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Review

Harry Marvels At THE NEW WORLD!!!

My God.

I’ve just returned from another world. THE NEW WORLD isn’t a film, it is a portal to time and a place and peoples that just no longer exist. The visual clarity and composition, the faces, costumes and make up, the sounds – both musical and alive… this was more than 24 frames a second… You could swear the air was cleaner, that the scent of pine hung in the air, that innocence still existed.

For the nearly three hours that I sat in that theater – the seats, the walls, my own breathing, the stillness of the air – it all just evaporated. My mind was busy dissecting, storing and absorbing the imagery and the performances. The cumulative effect of the film is like sitting in a lotus position for 3 hours at top of a temple in China. You come away from the experience renewed. It is a transcendent experience.

There’s no irony or cynicism at work. No forced or ham-fisted moments. In fact the only distraction at all in the film is that you recognize Bale, Farrell, Studi and Plummer. Not that they ever really speak or anything. The film is mostly about two cultures observing one another. First from the point of view of two tribes, then from the point of view of a man and a woman.

Have you ever traveled somewhere without a tour guide, off the beaten path… just embedding yourself in an alien culture? Finding a place with no English – and no language you know? Personally – it’s my favorite type of situation. I’ve done in Prague and in Beijing and as a child in that Mayan village that my parents and I stayed at outside Palenque. It’s magical. Communication breaks down to hand signs and body language. I remember in China – finding a restaurant on my computer that I wanted to try – but I couldn’t begin to tell a Chinese cabbie where I wanted to go – so I copied all the Chinese characters off the site – and then took a copy of my hotel stationary – so that I could find my way back… but, once there – I was just flying blind. No conception of what I was ordering. That’s a modern level of culture shock… this. This is something entirely different.

We begin the film in “the new world” – the title, to me refers to three levels of world discovery in this film. First there’s the obvious – NEW WORLD – that is the AMERICA that John Smith and the others are landing upon. Second – there’s the change that these settlers represent and how everything that was the New World would be changing into yet another New World. And Third – there’s Pocahontas and Opechancanough’s journey to England – a truly new world from their perspective.

Let’s deal with them in order.

THE NEW WORLD – A Pristine America. This is the greatest Indian portrayal that I have ever seen in my 34 years of watching Indians in cinema. There’s an amazing physicality and artistry here that I’ve only ever seen captured in “savage” or “primal man” in the paintings of Frank Frazetta. It’s… well it is what it is. It is. It is simply something to watch and see and be amazed with. Indians in cinema are traditionally shown in one of two extremes. Psychotic killers of white women. And the still, motionless noble wooden Indian with sage advice. Here, Malick’s Indians are simply… Alive. Expressive. One with nature. Violent when need be, but that is not at all the state they wish to be in. The scenes of John Smith in their “city” is blissful. The Indian games – essentially the same ones I played in OA. The high weeds game that Pocahontas and her brother play is actually one of the most beautiful things I’ve seen. And quite magical.

THE NEW WORLD – America With Settlers Settling. If you know your history and you’ve ever wondered about those earliest days of colonial desperation and survival – this is haunting. That very first wave were made up, not so much of settlers and agriculturally minded folks – but of criminal / indentured soldiers that didn’t have a clue about how to survive in the wilds. They didn’t have a good sense of hunting, planting… just basic survival. The lust for gold keeping them from doing something simple like… DIG A WELL. Looking at this part of the film is just brutal. The children – a tortured existence – very much the scavenger rats of humanity. Amazing.

THE NEW WORLD – Europe as seen through Native American Eyes. Here you have a twofold layer of discovery. From Pocahontas’ perspective – England represents a wonderland of sights and accomplishments and culture. It’s something she adapts to and takes to, like a fish to water. However, Wes Studi’s Opechancanough – who is sent with her to “kill as many white faces as possible” and report back to his chief… well, the look on his face as he sees what is coming. There’s a window in the chief’s hut that was essentially their great spirit style window made up of stretched dried animal skins – made to look a bit like a haunted eye. In this “new world” Opechancanough stands before one of the great stained glass chapel windows – and the colored light on his face shows awe & horror – it is only at this moment that he understands the fate of his people and the “power” of their God. In many ways – this is the single most powerful image and performance I’ve seen on film this year. Absolutely brilliant.

Calling Malick’s films cinematic poetry is almost trite by now. It certainly is a tired expression. This is most definitely a narrative tale about the transformation of Pocahontas from a young Indian princess into a modern, at the time, lady and her relationships with John Smith and John Rolfe. It is certainly not a traditional narrative as most of us have come to know them. The film has a dreamlike sensation to it, much like RUSSIAN ARK – a film I loved some years ago.

Malick understands the power of silence. So many films – with their 8 channels or more of sound to fill, fill them. Making overpowering concussive assaults on one’s senses. Here – Malick dials back the noise. He gives you chirps and tweets and the moaning of trees in the wind, the rustling of leaves and the natural roar of a growing storm. Have you ever heard a shotgun go off in the woods – far away. It’s almost a poof of sound followed by nature’s reaction. He gets that.

