Exploring 'The Tree of Life'

Synopsis: An overview of the making of The Tree of Life (2011).
30 min



It was they who led me to your door.

A man's heart has heard two ways through life.

The way of nature.

And the way of grace.

You have to choose which one you'll follow.

Grace doesn't try to please itself.

It accepts being slighted, forgotten, disliked...

It accepts insults and injuries.

Nature only wants to please itself.

Bless our lord this food...

Get others to please it too.

...Loving and faithful service...

It likes to lord it over them.

...Bless these boys...

To have its own way.

It finds reasons to be unhappy.

When all the world is shining around it.

And love is smiling through all things.

They taught us, that no one

who loves the way of grace,

ever comes to a bad end.

I will be true to you.

Whatever comes...

My son.

I just want to die. To be with him.

He's in God's hands now.

He was in God's hands the whole time.

Wasn't he?

My home.

My God.

I shall fear no evil.

Fear no evil, for you are with me.

What did you gain?

Be not far from me, for trouble is near.

Go on now, we're alright.

We're alright.

Thank you.

Shouldn't have your memories of him, ...

You have to be strong now, and...

I know, the pain will, it will pass in time.

You know, it might seem,

hard, my saying that, but it's true.

I don't want it to.

Life goes on.

People pass along.

Nothing stays the same.

You still got the other two.

The Lord gives and the Lord takes away.

That's the way he is.

He sends flies to wounds...that he should heal.

I never got a chance to tell him how sorry I was.

I even...

...punched himself in the face for no reason.

You sit next to me at the piano

and I criticized where he'd turned the pages.

I might even feel ashamed.

Why shame?

Poor boy. Poor boy.

How did you come to me?

In what shape?

What disguise?

I see the child I was.

I see my brother.



He died when he was 19.

Just check, this one against this.

She wants to get back together.

But, the chapter's closed, the story's been told.

What are you gonna do?


When you're young, it's all about your career.

I just feel like I'm...bumping into walls...

The world's gone to the dogs,

people are greedy and keep getting worse.

I try to get into their hands.

Hey dad, I'm sorry I said what I said, I'm...

Yea, I think about him every day.

I just shouldn't have said what I did, I'm sorry.

What are you thinking?

I know, I know what you did...

And only two of those were turned down by client...

How did I lose you?


Forgot you.

Find me.

How did she bear it?


Was I false to you?



Where were you?

Did you know?

Who are we to you?

Answer me.

We cry to you.

My soul.

My son.

Hear us.

Light up my life.

I search for you.

My home.

My child.

You spoke to me through her.

You spoke with me from the sky.

The trees.

Before I knew I loved you ...

Believed in you.

When did you first touch my heart?

...And manfully to fight under His banner

against sin, the world, and the devil...

We're having Mr. McMander over for dinner.

This is a double bidder right on in.

What's this?

Two alligators.

Two alligators.



Jump. Jump. Jump. Jump.



I know.

No! No!

It's mine!

You found me!

You'll be grown before that tree is tall.

Blue far.


Are you afraid?

Come here.

Come here. Alright, now come back here son,

stay out of there. That's Spencer's yard, okay?

You see this line?

Let's not cross it, you understand?

Do you understand?

Do you see this line? Look it here. Look here.

Okay, now come back here son. Come on back.

Let's stay out of there.

"Now, my dears" said old Mrs. Rabbit one morning,

"You may go into the fields or down the lane"

"Don't go into Mr. Mcgregor's garden"

"Your father had an accident there"

That's where God lives.

Goodnight, we'll see you in 5 years.

Want to eat a grasshopper?

I found it! I found this old bone!

Bless this food to our use.

As to your loving and faithful service.

Make us remindful of those who are in need.


Can you pass the butter, please?

Can you pass the butter please sir.


What did you do today?

We went to school.

After that.

What about the yard?

Did you put the runners in like I asked?


Yes, sir.

Well, it didn't look like it.


Mr. Reese liked Jack's book report.

Nobody's asked sweetheart.

You know this.



Reach me my lighter.

Haven't you forgotten something?

Do you love your father?

Yes, sir.

...and they went off to look for Kaa the Rock Python.

They found him stretched out

on a warm ledge in the afternoon sun.

Admiring his beautiful new coat.

Who do you love most?

I love you all three the same.

Tell us a story from before we can remember.

He went for a ride in a plane once.

It was a graduation present.


Am I any good?


Can it happen to anyone?

Nobody talks about it.

Help me not to sass my dad.

Help me not to get dogs in fights.

Help me be thankful for everything I've got.

Where do you live?

Help me not to tell lies.

Are you watching me?

I want to know what you are.

I want to see what you see.

Come here.

You're going to stand there and

you're going to close this door quietly, 50 times.

Count it out.

You can't just take off the top.

You got to get them by the roots.

Your mother's naive.

It takes fierce will to get ahead in this world.

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Terrence Malick

Terrence Frederick Malick is an American film director, screenwriter and producer. He began his career as part of the New Hollywood film-making wave with the critically acclaimed films Badlands and Days of Heaven, before a lengthy hiatus. more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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