When Linda Manz was chosen to play a young girl in Terrence Malick’s 1978 film Days of Heaven, the role was small. But while editing the film, Malick was so impressed with Manz that he asked her for a voice-over narration—improvised, no less. “I just watched the movie and rambled on,” Manz said years later. “They took whatever dialogue they liked.” The film launched her career, which was as brief and spare as it was beloved. Over two decades, Manz’s acting credits added up to a mere eight movies, plus one televised movie, and two television shows. No matter, she had a cult following. Manz died in 2020 at the age of 58. In Los Angeles, the American Cinematheque theaters remember her with a retrospective of her films, among them Days of Heaven, The Wanderers (1979), Out of the Blue (1980), and Gummo (1997). —J.D.