For Terrence Malik’s latest experimental film, Knight of Cups, Christian Bale is set to play Rick, a man in possession of everything and yet nothing. One who constantly chases after the next big thing as a screenwriter, yet yearns for something to paper over the crippling emptiness in his life. It’s a intriguing paradox for a lead character, and one that is illustrated to wonderful effect in today’s new poster for the film.
Turning Rick’s world upside-down in every sense of the word, the one-sheet arrives by way of Fandango, and is stylized in the vein of a tarot card. While they’re often associated with spiritual readings and impending doom, tarot cards are said to be “powerful sources of information [that] come from within; the Tarot aids in coming in contact with one’s Higher Self.” At least, that’s according to How Stuff Works.
Circling back to Knight of Cups, though, and it’s clear Malik’s latest will find Bale’s Hollywood screenwriter in the throes of an existential crisis, as he strikes up relationships with a stripper (Teresa Palmer), a model (Freida Pinto) and a married woman (Natalie Portman). But such questionable indulgences don’t offset his personal depression, with the director’s film ultimately sending Rick on a quest for salvation.
Also starring Cate Blanchett, Natalie Portman, Brian Dennehy, Antonio Banderas, Freida Pinto, Wes Bentley, Isabel Lucas, Teresa Palmer, Cherry Jones, Armin Mueller-Stahl, and Imogen Poots, Knight of Cups is finally set to open in theaters on March 4, 2016 courtesy of Broad Green Pictures.
Rick is a slave to the Hollywood system. He is addicted to success but simultaneously despairs at the emptiness of his life. He is at home in a world of illusions but seeks real life. Like the tarot card of the title, Rick is easily bored and needs outside stimulation. But the Knight of Cups is also an artist, a romantic and an adventurer. In Terrence Malick’s seventh film a gliding camera once again accompanies a tormented hero on his search for meaning. Once again a voiceover is laid over images which also seek their own authenticity.
And once again Malick seems to put the world out of joint. His symphonic flow of images contrasts cold, functional architecture with the ageless beauty of nature. Rick’s internal monologue coalesces with the voices of the women who cross his path, women who represent different principles in life: while one lives in the real world, the other embodies beauty and sensuality. Which path will Rick choose? In the city of angels and the desert that surrounds it, will he find his own way?