Wanda ★★★★★

Barbara Loden did a movie back in 1970. She wrote it, directed it and starred in it. It's the story of Wanda. Loden had some success as an actress and married legendary director Elia Kazan. Maybe her real life mirrored the film to some degrees. A neglected housewife that goes off on a harrowing road to nowhere, no plan, no money, she's questioning everything and everyone involved in her life. Things get crazier when she hooks up with a dangerous petty crook. This is like a Casavettes film. Same natural settings and performances. The last 20 minutes are gonna-need-a-Xanax-time. A shame that actress Loden never got much acclaim after it debuted. Even sadder that she died 10 years later at just 48 years old. An essential, important American film.