|Bonnie & Clyde [VHS]
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One of the landmark films of the 1960s, Bonnie and Clyde changed the course of American cinema. Setting a milestone for screen violence that paved the way for Sam Peckinpah's The Wild Bunch, this exercise in mythologized biography should not be labeled as a bloodbath; as critic Pauline Kael wrote in her rave review, "it's the absence of sadism that throws the audience off balance." The film is more of a poetic ode to the Great Depression, starring the dream team of Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway as the titular antiheroes, who barrel across the South and Midwest robbing banks with Clyde's brother Buck (Gene Hackman), Buck's frantic wife Blanche (Estelle Parsons), and their faithful accomplice C.W. Moss (the inimitable Michael J. Pollard). Bonnie and Clyde is an unforgettable classic that has lost none of its power since the 1967 release. --Jeff Shannon
This is a sad movie--not for the bad things that happen in the movie but because this is a story about two young people who treated life in general as a big joke. They acted nonchalantly and carelessly about their own lives, and they killed with reckless abandon. This movie is also sad because it appears that the "good guys" who wanted justice were almost glory seekers who just wanted to say that they shot Bonnie and Clyde.
Movies like this are good to watch sometimes, I think. One can be reminded that we really do have things good. I do not think that Bonnie and Clyde were glorified in this film, and in the end they got what they truly deserved.
There were two scenes that were intensely violent and caused me to shudder, yet they were not violent just to be violent. I have seen pictures of the car that Bonnie and Clyde were shot in, and it appears as if the movie is pretty accurate in that regard.
Watch this movie as a warning what young people are capable of in the desire for thrills and glory--and be thankful! ...more info
- A very welcome Blu-ray title
Warner Bros. has done an excellent job of remastering the video of this 1960s classic. Very clean, very bright, and nice colors. On a high definition video scale of 1 to 5, I would rank this as a 4 because while the print used is incredibly sharp for most of it, there are some scenes that the image is a bit soft. This is understandable, though, because the film was not made on a huge budget, and as mentioned in the documentary, Warren Beatty was going for a non-studio look by utilizing natural light whenever possible.
The audio is in mono due to the original sound elements being no longer available, but the sound is very clear..
The Blu-ray has all of the Ultimate DVD features in standard definition. The new three-part hour-long documentary on the making of the film is the best, and features interview with Beatty, Faye Dunaway, Gene Hackman, Michael J. Pollard, and Estelle Parsons, plus various behind-the-scenes personnel, including director Arthur Penn. There are also two rediscovered scenes that had been cut from the film (no audio survives, but there are subtitles) and wardrobe tests for Beatty. There is also an interesting History Channel program about the real-life Bonnie and Clyde.
The Blu-ray version has the 34-page book as the Blu-ray's packaging (the inside cover is plastic holding for the Blu-ray disc). I know that WB will be releasing other books like this for some future releases, but I truly regret to say I was unimpressed by the book. It consisted mostly of photos, ads , and bios. There was very little text about the making of the film, but I guess they knew the documentary would take care of that. Still, overall, I felt the book was very light, content-wise.
The only differences between this and the standard DVD Ultimate edition (other than the high definition video on the Blu-ray, of course) are minor with the Ultimate Edition standard DVD set having a pressbook reproduction and a mail-in offer for a poster.
I would rate this as a must-have....more info
- Perennial Classic
Director Arthur Penn enables the audience to connect with Bonnie and Clyde without deifying these two outlaws. He keeps all of the principle players' performances just short of reality but never permits their characters to drift into farce. This approach, along with the kinetic energy infused by Penn's direction, are key elements in the film's success. The movie becomes a fable. We can spend time with these characters without admiring them. There is a subtle buffoonery to Clyde's conman and Bonnie's naivete. An example of this is the scene where Clyde teaches Bonnie to shoot a gun....her blowing into the smoking barrel of the just discharged pistol...the approach of the dispossessed farmer and the outlaws' subsequent dialogue with him, etc. The scene is the essence of the film's tenor. I wonder if most people really appreciate the perfect balance Penn achieves with this film. He manages to lace the movie with humor without trivializing the malignant conduct of the outlaws. He allows us to feel all of the emotion of a sober drama without making the film absolutely dramatic and portraying Bonnie and Clyde as victims. Arthur Penn also gives us a feel of at least our romanticized impression of early 1930s America. I never grow tired of watching "Bonnie and Clyde." Read Byran Burrough's superb new book "Public Enemies" and then watch this film. A harrowing, sad, deadly, fascinating time was this aspect of early 1930s America....the reign of the Mid-Western bandits. ...more info
- Beautiful, but misses a lot of the real story
As our nation teeters on the brink of what may be another Great Depression, it's poignant to look back on the last one. This movie was visually beautiful and artistically ground breaking, but the real story was much richer and darker.
