Tree of Life movie matched with eggs-istential food

Starring Brad Pitt, Sean Penn & Jessica Chastain

Rating 7/10


– How to describe the plot? Tree of Life centres around a family in crisis. We first meet Mr and Mrs O’Brien (Pitt and Chastain) and their dysfunctional family in the worst moment of their lives. Most of the film is set in the 1960s when their children were young and their marriage was on the rocks.
– Then the film goes cosmic. Up, up into the sky, the atmosphere, the heavens. Back to the beginning of time when the waters were being formed and light shone weirdly. There are some womb-ic shots and many whispers, questioning God.
– Fast forward to modern day where one of the boys, now a middle aged man, still struggles with the loss of his family member. He looks out of the window, vaguely communicates with his workmates and wifey and floats, floats around his world seeking healing, understanding…?
– Back to 1960s. Back to the father who instilled fear and dejection in his boys. Back to the wife that struggled to maintain a fun and happy home despite all the unspoken pain that hung around her neck like a noose.
– Heaven scene, scooting back around the galaxy scene, more whispering.


This crazy movie is all about life, death, relationships and… stuff and the good old egg represents new life, existence and goes perfectly in the word ‘eggs-istential’, so let’s run with that. Because trees are green (especially when they’re full of life) we start our movie-meal with this recipe – Avocado Toast with Soft-Boiled Eggs from Aida Mollenkamp.


You’re best to watch this film wearing a beret, with a bubble pipe hanging out the side of your mouth. It’s just that kinda movie. Leave all your expectations at the door. Though this film screams “ARTY”, it is also intriguing and soulful.

It’s touted as an experimental movie and that is exactly what it is. The narrative is constantly interrupted with dreamlike sequences. The first half hour was incredibly frustrating, it made me feel so impatient. I love a good story so I found the interruptions quite annoying.

Perhaps if I was in a cruisier mood or had different expectations, I would have just gone with them, on the ride through life, time, existence. And I think that’s what I learned to do as the movie went on. I became more accepting of the strangeness, sadness and whooshes of narrative.

This is a film that may or may not grow on you. A few days after I’d seen it, the film actually started to grow on me. I appreciated its difference and soulfulness. Not sure if I would watch it again, but I can’t say I regret seeing it.

Hmmmm. See for yourself and let me know what you thought! Be prepared for strange, though.

Main meal:

I hope you like eggs because here’s another gorgeous eggy dish that will get you salivating while you’re whisked through time and space in the Tree of Life. It’s a brunch recipe but I reckon it would be great for dinner as well. Our main is Sweet Potato Hash with Sausage and Eggs from The Kitchn.


Image: The Kitchn

Tree of Life Trivia:

  • Budget $32 million yikes!
  • Won the Palme D’Or at the 2011 Cannes Film Festival.
  • The role of Mr O’Brien was to be played by Heath Ledger (Colin Farrell and Mel Gibson were also considered).
  • In Italy a cinema screened this film with the 1st two reels switched and no one realised.
  • In America, they had to put up signs to warn the audience about the strange narrative sequences. Despite this, there were many demands for refunds in the first week.
  • No lighting was used in the house scenes. All naturalo.
  • Penn was critical of Director/Writer Terrence Malick. He didn’t understand the context for his character and thought that a more conventional narrative would have worked better.
  • The butterfly and the bats were not CGI but a real. Yay!
  • Jack O’Brien’s are initials J.O.B, a reference to Job story in the Bible.


Phew! That’s one heck of a film. Enjoy watching those credits roll as you dig into these amazing Chocolate Cream Eggs from Style At Home. End scene.

What rating would you give this film?

More epic films with matching recipes:

* 6 best Hawaiian films paired with Polynesian food
* Wings movie matched with authentic WWI recipes
It Happened One Night film matched with road trip food