Anyone who’s seen Terrence Malick’s last few movies knows that the media-shy filmmaker stopped concerning himself with living up to people’s expectations of him long ago, if indeed he ever worried about that in the first place. The “Tree of Life,” “Days of Heaven,” and “Thin Red Line” director appears to have taken time out of his schedule working on “Radegund” — an upcoming World War II drama that, if early reports are to be believed, will be more structured than his recent output — to work on an advertisement for the Google Pixel 3.
The video’s description says it was made “in collaboration with director Terrence Malick and his co-workers,” and it shows — any number of ads made in the last several years bear his influence, but this one looks like it could be a trailer for one of Malick’s own movies. A number of his signature flourishes are on display: children musing about this and that, shots of nature, and the sense that all these small moments are meant to add up to something bigger than themselves.
Set to M83’s song “Raconte-Moi Histoire,” it features the voice of a child: “I heard about this frog. It’s a very tiny frog, but it’s also very special,” intones said kiddo. “If you touch it, your world can touch forever. Blue becomes red, and red becomes blue — nothing’s ever quite the same.”
Malick’s next movie is based on the life of Franz Jägerstätter, an Austrian conscientious objector who refused to fight for the Nazis. August Diehl plays Jägerstätter, with Valerie Pachner, Michael Nyqvist, Matthias Schoenaerts, Jürgen Prochnow, and Bruno Ganz all co-starring.