James Horner turns in his best score in ages. It is his first score that doesn’t sound like his score. It is quite abstract and stirring. There’s moments during montages of nature where it builds to impossible levels before the ecstasy of calm. Really can’t say enough about it. A great score.

In fact – across the board – the film is just exquisite. I recommend this film to anyone that has sat still in the wild for a few hours and not missed technology or the hum of civilization. This is a film for those of us that want to take a vacation from the here and now and contemplate all that modern man has sacrificed for the wonders of a PSP. This is a celebration of the beginnings of this country and the power of what America once meant to those who first came here from Europe, to those that were already here – and what it means to us today.

This is a brilliant film. Absolutely stunning.

Readers Talkback
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  • Dec. 28, 2005, 11:46 p.m. CST

    FIRST to the New World!

    by DonliQ

  • Dec. 28, 2005, 11:49 p.m. CST

    This, truly, was not expected.

    by dr_dreadlocks

    Also, Robert Rodriguez's next ten films are absolutely awesome. Don't forget that.

  • The trailer looked interesting, but the reviews make it look much more interesting and complex than the previews have. Never doubt Malick.... never!

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 12:07 a.m. CST

    I'll see it whenever it gets released

    by movieman742

    It was suppose to come out in November and then was pushed back. It looks like a good movie. From what I've read and seen I might be right. Hopefully it is.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 12:10 a.m. CST

    dude, Harry...

    by keyserSOZE

    have you PLAYED a PSP? it was WELL worth the sacrifice! but seriously folks...wasn't really planning on giving this too much of a look, as i found thin red line to be quite overrated and therefore have a bit of a negative view of malick...however, after this my interest is definitely piqued.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 12:13 a.m. CST

    Harry, don't forget the oft parodied stoic Indian shedding a

    by Terry_1978

    So you're saying the Disney version wasn't accurate in their portrayal? Speaking of which, Bale is in this, and also voiced Thomas in the Disney version....wrap your brain around that one.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 12:46 a.m. CST

    Order of the Arrow Rules!

    by conniebrean

    Take that other Boy Scout subgroups.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 12:48 a.m. CST

    So how will this get twisted into a political debate?

    by Alonzo Mosely

    My bet is on a long rant that includes the words 'smallpox blanket'... Which would make a good punk band name...

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 12:52 a.m. CST

    "Have you ever traveled somewhere, off the beaten path

    by Monkeybrains

    And "Russian Ark" was just pretentious nonsense. If that's what it's comparatable to, Thanks for saving me $10 Harry, I appreciate it

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 1:09 a.m. CST

    Good Review

    by uberman

    Really a insightful review. I will be seeing this and Munich-of course Munich opens here this week-not sure when this opens but I will be there-Never saw a film this guy has done I did not like.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 1:09 a.m. CST

    HEy????

    by Rcamacho2278

    What happened to king Kong??

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 1:31 a.m. CST

    Were the natives in awe at the power of a PSP? How did Malick co

    by IAmJack'sUserID

    Kidding. I can't wait to see this!

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 1:38 a.m. CST

    Interesting review harry...

    by LeckoManiac

    however Comingsoon.net listed this as number 3 on their list of the 20 worst movies of the year...weird to see such a drastic difference...I mean they said this was worse than D.E.B.S.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 1:38 a.m. CST

    Been waiting for this movie for a long time.

    by Veraxus

    It looks fantastic and I can't wait to see it.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 1:48 a.m. CST

    what's that? Nine raves in a row?

    by HypeEndsHere

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 1:57 a.m. CST

    Comingsoon.net also said MATCH POINT was one of the worst of the

    by zikade zarathos

    ...they're idiots. Malick is either a You get it/You don't kinda guy. You either think he's a pure genius (like me) or he bores you to tears. Which makes reviews of his work especially pointless, because nothing is going to convince someone to either like his stuff/hate his stuff. If you didn't like THIN RED LINE, you'll dislike this even more. I loved it, though.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 2:03 a.m. CST

    SPOTTED HORSE CANNOT BE KILLED BY A BULLET

    by Darth Philbin

    best injun ever.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 2:15 a.m. CST

    comingsoon.net

    by LeckoManiac

    Yeah I was puzzled by the presence of match point as well as High Tension...I know a lot of folks did not like the latter, but it definitly did not deserve its place amongst the top 20 worst of the year...I just found the juxtaposition of the two reviews of the New World intriguing

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 2:23 a.m. CST

    december dvd picks...

    by DocMcCoy

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 2:52 a.m. CST

    Version I Saw

    by HEADGEEK

    The Longer Version - as of yet, they haven't screened the shorter version - as NEW LINE has yet to make the determination as to which version will be sent out - if there is to be a different version.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 3:04 a.m. CST

    Actually Thin Red Line was one of those movies that sort of grew

    by Thirteen 13

    I remember after seeing it in the theater I walked out and thought "Well that certainly didn't suck" but yet I wasn't really blown away either. Then I sat down and rented it and gave it another day in court and the movie started to really grow on me, until I finally bought it and became a fan. Although even though after all that I really could still have done without the parts that featured John Travolta or George Clooney. Those served no purpose except for big star name dropping only, and it gave John and George a chance to say they were in an artsy indie movie to hone their craft. I think those two being in the movie are Thin Red Lines only flaws, even though the both of them were in it for all of 3 minutes combined.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 3:17 a.m. CST

