Sissy Spacek and Martin Sheen in “Badlands.”
Tail Pop

How Terence Malick’s ‘Badlands’ Reinvented Moviegoing

It was the summer of 1974, and for my  sister and me, there was a gross injustice in the world. I could tell you that the injustice involved saving the whales or impeaching Nixon—but we were entitled teenagers who lived near the beach and equated tanning with personal fulfillment; our outrage was over the fog being in all day. […]

Columns

Andrew Davis’ ‘The Fugitive’

At my high school, admission to advanced placement (AP) classes was by invitation only. I tried four times to be admitted into AP English. The head of the department, a sour and exhausted woman named Ms. Gallagher, eventually told me, “I wouldn’t feel good about myself if I encouraged you to pursue something at which you won’t succeed.” […]

Columns

Bernardo Bertolucci’s ‘Last Tango In Paris’

I fell in love with Last Tango in Paris in the summer of 1973 when I was 20 years old. But now, decades later, I’m sorry to say I’ve fallen out of love with the film much as one eventually discovers that Old Spice aftershave (and the guy who wore it) wasn’t that cool after all. […]

Columns

Elia Kazan’s ‘East of Eden’

I grew up at the movies. I lived in a neighborhood where most of the children were younger than I was, and therefore I had few friends my own age. I spent my time reading and going to the movies. These pursuits were my companions. […]