Filmmakers can, and most do, choose to feed audiences weaned on main stream storytelling with obvious plot points linked by the script in a familiar cause and effect chain that ensures narrative thrust is undisturbed. As Jana Branch says, The Tree of Life does not blatantly work to seduce the audience so much as open a sensual door inviting their experience. However, having opened that surreal door into the unknown, Malick invites spectators to abandon resistance and succumb to the brilliant light that exposes memory's dark places to view. Some people did leave each of the cinema screenings of The Tree of Life that attended. Those said, even sardonic reviewers did not miss that this is a film of high purpose. But The Tree of Life sets off the razor-edged prism of his cityscapes against the centre-ground churn of cosmic space and time.