clyde-bonnie-movie

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bonnie and clyde

BONNIE AND CLYDE (1967)

Arthur Penn directed young rising stars Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway in this stylish and memorable retelling of the infamous depression-era bank robbers Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow. Standard-setting for violence and sexuality in its day, Bonnie and Clyde was criticized for its glamorization of crime, but beneath its flash and atmospherics the viewer will find solid acting and compelling story-telling.

The top drawer cast includes: Warren Beatty, Faye Dunaway, Michael J. Pollard, Gene Hackman, Estelle Parsons, Denver Pyle, Gene Wilder, and Dub Taylor.

Ten Oscar nominations; two wins (Best Supporting Actress and Cinematography).

BONNIE AND CLYDE was nominated for the Best Picture award.

Director Arthur Penn's, "Bonnie and Clyde," is a powerful, unforgettable look at the criminally exciting life and tragic fate of a criminal couple.

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The basic story, details the life and times of two 1930's murderous, bank robbing criminals, Bonnie Parker (Faye Dunaway) and Clyde Barrow (Warren Beatty), who terrorized small, Midwest towns, falling in love along the way. This out of control, self-absorbed couple, with the arrogance of youth, have a blast on their crime spree, stealing, killing, running, playing hard and loving each other, oblivious to the reality of the possibility that they may die, living this risky lifestyle. Though it was fun at first, their string of robberies carries them towards their end, as law enforcement slowly closes in.

The screenplay is written to make the audience sympathetic to these characters, despite their cold-blooded killing record. The screenplay leaves out the brutal killing of two police motorcycle officers done in real life by Bonny and Clyde, because it wouldn't fit well into the script. It tries to show them as multi-dimensional people, giving insights to their personalities, showing them to be not just the barbarians that their behavior painted them out to be.

Beatty and Dunaway make a mighty attractive pair of criminals, each offering a fine portrayal of their characters. The romantic/sexual nature deliberately adds to the charm and mystique of their on screen relationship. This film elevated Beatty's status and made Dunaway a star.

The film was extremely popular, but also very controversial. Some critics objected to the film's violence, particularly the very bloody ending. Some objected to the sympathetic portrayal of these criminals. My favorite scene IS the last, although it's not for the faint hearted.

The film won three Oscars: for Cinematographer, Burnett Guffey, Supporting Actress, Estelle Parsons, and screenwriters, David Newman and Robert Benton. Robert Towne was supposedly called in for a highly paid, if uncredited script rewrite.

If you enjoyed BONNIE AND CLYDE you may like BUGSY,
GOODFELLAS, CASINO, UNFORGIVEN, NETWORK, CARLITO'S WAY, SCARFACE, NIGHT MOVES, THE GETAWAY, THELMA AND LOUISE, and/or LITTLE BIG MAN.