Rarely viewed as an 'actor's director,' Malick has nevertheless brought out some great work
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9. Sissy Spacek, “Badlands” (1973)
Malick began experimenting with narration from the beginning, juxtaposing the lofty romantic thoughts of 15-year-old Holly Sargis with the grisly visual fallout of her life on the run with a sociopath as empty as she is in Malick’s first film, “Badlands.” Holly was surely a challenging persona to translate to the screen, and Sissy Spacek, in just her second fleshed-out role on screen, with that soft, unassuming Texas accent, took to it like a duck to water. In some ways, her detached amorality makes for a character as unsettling as co-star Martin Sheen’s cold-blooded ne’er-do-well.