Here’s a further update of Austin director Terrence Malick’s “Knight of Cups,” which has its Berlin premiere Feb. 6. This description is from the official festival program and provides more details than the earlier synopsis.
“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?”
So, the Knight of Cups is a tarot card. And when you google the tarot card, you get stuff like this:
When you are inspired but not productive, when you have champagne taste but a wine cooler budget, when a smooth-talking person in your life has big plans but no resources … in all of these cases and more, look for the Knight of Cups to appear in your Tarot reading to describe this phenomena.
The knight is typically described as more in touch with his feelings, but that doesn’t mean he isn’t a manly man. The white horse on which he rides is apparently a symbol of masculinity.
So, there you have it. Christian Bale is the knight of the title, and he’s torn between two women, Cate Blanchett and Natalie Portman, who represent the “real world” and the world of beauty and sensuality.