Terrence Malick might be the most elusive film director of all time. It’s been three years since the filmmaker released his most recent film, A Hidden Life, which featured Malick’s signature wide-angle lenses and a unique sense of wonder. Still, the filmmaker has returned for a short period with his latest project. 

While Malick has been busy working for the last several years on his upcoming Biblical epic, The Way of the Wind, Malick has completed a new project featuring his unique visual style and dreamlike sensibilities. 

Serving as the director for a new Louis Vuitton commercial, Malick weaves together a nostalgic daydream of scenes from various locations throughout the United States with a cast of children

Terrence Malick collaborates with Louis Vuitton'Towards A Dream in the USA'Credit: Louis Vuitton

According to IndieWire, the official synopsis for the collab between Malick and the 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 the 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.”

Malick’s love for heightening the naturalism of landscapes serves this travelogue approach to the commercial perfectly. The sweeping shots of the awe-inducing landscapes reflect the children’s emotions as they travel through a Louis Vuitton truck with a mirror inside that reflects the beauty surrounding the actors. 

Check out the full advertisement, Towards a Dream in the USA, here: 

Many of Malick’s past collaborators have compared his approach to filmmaking to painting, with the late actor Christopher Plummer even complaining in a 2012 interview that Malick prioritizes beautiful shot composition over the story. It seems to Malick that there is more story in those lovely moments than words and specific visual cues cannot capture. 

Commercials can be tricky for storytellers, but Malick and Louis Vuitton wanted to capture the innocence of the imagination in America. If there is one director who could do that through a single image, then look no further than Malick. There is no compromise for a gorgeous shot that can convey so many meanings for so many different people. 

Let us know what you think of Malick’s latest project in the comments! 

Source: IndieWire