living in: days of heaven


When I first saw Days of Heaven, I was blown away. Totally speechless. It is, without a doubt, the most visually beautiful movie I’ve ever seen. Every frame could make me weep. The music. The costumes. The wheat fields. The farmhouse. The farmer. If you want a peek inside my fantasy realms of my brain, this is your chance.

[image above, clockwise from top left: vintage ticking fabric,polermo umbrella $29, reproduction gramophone $184, mechanic’s light $148, empire sofa, bowler hat $100, antique hat rack $500, pheasant feathers]

Set in the fields of the Texas panhandle in 1916, the film follows three migrant laborers and their deepening entanglement with their wheat farmer boss. Steady, mysterious and understated, it never ceases to lure me and by the end I’m all weepy and longing to run through a field by moonlight. Sadly, wheat fields and open sky are in short supply in Brooklyn, so instead I must placate myself with dreams of farmhouse tables, hunting dogs and faraway gramophones playing old timey music. –amy m.

[image above, clockwise from top left: antique garden forks $195,wooden bowl $20, wheat sheathes $14, mirror $368, wool blanket $ 470, german shorthaired pointer , farm table $1000, grasshopper print $40]

  1. breanne says:

    this made my day – awesome pick for this series! Terrence Malick is so underrated!

  2. Celeste says:

    How fabulous!

    P.S. – I’ve never seen the movie, but the pups in the film look like English pointers, not German ones. Though I can vouch for German Shorthaired (and Wirehaired … and Italian Spinoni) — great dogs! :)

  3. Liane says:

    Ooooo. How have I not heard of this movie? I need to see it.

  4. nath says:

    *shamefaced* to admit i have never seen this film, but your description and that still of the house (that house!) make me want to run to the video store to see if they have it. right now.

    another great post Amy!

  5. sara says:

    devastatingly beautiful… great film choice! malick movies are always so detailed and visually engrossing .

  6. callen says:

    Ohhh good choice! This is one of my favorite movies, and you’ve captured absolutely why!

  7. Sarah says:

    I am sooo with you — but you forgot one of my favorite decorative touches (and moments of great drama in the movie) — that gazebo with the white curtains out in the field! Romantic and ghostly at the same time…

  8. amy m. says:

    Run don’t walk to rent it if you haven’t seen it thus far. Seriously. Maybe watch it alone, it’s a bit slow for some short attention spanned boys.

    German vs. English pointers? I dunno, i used a photo of a german pointer they’re my favorite!

  9. rhondarella says:

    gonna watch it!! :)

  10. Linda in AZ * says:

    * Hi, AMY~~~
    Wellllll, you had me at the GERMAN SHORTHAIRED POINTER!!! As “Mom of a German Shorthair” at HGTV’s RMS, you can just IMAGINE how much I adore these MAGNIFICENT, LOVING, FUN & FUNNY, BEAUTIFUL, SWEET, WONDERFUL HUNTING DOGS~~~ Our “Belle-girl” is the love of our lives!

    Annnd, thanks for the film advice~ It’s about time Jim & I had a “Dinner & a Movie” nite!

    Linda in AZ *

  11. Road to Wonder says:

    One of my all time favorite movies- sweeping, heartbreaking love triangle.
    I am loving this column.

  12. Marisa says:

    Love this movie (so good to see it mentioned) and Love your posts! You are one of my faves!

  13. lydia says:

    someone’s got great taste! amazing, amazing film and love the decor picks. i so want a hat rack like that, but under $500.

    adore this clever column.

  14. Christa says:

    I love how a debate broke out over the dog breed, those are english pointers in the movie (i am slightly partial to them, I had two growing up, my dad being an avid bird hunter). Infact the two pictured look a lot like Sally and Lucy! But i love most of the sporting dog breeds, they are loyal and eager to please.

    But anywho, this is a great movie. Well done!

  15. gorgeous film. it was shot entirely in natural light. pretty sure most of terrence malick’s films are shot this way.

  16. Chelsea says:

    LOL on the inclusion of a doggy, and thumbs up that he/she links to My pit bull, Violet, is black and white, so she matches everything, but I agree that for a room from this movie, a pointer lends just the right amount of “country.” Violet offers a more modern look.

  17. Sofia says:

    You’ve done it again, Amy. Gorgeous!!!

  18. Jessica says:

    I have loved this series of “Living In”! I love finding inspiration in unique ways and you guys really have a knack for it.
    I saw Cider House Rules for the first time last week and there are so many beautiful details in it – I think it would make for a great candidate for a “Living In”

  19. Sacaton June says:

    eep! i’m so glad you did this one! your picks are perfect…i want every sing thing. if only we had wheat fields and open sky in brooklyn!!

  20. Su says:

    Lovely movie, lovely idea and most of all, a lovely selection of stuff. Thanks!

