I feel like there must be dozens of reasons for me to dislike this movie, but I like this movie.
I tagged along with my little women to see this, and I loved it. I want to see it again, which is rare for me with period pieces or literary adaptations. Gerwig’s sensibilities are on full display, and the interplay of narrative, score, dialogue, and engaging sentimentality is just right. The cast is stellar, but the real star is Florence Pugh as Amy. I don’t remember the last time an actor caught me by surprise quite like she does here.
I’m making my way through Malick’s work in preparation for A Hidden Life. I’ve intentionally avoided reading about any of the Malick films I haven’t seen yet, including this one. It knocked me out. It’s visually stunning, as I expect from Malick, but it’s the poetic form and the resolution of the narrative that so distinctly mark The New World. I’ve never seen anything like it, and the fact that I say that every time I see one of his films makes it no less true this time.