Commentary Magazine


Nefesh Yehudi in a Brad Pitt/Sean Penn Trailer?

Despite the presence (or perhaps because of the presence) in the cast of Brad Pitt and Sean Penn, I doubt you will see the 2011 film release of The Tree of Life. It’s the latest from the writer-director Terence Malick, whose World War II travesty The Thin Red Line and John Smith-and-Pocahontas travesty The New World marked him as perhaps the most self-serious and pretentious filmmaker on earth. So I won’t belabor the point about the nonsense dripping from this trailer.

I did want to point out one peculiarity, though. Thirty-four seconds into the proceedings, in a scene set on a small-town American street in the 1950s, the soundtrack swells with the sound of … Hatikvah, the national anthem of the State of Israel. Much as I appreciate the subliminal Zionism, I suspect it’s entirely unintentional. But funny.