They did not meet when Clyde was trying to steal Emma Parker's car; they met at a gathering of mutual friends and relatives when Bonnie was out of work.
Clyde was not gay or impotent, but an accomplished Cassanova who had serveral girlfriends, some serious, before he ever met Bonnie. Everyone who actually knew him testified to that. Also, banks were not his favorite target; convenience stores, gas stations, drug stores, and fruit stands were more his speed. He kept moving like a haunted man; when the owner got the death car back, she found he'd averaged 300 miles a day on the odometer. He was brutalized and sodomized at Eastham prison farm, and this experience gave him a mission he eventually carried out (which is not depicted in the movie): to go back and free as many cons as he could. It was the killing of a prison guard by a man he freed that set in motion the task force that would eventually ambush him. They never kidnapped or humiliated Frank Hammer, he never saw them till the day he helped kill them.
Clyde's gang was much bigger than the movie showed. C. W. Moss was a composite of W. D. Jones (a teenager who didn't drive as much as the movie showed), and Henry Methvin. Henry and his family would eventually betray Bonnie and Clyde in return for a plea bargain. We also don't see Raymond Hamilton, the gentleman bandit, or his unpopular girlfriend Mary O'Dare. It was she who was obnoxious and demanded a share of the loot, not Blanche. Hamilton was eventually captured and went to the Texas electric chair at 21, right after Joe Palmer who had killed the guard at Eastham. Ralph Fults, Floyd Hamilton, and many others are not mentioned in the movie. We also don't see Bonnie's limp from a horrendous burn in a car accident.
Blanche Barrow was much younger, slimmer, prettier and more charming than Estelle Parsons played her. She did wear riding breaches towards the end. In her memoirs there were two occasions where she pointed out to Clyde that people were acting funny, but he brushed her off. The gunfights at Platte City and Joplin could have been evaded if they'd listened to her. When Buck and Blanche went to meet Clyde, Buck had a full pardon and a paid-for car. If they'd left one day sooner, they could have died of old age together. Buck did not die at Dexfield, but five days later in a hospital, of infection following surgery. Blanche did time in prison where she wrote her memoirs, was eventually parolled, and remarried.
After Clyde got out of prison, and he did chop off two toes to escape Eastham farm duty, the Dallas police hassled him so frequently he couldn't hold a job. Clyde, Bonnie, Buck, and Blanche were slim, tiny people, and Clyde felt that this might be why there was so much violence around them, because they weren't taken seriously. Also there was no mention of the rabbit Bonnie got for her mother and carried around for a time. ("Keep him away from the police - he's been in two gunfights" when she handed him over)
The movie also didn't include the ghastly postmortem exam and embalming, the mobs at the funerals, and the harboring trial where even the moms got jail time. Bonnie's sister who nursed her burns, Henry Barrow the hard working ex-share cropper, and many other key figures were also absent. Faye Dunnaway did not look or dress at all like Bonnie. All in all, a warning of how NOT to cope with hard times.
My Life With Bonnie And Clyde Running With Bonnie and Clyde: The Ten Fast Years of Ralph Fults Depression Desperado: The Chronicle of Raymond Hamilton The Family Story of Bonnie and Clyde The true story of Bonnie & Clyde, (A Signet book, P-3437) Bonnie and Clyde: A Twenty-First-Century Update...more info
- Newly Remastered and Rereleased
"Bonnie and Clyde"
Newly Remastered and Rereleased
There is one great line about "Bonnie and Clyde"--"They're young...they're in love...they rob banks" and they kill people--lots of people.
"Bonnie and Clyde" is a brilliantly made, groundbreaking film that chronicles the lives of two of America's most infamous criminals. It disappeared from video shelves a few years ago but today, March 25, 2008, it is back and more glorious then ever in a new digitally remastered DVD with lots of extras/
"Bonnie and Clyde', aside from being entertaining, is an important 1960's landmark film because of its violent ending which helped to end the old Hayes code and because it shaped the image of the anti-hero. It was condemned by many at the outset and praised by many others. It superbly recreates America of the Depression Age.
