from Wired (article: 10 Most Hated Movies of 2011)
Hailed by critics, The Tree of Life is nearly three hours of director Terrence Malick indulging his worst impulses and torturing those moviegoers who are too smart to fall prey to a self-imposed delusion that if what they are watching is Malick, it must be deep.
His method in the film is to take the indulgences from his better movies and turn them into this movie. If I hold a shot of grass swaying for minutes on end, that’s deep. Nature is awesome — let’s show volcanoes erupting for five minutes — that’s deep. Geez, bad things happen to good people — let’s say there is a way of nature and a way of grace. That’s deep. And whatever you do, hold the shot for five minutes. Man, wind is nice.
Malick has grown so enamored of his own questioning of the world that he thinks he can dispense with narrative and instead show three hours of footage based on masturbatory, philosophical musings that even a stoned college student would dismiss as superficial five minutes after putting down the bong. It’s a pity no one told him how embarrassing this movie is, especially since it comes from a director who gave the world three amazing movies — Badlands, The Thin Red Line and Days of Heaven. —Ryan Singel
Worst part: Twenty minutes of B-roll Nova documentary nature footage set to dramatic music that supposedly shows the birth of the universe, including gorillas fighting.
Redeeming feature: The unintended comedy of a low-rent CGI dinosaur showing mercy on a deerlike thing. It’s supposed to be a deep moral moment that instead looks like something found on the editing floor of Jurassic Park.
Personally, this has to be most accurate critic I’ve read about this movie. I still have trouble understanding how this movie holds a 7.2 rating at IMDb but oh well, I guess all the deep and philosophical people went there and rated it.
This piece of article at wired.com is priceless.