Excerpt: Terrence Malick burst onto the filmmaking scene in 1973 with Badlands , a refreshingly different approach to filmmaking from an American director that was a result of Malick drawing inspiration from directors like Françios Truffaut and, more apparently, Arthur Penn.
Excerpt: "Suppose I shot you. How'd that be?" That challenge, by Kit Carruthers (Martin Sheen) to the father of his underage lover, Holly (Sissy Spacek), is a trademark purr, oscillating between candor and impassivity, his words bouncing off the shabby walls of Holly's quiet South Dakota home like a hypothetical thought experiment instead of a real threat.
Conclusion: Fans of the New Hollywood era should enjoy 'Badlands', as right from the start, Malick revealed himself to be a filmmaker with a vision, and thanks to Criterion, the film has never looked better. Not surprisingly, Malick isn't on hand in the extras, but those who worked with him on the film provide some insight into the man and his process. This is highly recommended.
Conclusion: Badlands is one of the all-time great directing debuts and it's one that Terrence Malick has yet to best even as his ambitions and technical prowess have grown. Long worthy of a better release, this masterpiece finally gets it in this strong Blu-ray Disc that's likely to satisfy both Malick fans and the faithful Criterion customer base that will be happy to discover this 1970s gem.
Summary: Terrence Malick's "Badlands" (1973) arrives on Blu-ray courtesy of Criterion. The supplemental features on the disc include the film's original theatrical trailer; new documentary featuring interviews with actors Martin Sheen and Sissy Spacek and production designer Jack Fisk; new video interview with producer Edward Pressman; new video interview with associate editor Billy Weber; and a 1993 episode of the television series American Justice .