(born 30 November 1943) is an
. In a career spanning decades, Malick
has directed one short film and four feature-length films.
Numerous critics consider Malick's films to be masterpieces, in
Days of Heaven
. Malick was
nominated for an Academy Award
and Best Director
for The Thin Red Line
work is often characterized by naturalist cinematography
and a meditative directorial
and editing style; his films are full of rich, lingering,
repetitive images of natural beauty. He makes extensive use of
off-screen narration by his characters, as well as music, to
illuminate, heighten and counterpoint the action on screen.
Although not otherwise in public life, friends such as actor
have always remarked that
he is a very warm and humble man who prefers to work without media
intrusion. His contracts stipulate that no current photographs of
him are to be taken, and he routinely declines requests for
interviews. His only known public appearance was in October 2007
for a conversation with film historians Antonio Monda
and Mario Sesti as part of the
Rome Film Festival.
state Malick's place of birth as either Ottawa, Illinois or Waco,
Texas. His father was an oil company executive of
Assyrian descent, and Malick grew up
in Oklahoma and Texas, working on
oil fields as a young man. He moved to Austin, Texas and graduated
from St. Stephen's Episcopal School. Malick studied philosophy under Stanley Cavell at Harvard
University, graduating summa
cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa
in 1965, and went on to Magdalen College, Oxford as a Rhodes
He had a disagreement with his advisor,
, over his thesis on the
concept of the world in Kierkegaard
, and Wittgenstein
, and ultimately left Oxford
without taking a doctorate
. In 1969,
published Malick's translation of Heidegger's Vom
Wesen des Grundes
as The Essence of Reasons
back to the United
States, he taught philosophy at Massachusetts
Institute of Technology while freelancing as a journalist, writing articles
for Newsweek, The New Yorker, and Life.
Malick got his start in film after earning an MFA
from the AFI Conservatory
in 1969, directing
. It was at the AFI that he established
contacts with people such as Jack
and agent Mike Medavoy
who found freelance script-doctoring work for him.
After working as a screenwriter
, Malick directed Badlands
and Days of Heaven
. Following the release
of Days of Heaven, Malick moved to France and
disappeared from public view for twenty years.
to film in 1998 with The Thin Red Line
movie was nominated for seven Academy
, but did not win any of them.
fourth feature, Malick considered directing a biopic about Che Guevara and his failed revolution in
Bolivia, and wrote a
screenplay for it, but later relinquished the project to director
to make The New World
instead, the script of which he finished in the late 1970s. The
film features a romantic interpretation of the story of John Smith
, filmed in his customary transcendental
style. The film
received a limited release on December 25, 2005 and a general
release in mid-January 2006. It was nominated for an Academy Award
and received largely mixed
reviews during its theatrical run. Over one million feet of film
was shot during the isolated filming schedule, resulting in a final
film which ran for 150 minutes before Malick decided to temporarily
withdraw the film from release and re-edit it into a 135-minute
version. On October 14, 2008, a 172 minute version of The New
was released on DVD.
currently editing his fifth feature, The Tree of Life, which was
filmed in Smithville,
Texas and elsewhere during 2008.
originally began life as Q
, which Malick had planned as
his follow-up to Days of
before embarking on a 20 year hiatus from
Malick is also credited with the screenplay for Pocket Money
(1972), and he wrote early
drafts of Great Balls of
(1989) and Dirty
Malick has written an original screenplay for The Thin Red
producers Robert Michael Geisler and John Roberdeau
entitled The English-Speaker
and has also been linked to a screen adaptation of Walker Percy's The
. Rumors were reported in May 2006 linking Malick
to a possible adaptation of J.
D. Salinger's Catcher in the Rye
, but neither of
these projects have come to fruition. Malick is believed to be
working on an adaptation of the medieval poem Sir Gawain and the Green
, which is rumored to star The Thin Red
Line's Jim Caviezel
Malick married Michele Morette in 1985; they divorced in 1998.
Michele Morette died in July 2008 from pancreatic cancer in Paris,
France. Malick has been married to Alexandra "Ecky"
Wallace since 1998, and currently resides in Austin, Texas.
- Peter Biskind, 1998. Easy
Riders / Raging Bulls, London: Bloomsbury.
- Peter Biskind, 1998. ‘The Runaway
Genius’, Vanity Fair, 460, Dec, 116-125.
- Stanley Cavell, 1979. The
World Viewed: Reflections on the Ontology of Film, Enlarged
Edition, Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
- Michel Chion, 1999. The Voice
in Cinema, translated by Claudia Gorbman, New York &
Chichester: Columbia University Press.
- Michel Ciment, 1975. ‘Entretien avec Terrence Malick’,
Positif, 170, Jun, 30-34.
- G. Richardson Cook, 1974. ‘The Filming of Badlands: An
Interview with Terry Malick’, Filmmakers Newsletter, 7:8,
- Charlotte Crofts, 2001, ‘From the “Hegemony of the Eye” to the
“Hierarchy of Perception”: The Reconfiguration of Sound and Image
in Terrence Malick’s Days of Heaven’, Journal of Media
Practice, 2:1, 19-29.
- Terry Curtis Fox, 1978. ‘The Last Ray of Light’, Film
Comment, 14:5, Sept/Oct, 27- 28.
- Cameron Docherty, 1998. ‘Maverick Back from the Badlands’,
The Sunday Times, Culture, 7 Jun, 4.
- Martin Donougho, 1985. ‘West of Eden: Terrence Malick’s Days of
Heaven’, Postscript: Essays in Film and the Humanities, 5:1, Fall,
- Roger Ebert, Review of Days of Heaven, Chicago Sun-Times
- Graham Fuller, 1998. ‘Exile on Main Street’, The
Observer, 13 Dec, 5.
- John Hartl, 1998. ‘Badlands Director Ending his Long Absence’,
Seattle Times, 8 Mar.
- Brian Henderson, 1983. ‘Exploring Badlands’. Wide
Angle: A Quarterly Journal of Film Theory, Criticism and
Practice, 5:4, 38-51.
- Les Keyser, 1981. Hollywood in the Seventies, London:
- Terrence Malick, 1973. Interview the morning after
Badlands premiered at the New York Film Festival,
American Film Institute Report, 4:4, Winter, 48.
- Terrence Malick, 1976. Days of Heaven, Registered with
the Writers Guild of America, 14 Apr; revised 2 Jun.
- James Monaco, 1972.
‘Badlands’, Take One, 4:1, Sept/Oct, 32.
- Kim Newman, 1994. ‘Whatever Happened to Whatsisname?’,
Empire, Feb, 88-89.
- Brooks Riley, 1978. ‘Interview with Nestor Almendros’, Film
Comment, 14:5, Sept/Oct, 28-31.
- J. P. Telotte, 1986. ‘Badlands and the Souvenir
Drive’, Western Humanities Review, 40:2, Summer,
- Beverly Walker, 1975. ‘Malick on Badlands’, Sight
and Sound, 44:2, Spring, 82-3.
- Janet Wondra, 1994. ‘A Gaze Unbecoming: Schooling the Child for
Femininity in Days of Heaven’, Wide Angle, 16:4,
- :: rogerebert.com :: Reviews :: Badlands
- :: rogerebert.com :: Great Movies :: Days of
- Terrence Malick - Biography (IMDb)
- Davenport, Hayes; December 15, 2005; Alumni Watch: Terence Malick '65; The Harvard
Crimson; retrieved May 3, 2007.
- Schermaglie: Festa di Roma - Gli amori di Terrence
- IGN: Featured Filmmaker: Terrence Malick
- Ones that got away | Special Reports | Guardian