Faye Dunaway is Bonnie and Warren Beatty is Clyde and they are wonderful. They are joined by Gene Hackman, Michael J. Pollard and Estelle Parsons who all give brilliant performances.
The film is innovative and it deals admirably with the reality and the mythology of the Barrow gang. As the film links violence with comedy, it hits us on two different levels. The final scene is choreography of murder which has yet to be copied. It is a fascinating "danse macabre".
And, of course, there is sex. There are hints of homosexuality and lots of sexual imagery and the one scene of oral sex is unique to movies made when this one was.
The film is absolutely amazing and is rated by many as one of the best movies ever made. I have to agree.
The DVD release comes with three options--just the movie, a two disc set and the deluxe special edition which I have. The extras include a copy of the press book, a book of photos, deleted scenes, three documentaries and Warren Beatty's wardrobe tests. This edition is a definite keeper.
- The most classic of classic movies
This is my favorite film of all time, and for good reason. Watching it again today, I realized that there is not one scene in Bonnie and Clyde that could have been cut. Every single scene is essential for character or plot development. This movie does not spell things out for you; it shows you things and lets you draw your own conclusions. Faye Dunaway and Warren Beatty's performances are simply incredible; so are everyone else's. There is not one bad actor in the batch, not even among the extras. The film has an authentic look: apparently it was filmed in towns where the real Bonnie and Clyde visited some thirty years earlier. Criminals can feel and love and laugh and hurt too, just as much as any law-abiding person, and this movie will remind you of that. You will be as frustrated with Blanche as Bonnie is; you will grin tolerantly at Buck's milk joke; you will gasp at the carnage and feel your heart soften at the naive sweetness of C.W. Moss.
This is a must-see movie for anyone who enjoys good acting, plotting, filming, editing, scripting, music and scenery. One of the best films ever made....more info
- kind of slow.they need to speed it up.
this movie was so bloody at the end,they made the r rating!this was the first movie they ever rated r.the flaw is its very slow as compared to todays action packed extravagansas.a modern day version would be awesome.actualy,there is teenage bonnie and kleptomaniac clyde.its better than this one.everbody knows the story.theres these 2 lovers bonnie parker and clyde barrow.they ride around robbing banks.they become something of folk heros.the feds used a dastardly trick to lure them to their slaughter.lex luthor from superman is in it.oh yeah hes this jewish guy.......................gene hackman?its considered a classic.it is very much true.it was not exact with any books i read,but the important stuff goes down the same way.its called a classic but ive turned it off a number of times.legend in its time,i guess.the end scene is intense.the superman movies were better as mostly every hackman movie sucks. ...more info
- "Reach for the sky!" sweet-talkin' Clyde would holler...
"Bonnie and Clyde" is the correct answer to the trivia question: "What movie did CBS-TV air opposite the Billie Jean King/Bobby Riggs 'Battle of the Sexes' tennis match?" (King won, BTW.) "The Ballad of Bonnie and Clyde" was also a 1967 Top 40 pop hit for Little Georgie Fame (on EPIC records and 8-track tapes!).
Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow lived fast and died young and violently. Their final moments are the stuff of legend, and for anyone doubting the "hail of lead" scenario, I can only say that a LONG time ago, I saw the actual car that Parker was in essence executed in while Barrow caught a few dozen bullets as he stood nearby. You would not believe the number of holes that machine sustained!
This is one bloody darn picture, and not just at the end. For example, the fate of one Barrow gang member (Clyde's older brother Buck) shouldn't happen to a dog, as the saying goes. Every principal cast member gives here a stand-out performance. The story of a free-wheeling bank robber couple is fast-moving and at times positively gruesome. While director Arthur Penn does allow the blood to flow freely, he also chooses to gloss over the issue of Clyde's sexuality. A minor point.
Also from director Arthur Penn:
THE LEFT HANDED GUN (1958) is another take on the Billy the Kid story. With Paul Newman as William Bonney. Adapted from the Gore Vidal play.
THE CHASE (1966) is a prison break story set in a small Southern town. Stars Marlon Brando, Jane Fonda and Robert Redford.
THE MISSOURI BREAKS (1976) is a fine western featuring Jack Nicholson, Marlon Brando and Randy Quaid.
Parenthetical number preceding title is a 1 to 10 viewer poll rating found at a film resource website.
