With her first and only feature film—a hard-luck drama she wrote, directed, and starred
in—Barbara Loden turned in a groundbreaking work of American independent cinema,
bringing to life a kind of character seldom seen on-screen. Set amid a soot-choked
Pennsylvania landscape, and shot in an intensely intimate vérité style, the film takes up
with distant and soft-spoken Wanda (Loden), who has left her husband, lost custody of
her children, and now finds herself alone, drifting between dingy bars and motels, and
callously mistreated by a series of men—including a bank robber who ropes her into
his next criminal scheme. A rarely seen masterpiece that has nonetheless exerted an
outsize influence on generations of artists and filmmakers, Wanda is a compassionate
and wrenching portrait of a woman stranded on society’s margins.
Restored by UCLA Film & Television Archive. Restoration funding provided by The Film Foundation and GUCCI.
With his lush and sensual visuals, pitch-perfect soundtracks, and soulful romanticism, Wong Kar Wai has established himself as one of the defining auteurs of contemporary cinema.
“No one sees anything. Ever. They watch, but they don’t understand.” So observes Connie Nielsen in Olivier Assayas’s hallucinatory, globe-spanning Demonlover, a postmodern neonoir thriller and media critique in which nothing—not even the film itself—is what it appears to be.
DCP, Blu-ray, DVD
An intoxicating, time-bending experience bathed in the golden glow of oil lamps and wreathed in an opium haze, Hou Hsiao-hsien’s gorgeous period reverie traces the romantic intrigue, jealousies, and tensions swirling around a late 19th century Shanghai brothel, where the courtesans live confined to a gilded cage, ensconced in opulent splendor yet forced to work to buy back their freedom.