Unless you’re a devoted fan of his type of film making director Terrance Malik’s movies are always a hard watch. His use of cinematography with long lingering shots, normally of peoples’ faces, tend to drag his movies out to inordinate lengths. Why tells a story in 90 minutes when I can keep you in a cinema for nearly 3 hours seems to be his moto.

Sadly “A Hidden Life” sticks to Malik’s tried and tested formula and at nearly 3 hours long it becomes something of an endurance test.

“A Hidden Life” tells the true story of Franz Jagerstatter (August Diehl), a devoted catholic, farmer and father of three children who refused to swear an allegiance to Adolph Hitler after he was conscripted into the German army during World War II. For his defiance Jagerstatter was thrown into prison where he suffered terribly at the hands of the Nazis.

Underneath the bloated running time there’s an interesting story to be told and in the hands of a director who knew when to say cut “A Hidden Life” might have been worth seeing. Sadly however in the hands of Malik it just becomes a long hard slog that won’t convert any new comers to his self-indulgent way of making movies.


A Hidden Life (12A)

2h 54m

Director: Terrence Malick

UK Release: Friday 17th January 2020
US Release: 13th December 2019

A Hidden Life - "We Lived Above The Clouds" Clip

A Hidden Life - "I'm With You " Clip

A Hidden Life - "The Girls" Clip

A Hidden Life - "We're Killing Innocent People" Clip