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Poster for Wanda


Director: Barbara Loden Run Time: 102 min. Format: 35mm Rating: R Release Year: 1970

Starring: Barbara Loden, Dorothy Shupenes, Michael Higgins, Peter Shupenes

Wanda is part of the VICE Presents: The Film Foundation Screening Series at Nitehawk Cinema. A small town housewife abandons her family, frequents seedy bars and motels until going on the run with a small-time criminal.

Barbara Loden is the writer, director, and star in her first and only film, Wanda. Set in the anthracite coal region of eastern Pennsylvania, despondent housewife Wanda attempts to escape her abusive existence by abandoning her husband and children. Adrift, she drinks excessively in an attempt to drown out her problems and goes home with random men to have a roof over her head, when one day she encounters Norman Dennis in a bar…as he’s robbing it. Setting out on the road with Norman, Wanda doesn’t become a symbol for a new feminist woman but, rather, absorbs herself into a newly destructive life. 

Critically loved but rarely seen, Wanda is an emotional road trip film with an improvisational and meditative style. In fact, it was nearly destroyed and lost forever so please join us in a very special presentation celebrating the restoration of important and nearly forgotten classic film.

WANDA (1970, dir. Barbara Loden)
Restored by UCLA Film & Television Archive. Restoration funding provided by Gucci and The Film Foundation.

Print courtesy of the Academy Film Archive and Marco Joachim.