    Rcamacho2278 - "What happened to king Kong??"

    by Thirteen 13

    Its still in first place at the box office and 9 places ahead of Harry's beloved "Munich". If your up for having a theater auditorium all to yourself then Munich is the movie to go see, as long as you don't mind watching historical fiction and revisionism.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 3:20 a.m. CST

    9 in a row

    by HEADGEEK

    True - but if you notice - I haven't written up my DECEMBER DVD report yet - which is indicative of the fact that my "other life" is taking quite a toll on my writing time. SO - I'm writing about the films that motivate me to write. Films like THE PRODUCERS, YOURS MINE AND OURS,RUMOR HAS IT, CHEAPER BY THE DOZEN 2, etc - just are so goddamn mediocre that I don't waste my time writing about them - and I'd hope that you'd have the good sense to know what steaming piles of festering dung they are. Having said that - I've also loved WOLF CREEK - but just haven't had the time to write about it. Also loved GRIZZLY MAN, TOM YUM GOONG, BROOKLYN LOBSTER, TELL THEM WHO YOU ARE and a ton of other films I've seen recently that I haven't had the time to write about.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 5:26 a.m. CST

    Thirteen

    by PurityOfEssence

    No offense but what film about a historical subject isn't fictitous or revisionistic? Do you not agree with the tone it sets - do you feel it is overly sympathetic toward the members of Black September? Or the maybe to sympathetic with regard to the Mossad? I am somewhat interested in getting as many different oppinions on this film as possible - wrong board though...

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 6:14 a.m. CST

    I can't help but think that this is going to tank

    by Trazadone

    not because it's a bad film but because, being a big nerd, the trailers do nothing for me and the title is mundane. My prediction is $8 million opening weekend and a quick drop off after that.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 6:45 a.m. CST

    Black Robe

    by BDT

    About a Jesuit being sent by the Church to a remote area of Quebec to help a fellow priest. One of the most honest portrayal of indigenous and Eurpoean cultures coming together that I've ever scene and a wonderful movie (I saw it 3 times in the theater). I'd love to see New World. The trailers made it look like a live action of the Disney Pocohantas, so I wasn't thrilled, but now I really want to see it. I think, historically, Pocohantas' son went back and wiped out the Powhatan tribe and she never really adapted very well to life in England...don't know if that has ever been shown in a movie.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 6:58 a.m. CST

    Ok, I have to ask: How is there an AICN quote on Hostel?

    by chrth

    I haven't seen a full review from one of the principals of this site on Hostel yet, so what are they quoting? A quickie comment from the BNAT scene? One of the plant reviews we saw earlier?

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 7:05 a.m. CST

    The Brave New World - A place where the Men are Men and the Shee

    by Rhett Butler

    Best review in a dog's age, Harry old stick.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 7:23 a.m. CST

    Well "The New World" seems to be a film

    by CurryIce

    which divides the critics. I hope i'll love it as i loved TheThinRedLine which i consider as one of the best war movies ever made. Oh and Harry: I hope you are not that busy and still have the time to write a review of Sympathy for Lady Vengeance (& V For Vendetta). Otherwise i'll be shocked...

