The Soul Announces Itself: Terrence Malick’s Emersonian Cinema

  • Author(s): Bill Fech
  • When: 2013-05
  • Where: Source
  • This thesis takes an auteurist approach to the films of director Terrence Malick byreading them through the spiritual philosophy of Ralph Waldo Emerson. Iestablish Malick’s thematic concern with the human struggle to achieve betterexistences in a broken material world, a concern buoyed by his signature aestheticthat includes expressive voice-overs and sublime photography of nature. I close-read each of Malick’s six films, drawing upon tenants of Emersonian philosophyto reveal Malick’s expression of transcendent events of the soul against brutalearthly realities.

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