While I haven't seen the script for Terrence Malick's The Tree of Life, I can't imagine it could look much different from this:
Postman brings bad news.
Anguished cry. (Music plays.)
Brad Pitt clenches jaw.
Jessica Chastain stares out window. A lot. Walks through woods.
(Shots of trees. Show from lots of angles.)
Sean Penn looks bored, sullen. (Show him walking around and moping. He mopes inside a beautiful modern home and again inside a beautiful modern skyscraper. He looks up at buildings and trees.)
(Music plays while cells divide, water flows, jellyfish swim, hammerhead sharks swarm, blades of grass move, lava flows, waves crash, the heart of a fetus beats.)
A baby is born.
A dried-up leaf blows away.
Brad Pitt turns out to be a jerky dad. His wife stays silent through most of the movie, including while he rips into sons -- especially eldest.
Eldest son starts to resent Brad Pitt.
Brad Pitt clenches jaw more.
Family eats dinner, goes to church, dad goes to work, but isn't all that successful.
Everyone from generations past winds up walking around on a beach.
(Music plays while cells divide, water flows, blades of grass move, lava flows, waves crash.)
I kid you not. This goes on for nearly two-and-a-half hours. The theater manager joked with me after the show that they're going to start passing out stickers that read, "I survived The Tree of Life." There's a handmade sign they've put up at the theater entry -- just for this film -- that reads something like, "We cannot give refunds because you don't like the film. Please educate yourself about this film before coming to see it. Thank you for your understanding."
It is an awful, pointless bore. A series of visually beautiful vignettes with no story to tie them all together. It's not enough for me to advise you not to see it. Warn your friends that they shouldn't see it, either. Skip it!