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 7:27 a.m. CST

    Terrence Malick, THE NEW WORLD and those empty theaters showing

    by Dickie Greenleaf

    First of all, let's give Thirteen13 a little perspective on why KONG is at #1 this past weekend. MUNICH is as yet only on limited release (a fact I think most people are aware of) - it is currently being shown on 532 screens compared with KONG's 3,576. So the disparity between their positions on the box office chart is understandable. You should note, however, that as regards the two films' per screen average, MUNICH is registering a whopping $7,805 against KONG's $5,945, which is as good an indicator as any of the interest the Spielberg film is generating, and can be seen as a precursor to how big the movie could potentially be when it goes wide next month. But enough of all that - I've certainly got no problem with KONG occupying the top spot as I think its a terrific picture (I'll be heading out to see it for the second time just later this very day) and fully deserving of its success. But just as one can applaud the release of a massive blockbuster entertainment of genuine vision, heart and mind-blowing technique, lets also give it up for the fact that work as complicated and provocative as MUNICH (and THE NEW WORLD with any luck, though it doesn't carry the brand name of Spielberg) is being welcomed to the fold by audiences. I specifically bring up the factor audiences are playing as I've come to believe the role of ticket-buyers is becoming increasingly important. I've commented here before how the public at large is complicit in the quality (or lack thereof) witnessed in theaters these days, and whilst this has probably always been true, the expense of producing films now puts more emphasis than ever on the old risk versus reward dilemma. Its not much of a stretch to predict that CHEAPER BY THE DOZEN 2 and FUN WITH DICK AND JANE are going to out-gross THE NEW WORLD by some distance, so I would basically just like to urge as many people as possible to go out and see THE NEW WORLD (and MUNICH, SYRIANA, BROKEBACK, GOOD NIGHT... etc. for that matter). Don't wait for DVD. Don't wait for TV. This is where these films need support. The theatrical exhibition is still the most important even if DVD is now more lucrative. Has anyone else watched the trailer for Soderbergh's BUBBLE this week? Because that film heralds what may be a turning point in its simultaneous release platform in theaters, on DVD and on HDNet. A lot of people will be curious as to how that goes - not because a small independent with non-actors poses any threat whatsoever to any of the releases discussed here, but how such a practice may yet come to be moulded by the industry in the future. I've gotta say, I'm a huge fan of Soderbergh, but this whole thing makes me very nervous. Theaters are, and must always be, the true home of cinema, no matter where the digital revolution takes us. And if a Terrence Malick film is not the perfect advert for the infinite capacity of the 'big screen experience', I don't know what is. The thing with Malick that marks his work out from practically every other filmmaker is the films are different for everyone. No matter what the plot, whether it be lovers on the run amidst a killing spree or soldiers fighting in WWII, everyone experiences Malick films in their own way. He fills his films with so much, one can find their gaze pulled in different directions whilst looking at the very same frames. The films are a true testament to how cinema can be about so much more than mere plot. For Malick, story is simply a means to a far greater end. A way in which to capture and create mood, feeling, understanding. Harry's quite correct to point out that it's practically redundant to describe Malick as a tone poet. In addition to the ubiquity of such a comment, it fails to grasp the extent to which Malick uses every facet of the medium to captivate. THE THIN RED LINE is my favorite film. I know a lot of people love it. I know that equally, a lot of poeple loathe it. It's pretentious and elitist to dismiss those who don't care for it by saying "you just don't get it". As sophisticated as they may be, Malick films aren't necessarily about intellectualizing - they're about feeling. A Malick film is, on the on hand, about concentration - and if that sounds like too much hard work, then what do you think art is worth? You have to open up completely to them, a feat considerably easier to achieve in a darkened auditorium before a huge screen than slouched in your living room in front of the TV. But they're also about instinct. Malick is a true artist. Is there a risk that true art will be stifled, misunderstood or devalued by the vast choice of accessibility? Malick is a filmmaker in the purest sense, and he is one of the few remaining that genuinely shoots for the big screen. To view these films any other way could be seen to be judging them on a stage for which they were never intended. So I urge everybody to go and see THE NEW WORLD. There will be many differing reactions, as should be the case with a multi-layered piece of work. But no matter what your ultimate opinion may be, I think I can guarantee that nobody will believe their time has been wasted. Which is more than can be said for a lot of what is cluttering up theaters masquerading as films. In many ways, we are fortunate to have such a broad and diverse range of directors as Malick, Spielberg, Jackson and Soderbergh currently working. And Cronenberg, Meirelles, Lee, Mann, Fincher, Payne and others too. They all deserve our support and interest. 20-30 years ago, that interest was there on a much wider scale but has gradually diminished during the proliferation of other media. I guess you can't stand in the way of progress, but these are the guys making 'proper films' (an odd term I know, and one I find to have been coined fairly recently to be used in relation to anything where the commendable features are basic performance, writing or direction) and maybe the best future for cinema means pausing and looking back.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 7:31 a.m. CST

    FINALLY A Film To Be Excited About This Season!

    by ZombieSolutions

    Mallick is amazing and I can't wait to see this.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 7:41 a.m. CST

    "theatrical exhibition is still the most important"

    by chrth

    Bullshit. I won't be happy until every movie theatre is shut down. DVD is all you need.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 7:53 a.m. CST

    OK, I will TRY to watch this film.

    by FluffyUnbound

    You've talked me into it with your description of the third act. But if THE NEW WORLD is unbearably maudlin poseur crap trying to pass itself off as "filmed poetry", the way that THIN RED LINE was, I am going to be very displeased. On the bright side, if it actually IS as unwatchable as TRL, I'll at least have the satisfaction of getting up and walking out. Walking out of TRL, while adolescent philosophers in the audience sniffed at my "philistinism", was in retrospect almost as satisfying a film experience as seeing a GOOD movie would have been. I guess I can try to duplicate that again if this sucks.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 8:16 a.m. CST

    I predict it'll make 100 million dollars at the box office

    by BendersShinyAss

    And then it'll make another 100 million dollars on dvd. And then I predict it'll cost the producers 100 million dollars to make the sequel. Then I think it'll take a dive down to 50 million dollars, or a jump up to 300 million dollars - depending on if this film makes good BO. But as I've predicted, it'll make 100 million dollars. If it's bad, even though it makes it's 100 million dollars, then the sequel might only make another 100 million dollars. Give or take 10 million dollars. There's always the chance of an offshoot film. Or a CG animated series with real live and woahful actors. That should will cost 100 million dollars for it's first season. The toys will undoubtably bring in another 50 million dollars. Write this down because I really think I'm right and I'll never remember so I'll be sure to check back with you guys when and if the sequel comes. I love talking BO figures. It really does just make my day seem so much more livelier. It also makes me feel as if I've contributed something to both this talkback, and my own mental integrity. And the best part of all, I look just as good as anyone else here predicting film cashflow - and I didn't even have to think to do it!

