WE NEED YOUR HELP!

We have started a Patreon page with the hopes that some of our followers would be willing to donate to keep DVDBeaver alive. We are a small niche, so your generosity is vital to our existence.

To those that are unfamiliar, Patreon is a secure/verified third-party service where users can agree to a monthly donation via credit card or PayPal by clicking the button below.

 


 

 

Search DVDBeaver

S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

 

Directed by Barbara Loden
USA 1970

 

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, where she falls prey to a series of callous men—including a bank robber who ropes her into his next criminal scheme. An until now difficult-to-see 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.

***

Actress/filmmaker Barbara Loden both directs and stars in the stark little character study Wanda. She plays a girl from a remote mining town, timidly searching for security and love in the big city. After several desultory and abusive relationships, Wanda is "saved" by Dennis (Michael Higgins), who turns out to be a petty crook. Stylistically, Wanda is spare, lean, and understated -- on every level. Loden originally shot the film on 16 mm, then blew it up to 35 for arthouse showings.

Excerpt from B+N located HERE

Posters

Theatrical Release: September 7th, 1970 (Venice Films Festival)

Reviews                                                                                                       More Reviews                                                                                       DVD Reviews

 

Review: Criterion - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

Box Cover

CLICK to order from:

    

Distribution Criterion Spine #965 - Region 'A' - Blu-ray
Runtime 1:43:15.189        
Video

1.37:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 48,632,371,190 bytes

Feature: 31,134,885,888 bytes

Video Bitrate: 36.08 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.

Bitrate Blu-ray:

Audio

LPCM Audio English 1152 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 1152 kbps / 24-bit

Subtitles English (SDH), None
Features Release Information:
Studio:
Criterion

 

1.37:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 48,632,371,190 bytes

Feature: 31,134,885,888 bytes

Video Bitrate: 36.08 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Edition Details:

I Am Wanda, an hour-long documentary by Katja Raganelli featuring an interview with director Barbara Loden filmed in 1980 (1:02:20)
Audio recording of Loden speaking to students at the American Film Institute in 1971 (01:01:43)
Segment from a 1971 episode of The Dick Cavett Show featuring Loden (13:47)
The Frontier Experience (1975), a short educational film about a pioneer woman’s struggle to survive, directed by and starring Loden (25:21)
Trailer (01:35)
PLUS: An essay by film critic Amy Taubin


Blu-ray Release Date:
March 19th, 2019
Transparent Blu-ray Case

Chapters 20

 

 

Comments:

NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were taken directly from the Blu-ray disc.

Criterion's Wanda Blu-ray is advertised as a "New 2K digital restoration by the UCLA Film & Television Archive, The Film Foundation, and Gucci" and has been preserved from the original 16mm color reversal a/b rolls, the original 16mm optical track, and an original 35mm release print. Digital restoration has been conducted on selected sequences to repair damage to the source elements. In keeping with the film's low budget, certain production artifacts have been left intact. The 35mm preservation elements restore Wanda's original sound mix and shooting aspect ratio. The restoration was completed 2010. This about sums up the image - on a dual-layered Blu-ray with a max'ed out bitrate; true to its low-budget roots, with the best transfer they could achieve with their resources. Interiors can look greenish. Grain levels are somewhat heavy and thick but this is true of the film stock used. Colors and contrast levels are strong, with only the occasional dip in quality (a shot at the bank vault comes to mind).

Criterion have included the uncompressed monaural soundtrack in a linear PCM 1.0 24-bit track. Given the low-budget of the film, the soundtrack sounds surprisingly coherent, with audible dialogue and sound effects. The sounds of the factories, mines, and city streets sound appropriately grimy and contrast the quieter moments in bedrooms. There is no score to this film, adding to its' vérité style. There are optional English subtitles on this Region 'A'
Blu-ray.

Criterion have included an hour-long 1980 documentary by Katja Raganelli, featuring an interview with Wanda director Barbara Loden and brief interviews with cinematographer Nicholas T. Proferes and acting teacher Paul Mann. Also included here is a 14-minute segment from "The Dick Cavett Show" featuring a guest appearance by director Barbara Loden, promoting Wanda. It aired March 4, 1971. Another welcome inclusion on this Blu-ray is an audio recording from April 2,1971, of director Barbara Loden speaking to students about the challenges of making one's first film, as part of the Harold Lloyd Master Seminar series at the American Film Institute. Criterion also include a 1975 half-hour educational film about a pioneer woman struggling to survive with her family on the Kansas prairie. Barbara Loden directed and stars in this film. There is also a booklet featuring an essay by film critic Amy Taubin and the new cover is thanks to Eric Skillman.

Wanda was Barbara Loden's sole feature as a director. She also wrote the film, and it is a tragic modern, almost picaresque take on America in the 70s, with Loden in the starring role almost always held by a man. It is reminiscent of Herzog's Stroszek or Rafelson's Five Easy Pieces (which was also a film from 1970). The film was shot by Nicholas T. Proferes, who also shot Elia Kazan's "The Visitors". Though some may find this film somewhat of a slog, it is worth seeing through to the end, and it is a shame that Loden never directed another feature film. An interesting
Blu-ray addition to the Criterion Collection.

Colin Zavitz

 


Menus / Extras

 


CLICK EACH BLU-RAY CAPTURE TO SEE ALL IMAGES IN FULL 1920X1080 RESOLUTION

 

 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


  

 

Box Cover

CLICK to order from:

    

Distribution Criterion Spine #965 - Region 'A' - Blu-ray


 


 

Search DVDBeaver

S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

 

Hit Counter

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

DONATIONS Keep DVDBeaver alive:

 CLICK PayPal logo to donate!

Gary Tooze

Thank You!