Three years have passed since Terrence Malick released his most recent film, the Germany-set World War II period piece “A Hidden Life.” And while the director has been hard at work on his upcoming Biblical epic “The Way of the Wind,” a reimagining of key scenes from the life of Jesus that notably stars Mark Rylance as Satan, the scope of that project has caused it to be delayed several times.
But while Malick’s fans wait for that passion project to see the light of day, the director has completed a new project featuring his unique visual style. Malick has directed a new Louis Vuitton commercial that weaves together dreamlike shots of various locations throughout the United States.
The official synopsis for the collaboration between Malick and the legendary fashion house reads: “As part of an enduring journey exploring dreamlike landscapes around the globe, Louis Vuitton lands in the USA for the latest chapter of its ongoing campaign. In a series of chapters thus far spanning Iceland, Greece, Jordan and France, this latest campaign touches down in wild surroundings of New Mexico and Texas where the iconic Louis Vuitton trunk acts as an imaginary vessel from which a young boy and his band of friends set out on an adventure. Photographer Viviane Sassen captures whimsical shots depicting the unbridled imagination of youth. In White Sands, New Mexico and the wilderness outside of Austin, Texas, perspectives are played with, shadows enlivened, and nature harnessed.”
The travelogue approach to commercial filmmaking is a perfect fit for Malick’s style. Many of his past collaborators have compared his approach to filmmaking to that of a painter. Some, like Christopher Plummer, even complain that his prioritization of beautiful shot composition comes at the expense of story.
“Terry gets terribly involved in poetic shots,” Plummer said in a 2012 interview discussing his experience shooting “The New World” with Malick. “Which are gorgeous, but they’re paintings. All of them. He gets lost in that, and the stories get diffused, particularly in our film.”
You can watch Malick’s new Louis Vuitton commercial, “Towards a Dream in the USA,” below.