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 8:16 a.m. CST

    Twenty Years Ago Today on "The Facts of Life..."

    by Borgnine JR

    ...Blair frets about which boy to take to the Spring Formal. Jo frets about which wrench to use on her lugnut. Mrs. Garrett frets over her famous Peach Crumble Cobbler. And Natalie, so very desperate for human contact, poses as "Pierre" the massuer, and offers to give Tootie a "French" massage.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 8:23 a.m. CST

    A PSP??

    by oh_riginal

    The hell with PSP's. I, as a Native American, would rather never have seen a PSP in my life, if it meant reversing the fact that the Native American population is less than 1% of the total World Population now... if that is not considered to be the equivalent of the term "Endangered Species" as applied to animals, I don't know what is. My two cents are spent.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 8:27 a.m. CST

    Oh, and I have to agree with Harry for the most part...

    by oh_riginal

    Native American stereotypes in film sicken me. For once, I'd love to see a modern-time movie that has a Native American cast, without a single drunk, depressed, or angry character. Though I heard that that Christmas movie with Graham Greene is something along those lines, but its not playing where I live, so I don't know.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 8:44 a.m. CST

    Are you a REAL Native American?

    by BendersShinyAss

    Or like the American bloke who's just moved in down the road from me, whom claims to have native american in him? Even though he's clearly whiter than Jesus. He's loud too. Tells me people beat him up cause he's American. I tell him that's it's because he's so loud and obnoxious. But that's most American's, sorry. Anyway. He doesn't like Canada becuase they just sit around being Canadian and they don't believe in starting wars. Is this guy just being funny, or is this the the actual American species which saturates the market? I did meet a native american community. They were on tour. Now those guys know how to sit around and share a piece pipe!

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 8:56 a.m. CST

    I've seen Native Americans before!

    by Shigeru

    There's that group that plays the flute-pipe and keyboards and stuff in the streets of Boston....anybody with me?? I heard them play the Kill Bill theme once.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 9:02 a.m. CST

    Shigeru, there you are, I was just talking about you

    by BendersShinyAss

    joke

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 9:04 a.m. CST

    joke

    by Shigeru

    see we all can make jokes.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 9:07 a.m. CST

    Bender, I didn't realize you were Canadian. I have a questi

    by FluffyUnbound

    Occasionally I'll spend some time in Burlington, VT and end up watching Canadian TV and listening to Canadian radio. My impression from doing so is that Canada's tiny population, combined with an insistence on the media giving an outlet to a certain % of local or domestic content, means that it's very easy to become a celebrity in Canada. Is that your impression too? It seems like to be a Quebec recording star you only need about as much talent as the average cable access show person in the US has. And seriously, the production values on your domestic content are lower than Mexico's. And that seems strange to me, because so much "American" TV is actually filmed in Toronto or Vancouver. Why are the production values so high for that stuff, and so low for your own true-blue Canadian stuff? Have you ever considered becoming a "Canadian culture producer"? It seems like a nice little racket. You could be a "Canadian comic". Dress up like the real Bender and tell jokes about Americans. Maybe you could get a segment between periods on HNIC, right after Grapes. Come on, aren't there only, like, 4 people competing with you to get on TV in that slot? You could do it.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 9:09 a.m. CST

    Is this better than Mann's "Last of the Mohicans"?

    by Darth Busey

    Because I love that f-ing movie.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 9:16 a.m. CST

    Poke-a-hot-ass

    by Osmosis Jones

    Disney's version was sexier. And The Thin Red Line was virtually unwatchable. A leaden, filmed coffee table art book. No plot, just a lot of random shots of wildlife and portentious, nonsensical voiceovers. Back in the 1950's, films like that were directed by Ed Wood or Coleman Francis ("Flag on the moon. How did it get there?").

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 9:24 a.m. CST

    I Once Dated A Canadian Girl

    by ZombieSolutions

    she was kinda cute, but naive. the thing that shocked me the most was how bland she was! how bland Canada is in general. Americans are a bunch of loud, arrogant, ignorant, violent obnoxious jerks but they're funny that way. sure, the current regime has turned the US into a brutal facist empire, but, you know, somebody has to be the bad guy, right? anyways, as pleasent as Canada is, as nice as it's people are, yer also INCREDIBLY BORING; like wallpaper. i swear to god if we weren't reminded that Canada existed through various comedy bits i think the entire country would just disappear... out of sight, out of mind, right? still, you guys rule what with the National Healthcare, and legalized weed. Go Canada! all you need is a little more showmanship / pizazz and your well on your way to having a distinct and interesting national personality...

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 9:51 a.m. CST

    Fluffybunnyunbound, How could you so purposefully forget 'De

    by BendersShinyAss

    That show has been around forever. It's like the canadian Star Trek. Only heaps better because it hasn't died completly. a. It's no secret Americans put on a good show. American TV and Cinema has a pretty cool knack for showing just how real an asteroid hitting the earth can look. They also show just how important a show can look by the sheer height of it's roof. But watch out America, for as New Zealand has shown, as long as there is Green screen, you'll have to up the anti somehow. Kong doesn't hold up very well to a second screening btw. But to answer the question of why Canadian programing doesn't hold up even though some top quality American shit is filmed in Canada. Well. It's the same reason why Australian Cinema doesn't hold up, But get Australians to make American produced shit, Australians are up there with the best of whats in Hollywood. It's all Money. and Americans print it up and toss it around without any worth. But in the real world, that's the shit that gets you into serious federal financial strife. But I really wouldn't know anything about Number. I do have a question for you Fluffy.... what the hell made you think I was Canadian. I don't like those fucker, they just sit there being Canadian and not starting wars or anything. No I'm Australian, where we like our Wars to be written on internet talkback. the worlds been operating with us folk just sitting back on our recliners with a tit in one hand and a Dingo in the other. No one drinks Fosters though - That's American Propaganda. As I was saying, the world could do with a good dose of australian "Oi, pull ya head in. Bloody mongrels" And you'd listen to. Because we don't take shit. Unless they bring chocholate and snoochy bootchys. Kevin Smith. Come back and visit us soon!

