Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBBB.5.
USA, 1973. Warner Bros., Pressman-Williams, Jill Jakes Production. Screenplay by Terrence Malick. Cinematography by Tak Fujimoto, Stevan Larner, Brian Probyn. Produced by Terrence Malick. Music by George Aliceson Tipton. Production Design by Jack Fisk. Costume Design by Rosanna Norton. Film Editing by Robert Estrin.
Terrence Malick’s first classic is also the film that introduced Sissy Spacek and Martin Sheen to a wide audience, a crime drama that plays as a gritty Bonnie And Clyde of sorts. Sheen is a badass drifter who picks Spacek up and together they murder her entire family. They then travel across the Dakota badlands on a killing spree, doing their best to avoid the authorities until the inevitable catches up with them. Spacek is fantastic, and Sheen at his most James Deanesque is a memorable anti-hero icon. Based on the real-life Starweather-Fugate killing spree of 1968, the story here has been fictionalized and the names changed but the disguise is very thin.