(8.1) Bonnie and Clyde (1967) - Warren Beatty/Faye Dunaway/Michael J. Pollard/Gene Hackman/Estelle Parsons/Denver Pyle/Dub Taylor/Evans Evans/Gene Wilder...more info
- All the entertainment you'll ever need
Faye Dunaway and Warren Beatty team up to play the legends BONNIE AND CLYDE. Faye Dunaway is the hottest she'll ever be. Pure entertainment, it never stops, you can taste the dust they kick up as they speed away from the cops and banks, memorable characters and memorable sequences, all the entertainment you'll ever need....more info
- a must have for the film buffs
A bargain at twice the price. This is a preview of the renegade filmmaking that would dominate the 70's and it is a must see. The extras are wonderful but it is the film itself that ranks as a masterpiece. Warren Beatty's first production effort shows he wasn't just a pretty boy anymore. ...more info
- A Great Movie...But....
As a movie alone it's great.Plenty of action. But if your looking for true facts about Bonnie & Clyde, go buy a biography dvd. I read a book that was written by Buck Barrow's wife Blanche - called "My Life With Bonnie & Clyde" [ an excellent read ], and in it she says that the movie is anything but the true story of Bonnie & Clyde...and it is so vey inaccurate historically. As for an example, the scene where B & C capture Texas Ranger Frank Hamer and humiliate him...Blanche says that never happened. In fact, the only time Hamer ever saw B & C was when he and 5 other law men killed them in Louisiana. But, I guess thats Hollywood for ya. Always stretching the truth to the max. ...more info
- once-controversial film
I bought this when I was collecting Gene Wilder movies. Turns out, it was his film debut. I hadn't seen this before, but I do remember all the controversy around it when it first came out. Funny, it seems so tame now.
Warren Beatty is Clyde Barrow; Faye Dunaway is Bonnie Parker. They rob banks during the depression, and they're joined by Clyde's brother Buck (Gene Hackman), Buck's wife Blanche (Estelle Parsons), and a young gas station attendant (Michael J. Pollard) they recruit as a driver.
They go on their merry way, with preacher's daughter Blanche's protests their only problem, until things start to catch up with them.
It's a wonderful blend of exciting action, humor, and pathos--the sort-of lovers racing gleefully toward their doom. Clyde in particular is almost innocently childlike in his self-centeredness and lack of consideration of the consequences of his actions, not to mention his ambiguous sexuality. I'm not that well-versed in evaluating acting performances, but I believed all these characters.
Which is not to say that I believe Beatty and Dunaway were just like the actual Barrow and Parker. Far from it, I'd say--rather than a portrayal of actual fact, the movie is more fiction based on the true story.
Oh, and Gene Wilder? He was wonderful as a man who's briefly caught up in the gang when they steal his car....more info
- Groundbreaking film!!
Before this film was, all violence on film was badly staged or was in black and white. Arthur Penn shows the life of Bonnie & Clyde in all its stark realism, right to it's stunning climax. Warren Beatty was just starting to become a Hollywood star and gives a great perfomance. But it's Faye Dunnaway who steals the movie with her outstanding portrayal of Bonnie. Other great performances were Gene Hackman as Clyde's brother, Buck and Estelle Parsons who garnered an Oscar as Buck's wife. This is a groundbreaking film that starts a new era in filmmaking....more info
- What was so exciting long ago and seems a bit tarnished now
This movie was a cult movie of my college years. I saw it more than one time. I was taken with it without quite understanding 'why' and was too carried away with the general enthusiasm the people around me had for the movie.
Bonnie and Clyde are 'cool'. They are outlaws with style. Warren Beatty's inarticulate toughness, and the brash beauty of Faye Dunaway are 'fire'. This is a beautiful love story, with the reluctant shy Clyde wakened to manhood by the audacious and poetry- writing Bonnie. They rob banks with the assistance of a highly entertaining crew . There are highjinks and fun and yet great tension in the gang when things go wrong.
But above all there is the violence, the violence which has its climax in the Feds finishing off Bonnie and Clyde in the famed slow- motion scene where their car is riddled with hundreds of bullets.
A great part of the spirit of the movie is the banjo-music which speeds them on their capers.
Considering this movie with the distance of years I remember a certain unease which I felt with it. Too much violence and too much celebration of violence even when the good- bad guys Bonnie and Clyde are up to it.
This is a kind of movie I am unable to enjoy now. There is too much real violence in the world. The sight of fictional violence reminds of the horrible events which transpire in the real world.
And it raises in my mind a moral question, the question of whether it is right to take pleasure in such violence even if is only violence on the screen....more info
- They're Young..They're In Love..And They Kill People!