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 10:02 a.m. CST

    Malick

    by angel_svn

    The Thin Red Line is one of the greatest anti-war movies ever made (although it could be seen as simplistic, kind of like Harry) because how it shows war affecting nature ... and this from a guy who supports the war in Iraq. Old World America was no less innocent of a place because it had more or less technology or industrialization. They murdered, stole, raped, injured, and made war just like any other people group will do given time and circumstance. But what technology and industry will do is destroy a reverence for nature and God, something Malick has in droves (well, at least nature). I look forward to seeing Malick's take on the New World vs. the Old World. As someone who sucks on the nipple of modern life like a dependant crack addict, I do dream of living in a place where God's nature isn't molested. I hope I get a sense of that in the New World, and I know that Malick is about the only director who can give it good.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 10:04 a.m. CST

    I went up to Toronto once...

    by Shigeru

    And let me tell ya something weird: The Canadian Border Gaurds were FOXY ladies. Like smokin hot babes. And when we got to Toronto, I saw like 4 policewomen who were stone cold foxes too!! It was downright eerie.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 10:05 a.m. CST

    Here's to wishing...

    by Karl Childers

    Harry's DVD picks to stop being so fucking late all the time these days.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 10:17 a.m. CST

    Brilliant, huh?

    by MattCG

    I'd settle for boring, wildly uneven, admittedly very pretty, but the story falls into the Been-There-Done-That-Who-Gives-A-Shit? category. Hollywood needs to put a stop to these bloated, unweildly fucking vanity-pieces. Everyone's getting away with them. And, yes, Harry, "Kong" would've been a vastly better flick if Jackson had excised about an hour from the film. This movie could've lost about an hour and a half and still told the exact same story and my ass wouldn't be hurting. All in all, the most boring, needless waste of film I've seen since "Seven Years in Tibet". Holy shit.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 10:17 a.m. CST

    Harry likes a new movie, again? What are the chances of that?

    by Orionsangels

    Ok how much did they pay ya this time big guy? I'm just keeding! Cool review

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 10:44 a.m. CST

    Actually, I know why Harry loves every film he reviews

    by BendersShinyAss

    Because he gets in big trouble when he reviews films he doesn't like. The man has destroyed films and careers. Well, he didn't. I mean you can't blame Harry for Batman & Robin. Or even Rollerball. Those are just pieces of shit. Actually, I've never seen rollerball because Harry gave it such a bad review. Both on line and on TV. I mean, Wow. i'm never seeing that film!

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 10:57 a.m. CST

    I love Malick, but much of The Thin Red Line was stolen....

    by Doom II

    ...from the 1967 movie, Beach Red. Shot-for-shot Malick "borrowed" many scenes and ideas from Beach Red (a movie about Marines invading a South Pacific island held by Japanese soldiers). Even Saving Private Ryan "borrowed" sights and sounds from the same film. I do look forward to New World. Hopefully I don't run across an older movie that IT steals from> rent Beach Red and do a follow up to my post. Please. I want to read what another reader thinks of the AMAZING similarities.

  • Malick is a prized rarity so I consider any of his films a 'must see'. Not just for the cinematic poetry but the philosopher's heart. I am curious to find out how he ultimately handled the native Americans. There is a running problem in movies now, for I don't know how long. The non-white native is ALWAYS more noble in their core being than the non-indigenous race, but this is just another form of racism in that it's still only a caricature of the native race being depicted, not a truly human picture of them. So I'm curious how Malick ends up doing in this realm. For example, is it once again something like, the natives have the "flaw" of sometimes resort to X (some sort of unethical action) against their better nature, while for the settlers they engage in Y (some other sort of unethical action) which is just being human, all too human? This kind of distinction in race depictions is not that nuanced, it should be clear by not only what is portrayed but by what isn't portrayed. Just curious.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 11:08 a.m. CST

    Thirteen 13...Not that it matters, but Munich didn't break t

    by Doom II

    When Munich opens nationwide, it will be in the top 3 instantly. Watch. Excellent film by the way, but I've said that in about 3 talkbacks already. Fact or fiction, a great film is a great film.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 11:45 a.m. CST

    Canadian chicks are hot

    by drjohnnyfever

    Seriously. Ever girl I've ever met who's from Canada has been fucking gorgeous. What are they putting in the water there?

