film. Every image is carefully crafted and this is about as close to visual poetry as you'll ever get.

The performances are all great, in particular The Farmer and the young girl who gives the voiceover to the film. The relationship between the two main lovers is lovingly handled. Very little dialogue - everything is said with gestures and glances. The locust scene in particular is one of the film's most powerful scenes.

The characters are caught up in the world Malick creates. Vulnerable, quiet figures that only add to the solemn nature of the film.

Of the two Malick films I've seen (this and Badlands), I'd say I prefer Badlands but the two have a lot of similarities yet are more than different enough to stand on their own feet. Time to track down The thin Red Line and The New World, methinks.

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RE: Days Of Heaven - 7/4/2007 5:35:57 PM   
travel_crazy


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I posted my review on this other thread...

http://www.empireonline.com/forum/tm.asp?m=1263506

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RE: Days Of Heaven - 8/4/2007 7:51:27 PM   
Axel Foley


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Yes it is indeed a beatiful film. As much a celebration of nature and the fields on which America grew, as a love triangle. When animals are moving across the shot the humans take second place, but they are captured with enough substance though actions alone, for the story to be clear. The voiceover gives events a feeling of nostalgia and reminiscence, though it is is not wholly necessary.

Fpr some reason the stark image of the farmhouse stands out in my mind, even against the swarms of locust. Malick captures it in an almost off the cuff way: it is just there and stands strong through the tumult around it.

Thin Red Line is well worth catch. Similar focus on nature, as it carries on digusted perhaps, but mostly unconcerned by the carnage unfolding around it. Without going into too many details, it is not just a great war film, but a great film about humanity. The New World I found less liekable.

Malick seems to float of into a world more abstract than I could tolerate, while there's a sense of inauthenticity to ther set up (I think it was Mark Kermode who made the point that the Native American's seem to be wearing moccassins by Gap). I'd say it was his weakest film by some way, though opinion was divided at the time.

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RE: Days Of Heaven - 8/4/2007 8:12:51 PM   
Tech_Noir

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Axel Foley

Malick seems to float of into a world more abstract than I could tolerate, while there's a sense of inauthenticity to ther set up (I think it was Mark Kermode who made the point that the Native American's seem to be wearing moccassins by Gap). I'd say it was his weakest film by some way, though opinion was divided at the time.


The New World is my favourite Malick film, there's just something very haunting about that film that gets me every time I think about it.

As for Kermode, he's obviously missed the film entirely since he was spending so much of his time focusing on the feet of extras.

< Message edited by Tech_Noir -- 8/4/2007 8:14:33 PM >

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RE: Days Of Heaven - 8/4/2007 8:19:34 PM   
amateur ghostbuster

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Tech_Noir

The New World is my favourite Malick film, there's just something very haunting about that film that gets me every time I think about it.


I'm glad somebody else likes this film. I felt it really didn't recieve the recognition it deserved and I know Mallick is partially an aquired taste but I still don't think the critics did it justice.
All his films are so brilliant I wouldn't want to draw a favourite but if I had to I'd say Badlands. Not that its especially better than his other films.

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RE: Days Of Heaven - 11/4/2007 5:37:01 PM   
Axel Foley


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Tech_Noir

As for Kermode, he's obviously missed the film entirely since he was spending so much of his time focusing on the feet of extras.

Kermode’s slating of the film wasn’t solely based on humour. He gave a well thought out argument on the film being overly ponderous. And like me he’s a fan of Malick’s earlier work, which I feel makes his opinion more valid than his slating of, for example, the Star Wars prequels, where I knew he wasn’t going to like them without having to hear/read what he thought.

I also think there’s a bit too much warbling about nature, to the degree that the point feels like it is being nailed to the viewer. His previous movies were a bit more subtle regarding his real interests. Each to their own of course.

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RE: Days Of Heaven - 19/4/2007 11:23:34 PM   
Spider


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Glad people have enjoyed this film. I would have posted earlier but I did a long review which somehow managed to get lost, and I just didn't have the heart to write it all again.

I will say though that on rewatching Days of Heaven I don't think it's Malick's strongest film (which I still think is The Thin Red Line), however I do think it's a beautifully shot and made film which whilst not to everyone's taste, is clearly rooted in Malick's unique style.

My favourite scene is the one with the bonfire of locusts, a perfect example of Malick using striking natural images such as the fire to reflect deeper human emotions. The fact that it is shot in such a stunning way (as is the whole film) only adds to the scene's impact.

How does everyone compare thie film to the rest of Malick's work?

My list would be:
1. The Thin Red Line
2. Badlands
3. Days of Heaven
4. The New World

I really must watch The New World again, in the cinema I found myself trying to like it more than I think I really was, but I do feel that now I've seen more his two older films I may appreciate it more, and I also think that Malick in general is a director who benefits from repeat viewings.

I hope one day we see the rumoured five hour cut of The Thin Red Line! I also await The Tree of Life with excitement.

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Days of Heaven - 30/10/2007 5:33:24 PM   
Master37

 

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This film will not be for everyone. It could in fact be realising this that is the most important thing you need to know before seeing this film. Ask for the film to convince you and it will deliver in droves. From the simple but perfect use of The Aquarium (from The Carnival of the Animals) over sepia toned photographs in the opening credits to the last frame of ‘magic hour’ cinematography you will be astounded. The former high school football star and Harvard-Oxford educated philosopher recluse Terrence Malick maintains the dreamlike atmosphere which pervaded his 1973 debut Badlands. Telling a tale of early 20th Century workers in America, Days of Heaven focuses mainly on three characters. Richard Gere, who got the role after a long search and the likes of Pacino had turned it down, is miles from the rom-com robot he is now generally associated with. He plays the desperate Bill who struggles to keep a job in order to feed his girlfriend and little sister who tag along with him at all times. The beginning sees the trio head off to work the harvest in the fields of middle America and this is where the bulk of the story takes place. The thrust of the story being the love triangle which develops between Bill, his girlfriend and the farm’s owner. The early harvest scenes are masterpieces in themselves. Determined to give the entire film an orange glow, Malick and his cinematographer, Nestor Almendros, would only film at the hours of dusk and dawn when the sun is lowest in the sky. The resulting footage of huge numbers of people working the fields and the insects which surround them has the majesty of a painting. Perhaps only Kubrick’s Barry Lyndon (1975) betters Days of Heaven in this respect. The scenery is as much a character as the humans themselves if not more so. Days of Heaven maintains this epic feel without having to become epic in length with a mere 90 minute running time. Improvisation is rife and a large majority of the scenes f

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