  21. Uncle Beefy says:

    100%, completely, totally right up my alley, Grace. Brilliant! :)

  22. lisa mertins says:

    this and badlands — visually, audibly cerebrally — equally gorgeous. thank you for reminding me. off to the movie house!

  23. clearly i am not in the know….i havent even heard of this movie -Yikes!

  24. Naomi says:

    One of my very favorite movies. Thanks!

  25. What a great series! I love the visuals on this one especially. Will definitely have to see that movie now!

  26. ginny branch says:

    ooh badlands. yes!

  27. Jenean says:

    I am loving this series! You are choosing THE best movies and THE best finds! Really great job- I just love it!

  28. Courtney says:

    You are talking right to me. This is the feeling we are trying to evoke in our bedroom. We want old world, moonlit/dusk/twilight lighting, old chandelier sconces, bodices and specimens in jars on old library shelves with ladder. You achieved our desires with this post. Thanks for the inspiration!

  29. Philomena says:

    Oh, this is one of my favourite movies! Incredible visually, but also, that narrative voice! It’s like the most perfect novel. Thanks, Amy!

  30. Michaela says:

    I have not seen this movie yet. But after I read your post, I want to see the movie. And I like your “placated dreams” very much!

  31. Amy,

    Thank you for telling us about your favorite movies! I love The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford since it has a beautiful scenery. I have made a list of some of my favorite movies as well:

  32. holly says:

    Although these products would not fit into my aesthetic/ “looK”, you have managed to make me want it all! Great story….great visuals…I appreciate it TONS and I am even coveting most of the items shown. THANKS so much. Great texture …..and especially LOVE the mechanic’s light fixture.

  33. Estaban says:

    I remember seeing the film at an indie theater when it came out, and it remains one of my favorites- a movie that most people give me a blank stare when I tell them it is one of the most beautiful and visually evocative films ever made. And I’m not a weepy guy, but I remember leaving the movie and having a private cry!

  34. Megan says:

    We have two German Wirehair Pointers (exactly the same dog, only with longer fur). They are very high energy and love to hunt, but are also very sweet and loyal.

  35. Um … how is it I’ve never heard of this movie?

    Need to rent it now.

  36. Amandita says:

    This looks so enchanting. i will run out to the video store tonight!

    Amy, I was wondering if you could cover the movie You’ve Got Mail….minus the losing my job part…I would love to have her life! I am especially interested to see if you know of any grandfather clocks that have that modern feel that they show briefly in his apartment. How is it they make the big city feel so homey and comfortable?

  37. Kate says:

    It is so true- this movie is visually stunning! I’m going to have to rent it again now :)

  38. Amanda says:

    Thanks so much for the petfinder link! So many purebred pups are in need of a great home and breeders aren’t always (ever?) the answer.

  39. Maggie says:

    I love this movie, and I totally agree with you–the visuals are absolutely stunning and completely atmospheric and evocative. I also read somewhere that the house on the hill (in the sixth image down) was inspired by the painting ‘Christina’s World’ by Andrew Wyeth, which I’ve always loved.

  40. amy m. says:

    wow, it never occurred to me before but this movie really is “christina’s world” incarnate!

  41. Lucia says:

    I don’t know how I have totally missed this movie before – those images are breath-taking – the cornfields and that amazing house! Wow! This is next on my list of films to watch:)

  42. pbird says:

    in 1978 i was too busy watching and dreaming about john travolta and memorizing songs from the movie grease…thank you for posting this!!! love it!!!

  43. Holly says:

    Thank-you, one of my all time favorite films! The musical score is also breathtaking and a favorite. Get it for your next ‘Big Sky’ adventure, or any adventure where you want to be carried away.

  44. Cussot says:

    Utterly beautiful film – it was filmed in Alberta, by the way, if you’re wondering where that enchanting landscape actually is.

  45. Anna says:

    Amy – I’ve not heard of this film, but will seek it out for sure! I have recently re-watched Rosemary’s Baby and immediately after it was over I rushed to my laptop to see if you have written a “Living In” on this movie (hint hint). The decor is fab.
    LOVE this unique and fun column. Thanks for all the inspiration!

  46. Natalie says:

    This totally confirms my love of Terrence Malicks films and I love your living in interpretation! The Thin Red Line got me, but Days of Heaven is just that.

  47. grace says:

    This is one of my all-time fav movie. I love the design inspirations you got from the movie. What an interesting series of posts.

  48. Michel says:

    I must finally see this movie. Have you ever done Sense and Sensibility? Beautiful cinematography, interiors, etc.

  49. Laurie says:

    How did I miss this post? I love your Living In series and have loved Days of Heaven since I first saw it 30+ years ago. That purple light, the gazebo with the curtains, Brooke Adams’ clothes and hair, the soundtrack, melancholy, magical. “The Aquarium” playing in the background of every Victorian/Edwardian fantasy. I’ve always wanted to live in this house, this time (I’m sure the reality was much different).


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