Days of Heaven (Criterion Collection)

Directed By: Terrence Malick Starring: Richard Gere Brooke Adams

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Product Overview

One-of-a-kind filmmaker-philospher Terrence Malick has created some of the most visually arresting movies of the twentieth century, and his glorious period tragedy Days of Heaven, featuring Oscar-winning cinematography by Nestor Almendros, stands out among them. In 1910, a Chicago steel worker (Richard Gere) accidentally kills his supervisor and flees to the Texas panhandle with his girlfriend (Brooke Adams) and little sister (Linda Manz) to work harvesting wheat in the fields of a stoic farmer (Sam Shepard). A love triangle, a swarm of locusts, a hellish fire-Malick captures it all with dreamlike authenticity, creating at once a timeless American idyll and a gritty evocation of turn-of-the-century labor.


Studio Image Entertainment
SKU 205068953
UPC 715515026321
UPC 14 00715515026321
Format DVD
Release Date 10/23/2007
Essential Cinema
Love Triangle
Period Piece
Theatrical Release
Editors Note
Note Terrence Malick's follow-up to BADLANDS is an exquisitely photographed story of a group of early-20th-century itinerant workers who find themselves entangled in a deadly love triangle. Bill (Richard Gere) and Abby (Brooke Adams) are lovers who are forced to flee Chicago after Bill accidentally murders his foreman. Together, with Bill's little sister, Linda (Linda Manz), they settle on the land of a wealthy farmer (Sam Shepard) and spend their days working in the wheat fields. Bill discovers that the farmer is terminally ill and convinces Abby to marry him so they can inherit his fortune. As the days progress, it becomes apparent that the farmer isn't getting any sicker, and when he discovers that Abby and Bill had initially set out to con him, their carefree existence comes to a deadly end.^Notorious for its extended postproduction schedule, DAYS OF HEAVEN remains a beautifully composed work of art. Malick uses dialogue minimally, sometimes choosing not to fade in the sound of a scene until the actors have finished speaking. To combat this, he applies Linda's innocent voice-over--as he did with Sissy Spacek's in BADLANDS--to add a poetic dimension. Combined with Nestor Almendros's Oscar-winning cinematography and Ennio Morricone's mellifluent score, DAYS OF HEAVEN is a timeless motion picture that confirms Malick's directorial prowess.
Plot Summary
Summary Terrence Malick's second film is a lyrical screen poem about life in America at the turn of the century. When a Chicago steel-mill worker is fired after a fight with his supervisor, he hops a train for the Great Plains with his girlfriend and his younger sister. The trio join itinerant workers following the farming season and find a place with a quiet, lonely landowner. As the year passes and the harvest nears, a fateful love triangle develops, with fiery consequences. The performances match the moody compositions in this elegy for the premodern prairie, which now stands firmly as one of the most beautiful motion pictures of all time.
Memorable Quotes
Quote "I been thinkin' what ta do wit' my fyoochuh... I could be a mud doctuh..." (Linda Manz)
Variety "...DAYS OF HEAVEN is a dramatically moving and technically breathtaking American art film, one of the great cinematic achievements of the last decade..." 09/13/1978
New York Times Included in the New York Times's "10 BEST FILMS OF 1978" -- "...[Malick is] extraordinarily gifted....Excellent performers..." 12/31/1978 p.II:1
Chicago Sun-Times "...DAYS OF HEAVEN is above all one of the most beautiful films ever made..." 12/07/1997 p.5
USA Today "...Gorgeous....A bizarre, early century love triangle..." 10/11/1996 p.3D
Sight and Sound "Terrence Malick's melodrama is an unlikely masterpiece, and one of the most beautiful films ever committed to celluloid." 02/01/2008 p.96-97
Total Film 5 stars out of 5 -- "Largely lensed in the window between sunset and nightfall, it's a magic hour masterpiece..." 10/01/2011
Terrence Malick
Richard Gere
Brooke Adams
Cast & Crew
Bert Schneider - Producer
Billy Weber - Editor
Brooke Adams - Actor
Ennio Morricone - Original Music By
Jack Fisk - Art Director
Jacob Brackman - Executive Producer
Linda Manz - Actor
Nestor Almendros - Cinematographer
Richard Gere - Actor
Sam Shepard - Actor
Terrence Malick - Director
Terrence Malick - Writer
Technical Info
Original Release Date 1978
Catalog ID 1717
UPC 00715515026321
Number of Discs 1
Running Time 95 minutes
Color Color
Original Language English
Available Audio Tracks English
Aspect Ratio
Anamorphic Widescreen  1.78:1
Winner (1980) British Academy Awards, Ennio Morricone, Anthony Asquith Award for Film Music
Winner (1979) Cannes Film Festival, Terrence Malick, Best Director,Oscar, Nestor Almendros, Best Cinematography
Nominee (1979) Cannes Film Festival, Terrence Malick, Golden Palm Award,Golden Globe, Terrence Malick, Best Director - Motion Picture,Golden Globe, Days of Heaven, Best Motion Picture - Drama,Oscar, Patricia Norris, Best Costume Design,Oscar, Ennio Morricone, Best Music, Original Score,Oscar, John Wilkinson, et. al., Best Sound
ReviewSource Chicago Sun-Times
Review Terence Malick's "Days of Heaven'' has been praised for its painterly images and evocative score, but criticized for its muted emotions: Although passions erupt in a deadly love triangle, all the feelings are somehow held at arm's length. This observation is true enough, if you think only about the actions of the adults in the story. But watching this 1978 film again recently, I was struck more than ever with the conviction that this is the story of a teenage girl, told by her, and its subject is the way that hope and cheer have been beaten down in her heart. We do not feel the full passion of the adults because it is not her passion: It is seen at a distance, as a phenomenon, like the weather, or the plague of grasshoppers that signals the beginning of the end...This is a movie made by a man who knew how something felt, and found a way to evoke it in us. That feeling is how a child feels when it lives precariously, and then is delivered into security and joy, and then has it all taken away again--and blinks away the tears and says it doesn't hurt.
Reviewer Roger Ebert
ReviewRating 10
Product Attributes
Actor Malick,Terrence
Music Format DVD
Video Format DVD
The Village Voice The most gorgeously photographed film ever made.
Variety One of the great cinematic achievements of the 1970s.

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