The Tree of Life (2008)
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Critic Reviews for The Tree of Life
It's a sympathetic notion, to be sure, but it leaves one feeling you're on the couch with Volterra, not on a roots quest.
[Volterra's] affinity for Italian stereotypes is countered with delightful truculence by the film's most engaging character, her down-to-earth octogenarian aunt Viviana.
Ms. Volterra, acting as narrator and interviewee herself, can't seem to resist the urge to be the star of her own film, which too often feels like a wearisome exercise in self-therapy.
It's clear why Volterra would have felt driven to make such a film. It's less clear why anyone not related to her would pay to see it.
Byler has a knack for elegant composition, as well as the hazy middle ground between friendship and friendship with a sexual asterisk.
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