Wyoming, early 1900s. Butch Cassidy and The Sundance Kid are the leaders of a band of outlaws. After a train robbery goes wrong they find themselves on the run with a posse hard on their heels. Their solution - escape to Bolivia.
George Roy Hill
Brick Pollitt (Paul Newman), an alcoholic ex-football player, drinks his days away and resists the affections of his wife, Maggie (Dame Elizabeth Taylor). His reunion with his father, Big Daddy (Burl Ives), who is dying of cancer, jogs a host of memories and revelations for both father and son.
1934. Young adults Bonnie Parker, a waitress, and Clyde Barrow, a criminal just released from prison, are immediately attracted to what the other represents for their life when they meet by chance in West Dallas, Texas. Bonnie is fascinated with Clyde's criminal past, and his matter-of-factness and bravado in talking about it. Clyde sees in Bonnie someone sympatico to his goals in life. Although attracted to each other physically, a sexual relationship between the two has a few obstacles to happen. Regardless, they decide to join forces to embark on a life of crime, holding up whatever establishments, primarily banks, to make money and to have fun. They don't plan on hurting anyone physically or killing anyone despite wielding loaded guns. They amass a small gang of willing accomplices, including C.W. Moss, a mechanic to fix whatever cars they steal which is important especially for their getaways, and Buck Barrow, one of Clyde's older brothers. The only reluctant tag-along is Buck's ...Written by
Included among the American Film Institute's 1998 list of the Top 100 Greatest American Movies. See more »
When Buck yells, "Shut up!" at Blanche in the shoot-out scene, Gene Hackman's mouth doesn't move. See more »
You know Clyde, I read about you all in the papers, and I just get scared.
Now Ms. Parker, don't you believe what you read in all them newspapers. That's the law talkin' there. They want us to look big so they gonna look big when they catch us. And they ain't gonna catch us. 'Cause I'm even better at runnin' than I am at robbin' banks! Shoot, if we'd done half that stuff they said we'd done in that paper, we'd be millionaires by now, wouldn't we? But Ms. Parker, this here's the way we know best...
[...] See more »
Several scenes (most of which can be read in the film's script) were shot but removed or altered for various reasons, either for content or to keep the running time under two hours. These scenes are, in chronological order:
The earliest versions had Clyde shooting and killing the butcher during their fight. This was toned down to Clyde just shooting the butcher, and finally just pistol whipping him. In real life, speculation still exists as to whether Clyde Barrow actually committed the crime this is based on; although his photo was picked out, the method in which it was executed doesn't fit his MO. In the final cut, there is a brief jump in the film during the fight, where it was spliced from the original, more graphic conclusion.
After picking up C.W., Clyde and Bonnie take him to a diner where they plan their next robbery.
After Clyde kills Doyle Johnson (the man on the running board), Bonnie talks with CW in the bathroom while Clyde cleans his guns and laments his actions. In the bathroom CW bathes and Bonnie attempts to seduce him, but changes her mind when CW proves to be less than romantic material. A still from this scene-- Bonnie wearing a slip and Clyde's hat-- can be seen on the DVD.
A longer scene of Buck and Blanche's approach to the motor lodge. Buck is singing Bible hymns and Blanche scolds him for bringing her to see Clyde.
A longer version of Bonnie's visit home; she sits in the car and her sister gives her a perm (a portion of this-- Bonnie on the running board getting her hair put up-- exists in the final film).
A very long sequence in which Bonnie and Clyde get drunk and come to terms with their impending death. They trash their room and rip out the mattress from their bed, turning it into a makeshift coffin. They then put on their best clothes and put makeup on each other so they can see what they will look like when they're dead. The scene concludes with Bonnie and Clyde dancing around CW by candlelight and chanting "The Hearse Song."
During the Platte City raid, C.W. uses a machine gun to attack the armored car instead of grenades.
The final shootout, in its earliest form, was done entirely with still photos shown over sounds of machine gun fire and screams, and we never actually saw Bonnie or Clyde dead. The movie ended with the two farmers running towards the car while "Foggy Mountain Breakdown" Played in the background.
The movie that made it okay to sympathize with murderers...
First of all, let me say that I'm appalled by the real life Bonnie and Clyde. They were two psychopathic thrill killers from Dallas who had a special hatred for law enforcement officers. I must admit that I do feel sorry for the way they were killed, but like the old axiom goes, "If you live by the sword, you die by the sword."
That said, the movie "Bonnie and Clyde" was a groundbreaking film. It was the first time that we the audience were allowed inside the killers minds, and could see what made them tick. This is perhaps the first film that takes a somewhat objective look at crime; we the audience don't have "FBI Seal of Approval" morality shoved down our throats, but we still can tell by the actions of the characters that they are evil, whether they know it or not.
The story is of two Texas young adults who, bored with their lives and the prospects of going nowhere in the world, decide to live out their dreams of stardom by going on a crime spree. They fancy themselves a sort of "Romeo and Juliet" couple, and think of their robberies as harmless fun. They start out small by knocking over grocery stores and gas stations, but soon graduate to banks when they need more money to accommodate their lifestyle. Soon they have a simple minded gas clerk named C.W. and Clyde's brother and wife in the gang, and the duo goes down into history.
Then the fun and games are over. With law enforcement officials now looking for Bonnie and Clyde, they become targets of bounty hunters, unethical cops and other greedy persons who wish to make a name for themselves, and they lose a part of their childish innocence as the escalation of their crimes makes them become more and more violent. When death finally comes for Bonnie and Clyde, it comes with a vengeance.
Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway have never been better. Beatty, who plays Clyde Barrow as an impotent, ne'er do well country boy who seems to be sowing his wild oats, is in top form. He makes Clyde likable, with a goofy smile perpetually pasted on his face, even when sticking up a bank with two guns in his hands. Dunaway is the ultimate femme fatale as Bonnie Parker, a sweet natured Southern belle who likes the feel of a .38 in her hands as she politely asks for all the money. It's absurd, it's unrealistic, but hey, it's Hollywood. And the film works.
But most importantly, Bonnie and Clyde are in love. It's a kind of love that only few films afterward have been able to equal. There is a genuine feeling of giddy romance between the two no matter what the scene, be it a bank robbery or family get-together away from the reaches of society.
Arthur Penn was obviously a man on a mission when he directed this film. You could sense with every frame that he knew of the importance of this movie; a cinematic masterpiece that dares to make its audience evoke pathos for what would have been banned just a few years earlier.
The finale is still to this day a triumph of audience manipulation. The two bandits, finally captured and unable to escape, are dealt with in a fashion that will haunt you days after viewing. It's sad, it's disgusting, but it brings closure to the lives of two individuals whose works and existence could not be tolerated by the powers that be.
The movie "Bonnie and Clyde" inspired a generation of film makers to look at cinema in a different light. Actions movies were allowed to be funny from this point; funny movies could get away with violence. On the negative side, however, the film changed the morals of Hollywood by allowing murder to be dealt with in such a nonchalant fashion.
Sure, Claude is obviously shaken up after his first kill, as are Bonnie and C.W., but from that point on violence against law officials is no longer a problem. The police in this film are rather like the way gangsters used to be portrayed; a collection of stupid, soulless individuals who only want to ruin Bonnie and Clyde's fun.
In the end, this in an excellent film about Depression era gangsters. Most ironically, however, is that it seems dedicated to the two real life robbers who don't deserve such an honor of having a film legacy created in their names.
10 stars. Innovative, fresh, and hey, it helped pave the way for "Dillinger", my favorite movie in the robber-gangster genre.
99 of 156 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this