I am admittedly a bit of novice when it comes to the late actor-director, but I have seen “Shadows,” and while I did not adore it, it was easy to see its influence, and why it made such a seismic impact.
Here is a great article from 2009 about the film, and how it changed American cinema forever. As author Elbert Ventura puts it:
“Cassavetes’ movie not only anticipated Mean Streets, Stranger Than Paradise, She’s Gotta Have It, and Slacker, among countless others — it helped will them into being. As Martin Scorsese noted, after Shadows, there were ‘no more excuses’ for aspiring filmmakers: ‘If he could do it, so could we!’”