Thursday 9 April 2009

Badlands (1973)

Terrence Malick made his debut feature Badlands on a shoestring budget; yet, as many before him (e.g. Satyajit Ray) and since (e.g. Jim Jarmusch) have proved, a great work of art depends only so much on the thickness of the producer’s wallet. One of the finest depictions of how crime lurks in every nook and corner of human society, the movie has two absolutely mundane characters become partners in crime as they leave a trail of bodies from the idyllic South Dakota to the “badlands of Montana.” The movie’s sparse treatment, backed by a haunting score, suffused a deep poetic realism in the tale of ennui and casual violence, and made the movie a lyrical ode to the aimless journey of the two lost souls and their killing spree which turned them into icons. Both Martin Sheen and Sissy Spacek (who also happens to be the story’s narrator) managed to put in natural performances. The most definitive aspect of this movie, in fact, lay in its lush photography. The stunning yet bleak panoramic visuals of the vast barren spaces in the Midwest didn’t just make for a near hypnotic viewing experience, but also made the theme that much more fatalistic, disturbing, complex.

Director: Terrence Malick
Genre: Drama/Crime Drama/Existential Drama/Road Movie/Americana
Language: English
Country: US


Unknown said...

A shoestring budget can kick up a storm.

Always glad to read the names of Jim and Satyajit associated with quality 'Independent' cinema.

Amritorupa Kanjilal said...

hi shubhajit, i watched two movies last weekend, L'il Miss Sunshine, and The Shawshank Redemption :)
you must have seen shawshank, but have you seen LMS?

Shubhajit said...

@Karthikey - Yeah, absolutely, lesser the budget, lesser the producer's chance of wielding his baton.

@LGL - Great. Shawshank's a nice movie. And yeah, I've seen Little Miss Sunshine (saw it when I was in college), and well, I loved the movie. Give me good black/wry humour anyday and I'll lap it up!

Amritorupa Kanjilal said...

I gave you an award... come and see! come and see!

ShantanuDas said...

yes!! she is right!
4m now on I will come to see ur review here bfr downloading a movie!!

Shubhajit said...

@LGL - Thanks a lot.

@Shantanu - You're most welcome. It would be great if I manage to introduce some good movie to you.

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