Episode 2

Tree of Life (2011) and The Master (2012)

In the second episode of our cycle Set in the 1950s, we look at two auteurs who swing for the fences with Terrence Malick's Tree of Life (2011) and Paul Thomas Anderson's The Master (2012).

Special guests and friends of the show Molly and Ryan join us to discuss what happens when Malick and Anderson get the creative freedom and financing to direct the movie they always wanted to make. Tree of Life kicked off a recent prolific period for the ever reclusive Malick. He originally had the idea for Life back in the late 1970s while working on his masterful Days of Heaven. Then he disappeared for twenty years. Similarly, Anderson had been ruminating on the root idea behind The Master for many years before he was able to finally make it happen.

Both directors go all in, and the final results vary widely depending on the viewer's willingness to go along with them.

Note: This podcast was recorded and produced during the 2023 WGA and SAG-AFTRA strike. Without the labor of writers and actors currently on strike, Asteroid City and The Fabelmans would not exist. Support the artists who make the art you love.