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 12:11 p.m. CST

    Not all of them

    by BendersShinyAss

    Although the one I remember most had yellow eyes. As for what they put in the water. I do believe it's all pure and glacial. You Americans need to stop putting stuff in your water. It makes you hungry and fat and stupid and suseptible to monkeys telling you you need to give up your rights for the safety of the world.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 12:22 p.m. CST

    munich in wide release

    by ErrantNight

    it's numbers per screen aren't that impressive for a film in limited release. top 3, sure. huge box office hit? nope. not a chance. too long, too dark.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 1:20 p.m. CST

    Except for buffaloe jerky, what have Native Americans ever done

    by Borgnine JR

    A Big Fat ZIP!!! That's what!! Even Tonto was a Pussy.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 1:59 p.m. CST

    Jesus Harry!

    by Slappy san

    Review the movie. Blow the filmmakers on your own time.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 2 p.m. CST

    Harry in China...

    by jrbarker

    I would have liked to have witnessed the scene in that restraunt in China that Harry went to. Those Chinese people probably had never seen somebody like Harry before. They must have thought this giant orange mountain of a man-thing had come from beyond the seas to devour them.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 2:56 p.m. CST

    Hey Oh_riginal, I guess those 180 million aztecs in mexico city

    by ChileanSeaBass

    You're about as native american as the italian guy who played sitting bull in Bonanaza...real native american, Ie. mexicans, bolivians, peruvians, and even the occasional chilean, dont sit around crying about the loss of our lands..we own them you dubass...go kill a buffalo in your casino you poser!

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 3:20 p.m. CST

    There's 180 million people in mexico city?

    by Shigeru

    when did that happen?

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 3:23 p.m. CST

    "somebody has to be the bad guy"

    by LeFlambeur

    Hmmm, where have I heard that before?

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 5:02 p.m. CST

    Joesnuff...I will say it again...

    by BDT

    IF anyone wants to see great portrayal of indiginous people of North America meeting with European culture (although a tad earlier than the Jamestown community was formed), see the movie Black Robe. The different tribes and different areas and the Jesuits are all portrayed as human beings with flaws, brutality, superstitions and nobility. It is primarily a harsh look at nature, human nature and the nature of faith and the story merely unfolds. I know I will see The New World, but I will be probably be making comparisons to Black Robe (1991).

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 5:53 p.m. CST

    BendersShinyAss

    by oh_riginal

    Yes, I am a real native american, not the fake "Cherokees" that EVERYONE and their dog claims to be.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 5:55 p.m. CST

    ChileanSeaBass

    by oh_riginal

    180 million? As if they were all Natives, ROFL! Yes, I am a real native, but since I am parts of tribes you probably never heard of, you would say something like "If I never heard of that tribe, you are lying!" like most people do.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 6:18 p.m. CST

    Good Review

    by Evil Chicken

    Thanks Harry; this is now on my list of must sees in 2006.

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 7:07 p.m. CST

    That's it...

    by NubtheSquirrel

    I am seeing it this Sunday! I want to wait until then to say that The New World was the first great movie I have seen in 2006. Either that or Munich. Either way, can't lose!

  • Dec. 29, 2005, 8:09 p.m. CST

    I am a real native american, fight for the rights of every man

    by drjohnnyfever

  • Dec. 30, 2005, 4:12 a.m. CST

    New World is Best Movie of 2005 and definitely in the Top 100 of

    by heywood jablomie

    I thought MATCH POINT was the masterpiece of '05...till I saw this. Like eating three tabs of Ecstasy at once.

  • Dec. 30, 2005, 10:47 a.m. CST

    AEON FLUX was a genre film, and this is a genre site.

    by FluffyUnbound

    That seems like a reasonable enough explanation to me. If there's ever another Star Trek film, no matter how mediocre it is, I would expect every one of this site's reviewers to post a review. NEMESIS was about on par with JOHNSON FAMILY VACATION in terms of film quality, but I would expect Harry to review the former, and not the latter. Genre films, tentpole films, and event films should be reviewed. On filler crap no one should mind if Harry passes.

  • Dec. 30, 2005, 11:36 a.m. CST

    Who says it's a "genre site," dumbass?

    by heywood jablomie

    Harry writes about what he loves, regardless of whether it's "genre" or "filler" (!!) -- like, you know, insubstantial pap such as a Terrence Malick masterpiece.

  • Dec. 30, 2005, 1:13 p.m. CST

    shigeru, those guys are Brazilian, I'm pretty sure...

    by Uncooked_Meat

    ... though Brazil being in South America, you could make the case that they are, in fact, Native American. God, you posted so long ago, there's no way you're reading this. I'm just so desperate for attention. Grade me, GRADE ME! I'm good good good and OH SO SMART!

  • Dec. 30, 2005, 1:59 p.m. CST

    Jablomie, why don't you Ja Blow me?

    by FluffyUnbound

    Look at the background wallpaper of the site. Look at the movies it covers in depth. Look at the site's history. Anime, sci-fi, "man in suit", martial arts - if you don't see the pattern to this site you require immediate involuntary sterilization.

  • Dec. 31, 2005, 1:10 a.m. CST

    Maybe because he didn't like it

    by BendersShinyAss

    Harry never reviews films he doesn't like. Not any more. I wish he would. I'd love to hear what he really thought of Kong. We all know he agrees with everything that's been panned on it.