That was the movie poster tagline for this 1930's gangster and his gun totin' moll's, "buddy" picture, set in the dustbowl depressed locales of Texas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, Kansas and Missouri, produced by a 28 year old Warren Beatty..Before "Bonnie and Clyde" was screened in 1967, Warren Beatty was a peripatetic pretty-boy with a well worn reputation as a lady-killer, working perpetually on a seemingly dead-end project, a script, with nothing tangible to show for it but continued hype and a cache of high-profile conquests; to wit: famous only for being infamous, dubious to the real players in town..He was further branded by the studio bossess, as long on looks, short on accomplishments, yet coddled by the A-list leading ladies traipsing in and out of the penthouse suite he maintained at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel..One of his lady friend advocates told her mogul/husband, you just wait, Warren's about to do something really important, it's shameful how you all underestimate him!..And that important thing was to get "Bonnie and Clyde" made into a film, as its producer..The tattered script had ricocheted around Hollywood for years, like a radio-active hot potato..The project had the moribund reputation in the industry as that French new wave cinema that will never get made, regardless of who gets involved!!..hmm..The rest is American cinematic history, since Beatty lined-up an unknown blonde beauty, Faye Dunaway as Bonnie Parker, Gene Hackman as Buck Barrow, whose next film became "The French Connection", Estelle Parsons a distinguished stage actress as Blanche Barrow, and then netted Arthur Penn to direct..Naturally, Beatty cast himself as Clyde Barrow, the film's central anti-hero..The bases were loaded..All Jack Warner at Warner Brothers Studio could do was greenlight the picture, with caveats, a razor-thin budget, and an impossibly tight shooting schedule.."Bonnie and Clyde" cost Warner Bros. $2,500,000 to shoot but gated 60 million dollars in domestic sales, the second highest grossing Warner Bros. picture at the time, that summer's runaway hit..After that, pardon the pun, Beatty was indeed a very made man!...more info
- "but it's death for bonnie and clyde"
warren beatty(who also produced) and faye dunaway star as the title charters in this still haunting movie about being poor and wanting more than you can have. b&c both fit that mold,young and looking for more action than their lives were giving them.when they met it set in motion a chain of events that would take them to places they had never been but at a steap price.
while the film starts out as just two wild kids out for a good time and even a few laughs slowly you begin to see that the "game" they are playing is getting out of hand.with clyde's brother and wife in tow along with c.w. moss(buck'clyde's brother is played by gene hackman estele parsons plays buck's shrill wife and michael j. pollard is c.w.)the gang sets out to rob banks across the soutwest. the fun turns deadly after one of their hideouts is found and a shootout takes place. a policeman is killed and now the fun becomes a fight to stay alive. from this moment on the violeance is turned up and the humor of the movie is replaced with the grim truth that the people we are watching are doomed and we can do nothing to stop it.the shootout become blood things as cops and even buck and his wife are shot. the death of buck is one of the most heart breaking death you will ever see and hackman and parsons are stuning in their last few frames of film.
being shot and badly wounded them selves, bonnie and clyde hide out at c.w.'s fathers farm, which sets up the final shootout, an all out bloodbath that is shot in slow motion and leaves you just limp with saddness of the two lives that wre wasted .
a true classic and should be in everyones collection...more info
- Dazzling direction , glorious cast : a great artistic issue
Amazing and kinetic script since the first shots . The special rapport and the essential sexual chemistry between Warren Beaty and Faye Dunaway was instantaneous . Since the erotic sequence she goes down in the upstairs to make her first appearance is one of the sexiest scenes ever filmed .
The plot deals around these two outlaw lovers ; he has nothing to lose and she is opened to new experiences and therefore without any kind of restrictions , made a punch in this decade .
Artur Penn knew ensamble a essential film noir and even enriched it with smart and funny situations .
Furthermore the ending sequence is anthological and since its first release became a cult issue .
This film overthrew Faye to screen and supposed a great triumph to Artur Penn one of the icon directors in the American cinema .
- ''We Rob Banks!''
