Over the last several years film has become an increasingly affecting medium to me, with it weighing heavily in terms of overall artistic taste and the angle I view the world through. And if all that influence had to be compressed to one mere name Terrance Malick would be it. I am giddy at the thought of the newly announced Criterion edition of ‘The Thin Red Line’ which will see the light of day in late September. Though, like their earlier restored version of ‘Days of Heaven’ (which is perhaps my favorite film ever), other than approving the new high-definition transfer Malick himself is unseen and unheard in the film’s many extra features.
As frustrating as Malick’s silence can be – he abstains from interviews, commentary tracks, or any other forum to shed light on his work – I now find it to be a deep, ingrained commitment to his art. He simply lets his films do all the communicating, allowing the viewer to interpret what they will and how they want. With a deep poetic grace and meditations on what it means to live and, conversely, die, everything is laid bare. Nothing necessary left to be augmented in magazine interviews, editorialized blog posts, making of features, or anything else that would diminish and impinge on his art. Frustrating, yes, but more than a little refreshing as well.