  • Jan. 3, 2006, 10:16 a.m. CST

    What?!? The movie didn't have an annoying kid doing gymnatic

    by Doc_Strange

    Damn, Spielberg is losing his touch.

  • Jan. 4, 2006, 12:40 p.m. CST

    Does Pochahantas Visit Pleasure Town?

    by Deandome

    "In fact the only distraction at all in the film is that you recognize Bale, Farrell, Studi and Plummer."....BY THE BEARD OF ZEUS, THOSE BUCKSKINS ARE AMAZING!!

  • Jan. 6, 2006, 1:55 p.m. CST

    John Smith never tapped that ass...I tells ya!

    by Arithma

    John Smith was famous for bragging in his own journals about how many ladies he'd slept with, yet there is no account of romancing Pocahantas (real name: Mataoka). Besides the fact she was about 10 years old when they met, why would a guy who banged anything that moved omit such an exotic catch? Therefore, for still extending the Pocahontas-John Smith Romance Myth, this movie still hinges on one of the oldest Native American stereotypes. Hollywood strikes again!

  • Jan. 7, 2006, 9:10 a.m. CST

    Nice review...but still not enough to get me interested in this.

    by minderbinder

    Another movie about Pocahontas? Why am I supposed to care. And Thirteen13, that was a stunning show of head-up-ass. Nicely done.

  • Jan. 21, 2006, 4:07 a.m. CST

    Boring as Hell!

    by droids22

    This movie is way way too long! I think it might have worked at 60 minutes and in a few select independent theatres. Trying to a stretch a poetic narrative filled with documentary type imagery over 2 1/2 hours is painful to watch! You'll definitely be squirming in your seat. I actually found it more entertaining to watch other people trying to watch this movie. The look of being pissed off and bored is priceless! :o) People you think are just getting up to go to the bathroom but never come back. Sit thru this at your own risk!

  • Jan. 22, 2006, 1:01 a.m. CST

    Great movie!

    by Z0D

    I watched it today and it was good. But after reading Harry's review of it I agree with him wholeheartedly. It makes me wonder if I missed some things or didn't quite catch Harry's key points from the movie. I'm definately going to get Malik's director's cut to analyze and relax with the movie some more. For some reason we got the short version of the film, and it seemed like a ton of stuff was edited out. In fact the editing was choppy in spots, with audio dropping out to lower levels twice. This film is a fantastic take on the initial Jamestown colony. It seemed Pocahontas was the main storyteller and main focus of the movie. Along with Smith and Rolfe I thought all of the characters showed more character than any character in any movie I've seen recently. The weight of emotion hung on the faces of every character in the film, from Pocahontas' father to the scavenger kids in the beginning of the 'fort' to the new colonists arriving every day. Wow, colony life must have been insanely rough back then. Besides the characters, the environment was astounding. I've never experienced NATURE in all of her glory on film. Never. The unpolluted countryside that had animals chirping, bugs making bug sounds, frogs ribbiting, stream water flowing over rocks, trees waving in the summer wind, thunderstorms raging close by over the sea, all of it was beautiful. I sometimes yearn for more peaceful and simpler times where I am one with nature and mother earth. No technology, no large concrete cities with sprawling concrete roads, just a quiet plain with grass and wild oat waving in the wind of a coming thunderstorm. Can I get some peace and quiet now? ___KNEEL___

  • Feb. 11, 2006, 11:41 p.m. CST

    A work of Art

    by moleperson78

    theres nothing more to say-why say anything

  • Feb. 12, 2006, 8:45 a.m. CST

    the Pochahontas chick..

    by nolan bautista

    ..in this moview..wasn't she discovered by Ed Powers on his Dirty Debutants series?..she kinda looks familiar..

  • Feb. 12, 2006, 3:56 p.m. CST

    Malick is a fookin genius

    by maximusdecimus

    Saw it twice and only the second time did i fully get it. They pulled it at my local cinemas to make way for shit like Big Mommas House.....fucking dipshits!

  • Feb. 27, 2006, 3:22 a.m. CST

    Theater

    by PumpyMcAss

    I really wish that this movie was available in theaters right now. It has already left my town and I can't say I'm too excited to see it again on DVD. It truly was a movie theater movie.

  • Feb. 28, 2006, 11:11 a.m. CST

    THE NEW WORLD

    by SLAVE69

    This movie was as good as "the thin read line" maybe even better.The only disepointing thing was that when i googled the most beautiful girl I've seen on the big screen for a long time, she was only 16 years old. That means I have to wait 2 years before i can ask Q'orianka Kilcheron a date. Sadly she will be big Hollywood star then and I will still be a landscapegardener.

  • April 18, 2006, 2:18 a.m. CST

    Malick

    by The_Lion

    Malick is a god. This movie is the best movie made in the last ten years, easy. It is a fucking masterpiece. End of story.

  • March 9, 2009, 7:32 a.m. CST

    Kobaal

    by Kobaal

    Just watched this for the first time. What a beautiful film. And good review, Harry.

  • March 9, 2009, 7:42 a.m. CST

    Not a narcissist,

    by Kobaal

    Just typed my handle in the subject line by mistake. It's late.