Vagrant Journalism

Published pieces from the past, the present and of the potential future.

Posts Tagged ‘badlands’

26 May 2008: ‘Badlands’

Posted by Christina on March 20, 2009

badlandsThe review for this film, ‘Badlands,’ never came out on the day it was supposed to. It actually never came out at all. I didn’t find it in the paper come Monday morning and when I asked, apparently there was breaking news they had to cover and cut the least important piece. ‘Badlands’ was an old film – one of the films in the American Cinema series for the FVC – and the editor said he wasn’t there Sunday when they were putting it all together so it was out of his hands. Convenient. Regardless, here it is, all unedited and without a headline. It really was such a great film.


The Film and Video Center at UCI kicked off their last film series for the school year, New Hollywood Cinema, with Terrence Malick’s directorial debut of a feature film, “Badlands.” This 1973 film, starring the budding star, Charlie Sheen as Kit Carruthers and a daisy-fresh Sissy Spacek as Holly Sargis, broke genre boundaries in the already established and highly-revered Hollywood cinema scheme.

Thanks to a rise in young and independently thinking filmmakers fresh out of film school and highly influenced by French New Wave, films like “Badlands” brought new modes of cinematography, character development and narrative traditions like nothing the industry had seen before. Also referred to as the American New Wave, studios were releasing films the likes of “Easy Rider,” “The Graduate” and “Bonnie and Clyde” that spoke to the irreverent, counterculture youth of the 1960s.

Addressing a young audience in a film about young people, Malick’s premiere opus to the filmmaking world established his signature marks of naturalistic cinematography and the psyche of youth as prominent themes. Within New Hollywood Cinema, “Badlands” shined as critics marveled at Malick’s successful directorial and script writing accomplishment.

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