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Aro Recommended New World, The


USA 2006, 130 minutes
Dir. Terrence Malick
Rating: [M]
Genres: Action/Adventure, Drama

Topics: Period - 1600s.


Aroview: An epic naturalist meditation on the European settlement of America from dir. Terrence Malick (DAYS OF HEAVEN), which reveals a thoughtful and at times, rapturous imagining of the legend of the 17th century romance between Native American Pocahontas and Englishman John Smith (Farrell).

Lensed with a magnificent attention to light, atmosphere and period detail of an Eden-like wilderness, struggling settlements and English court life, a convincing 'otherness' is conjured up, while performances from Farrell, Kilcher and Bale all present their own interesting ambiguities. However, it is true that an uncertainty of tone plagues Malick's vision - veering between beauty, pomposity and back again - for which the visual splendour does not always compensate, and narrative ellipses are all-too-easily patched with a predominance of voiceover (it was originally released in a 150-minute cut).

Finally though, as a kind of adventure in cinema, this is a worthy progression from the dir.'s THE THIN RED LINE, carrying with grace the symbolic weight of a promising, fraught and fumbled historical moment.

NZ International Film Festival 2006

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DVD Features

  • aspect ratio: 2.35:1

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