The Tree Of Life might be the most overrated movie I've ever watched. I've seen films before which received rave reviews that I didn't connect much with, but I could at least see what people liked about them. Not in this instance. I've completely run out of things to say about the Emperor of Emptiness, Terrence Malick, because each time I end up at the same conclusion: The cinematography is gorgeous and the lighting is beautiful, but the characterisation is non-existent, the acting is disinterested, the narration and score are insanely irritating, it drags on for far too long and all of it is wrapped up in a big, thick, inescapable blanket of pretentiousness. The Tree Of Life fails primarily because it doesn't tell a story, instead shoving constant artsy symbolism and imagery down the audience's throat until they gag. Apparently, Mr. Malick found God before making this film, and it turns out he was very, very eager to inform us of this fact, so rather than reading from a script the cast seem to have been given a prayer book instead, making the whole think feel less like a piece of entertainment than an interminable Sunday church service. There is no way to connect, absorb or enjoy it. It's the most blatant example of cinematic self-pleasuring and aggrandisement I've ever seen, and a classic example of how a fashionable director can make seemingly anything and, no matter how pompous, vain or lifeless, will still be showered with praise.