"The sad fact is that the movie business tends to drum the freshness out of talent. The longer careers go on, the more conscious directors become of their own themes, and the more that feeds back into the work, swelling and distorting it. The opportunities to slip your own leash get further and further apart. Close Encounters of the Third Kind is is many ways the superior film to E.T. because it is the last film Spielberg made before becoming aware of what “Spielbergian” meant: it was all being mapped out for the first time. Badlands is the only Terrence Malick film that deserves the term “masterpiece” precisely because a masterpiece is what the others strive to be; they are merely faux-naif, where Badlands has the quality of genuine innocence."
— Tom Shone