This is one of those movies that I always wish i had never seen , Solely because I envy those seeing it for the first time . In the mid 6o,s this wonderfully crafted piece blasted on to our cinema screens , blowing away all prior images of the gangster genre (For a little while at least , We still go back to Caggers ,Bogie and Eddie G , for our infusions of escapist gangsterism ) This film has a little of everything in its portrayal of irresponsible ineptitude during a period where the public were led to believe in the faultless guile and practise of these supposed matinee idols . The movie constantly reminds us of our fallabilities and we end up loving the cast for them . the early opportunities to see the futures of the fabulous ''Two Genes'' , Hackman and Wilder reveal the talent spotters skills in promoting these to to the A list as the 60.s drew to a close . for many , me included Warren Beatty was never better , how many of us then adolescent were comforted by the fallabilities portrayed here along with his glamourous aspirations which thank god few followed to its extreme one has to believe !! Faye Dunaway , well this was her zenith to on reflection and how these two slipped thru the academy,s lists remains to me a puzzle yet to be completed . This collectors piece has everything the enthusiast could hope for in a collectors edition , fabulous . if I am forced to criticise , the actual packaging is not up to region 1 standard . After all US packagiung gives so much more added value that British releases normally this package could have been designed with a clipped budget perhaps ?? get this into your shopping basket now !! ...more info
I ENJOYED THIS MOVIE. I LIKE CLASSICS. THIS IS A GOOD ONE IT STARS FAYE DUNAWAY AND WARREN BEATTY. IT IS ABOUT SOME INFAMOUS BANK ROBBERS AND THEIR TRIBULATIONS. I LIKED THIS MOVIE IT WAS GOOD I ENJOYED IT . IF YOU LIKE GANGSTER MOVIES OR BANK ROBBERY MOVIES THEN YOU WOULD DEFINITELY LIKE THIS MOVIE. THIS IS A MUST HAVE FOR ANY WARREN BEATTY FAN....more info
- Bonnie & Clyde
It's enoyable, even after seeing it years ago. The acting is a little stale, but it's worth the money, to be watched on a cold rainy night, with pop corn, in front of the fire. The cars and music are wonderful. Try to over look the error in accuracy, and remember, it's only Hollywood!...more info
- Not a bad movie, but can we get a more authentic remake?
Some of the previous reviewers have already hit upon the historical errors, how Bonnie and Clyde met, Clyde killed outside the car, the real Bonnie being a rehead, the CW Moss composite character, the fact that they never met Hammer. One point I would like to bring up and that is that the movie failed to show Clyde's weapon of choice, the BAR or Browning Automatic Rifle. Clyde used it most of the time, as a Thompson machine gun fire couldn't penetrate a car like a BAR could. A BAR was also very loud and intimidating. Clyde even cut off part of the barrel and end stock so he could wield it with ease. Why the movie failed to show this was most likely a plain lack of research by the script writers.
The real story of Bonnie and Clyde should be the next blockbuster remake....more info
- Love the photogenic quality
the photo quality of this movies blows me away - it's superb!!! Of course it helps when you have two fine actors - great movie!!!!!!!!...more info
- Upgraded "Bonnie and Clyde" looks terrific in both Blu-ray and DVD editions
"This here's Miss Bonnie Parker. I'm Clyde Barrow. We rob banks"-Clyde Barrow (Warren Beatty) "I ain't no lover boy"- Beatty as Clyde Barrow to Bonnie Parker (Faye Dunaway).
"Bonnie and Clyde" looks better than a depression era robber baron in his finest clothes. The colors pop and while the images are a bit soft at times (due to the aging of the source materials), Warner has done a stellar job of cleaning up the film making a marked improvement over the previous DVD bare bones release from over a decade ago. Packed with some extra cool extras including a multi-part documentary on the making of the film, a documentary licensed from The History Channel on the real "Bonnie and Clyde", deleted scenes (sadly without dialogue because the soundtrack is missing)and wardrobe tests, this is one of the best jobs I've seen of a 60's classic reissued on DVD and Blu-ray.
He might not have been a "lover boy" but Warren Beatty as Clyde Barrow sure is pretty to look at on screen. Playing with his image as a pin-up, Beatty and the beautiful Faye Dunaway pull off their roles as Clyde Barrow and Bonnie Parker in Arthur Penn's "Bonnie and Clyde" despite their Hollywood looks. Penn has always been an adventurous filmmaker and his work with Beatty in "Mickey One" paid off with a solid, nuanced performance from Betty where others might have let the actor get away with a less thoughtful interpretation of the role. With "Bonnie and Clyde" Penn and Beatty (producer on the project) demonstrate a keen awareness of the French New Wave (originally director Francios Truffaut was approached to direct and its rumored that Jean Luc-Goddard the infant terrible of the New Wave movement was asked as well but his changes were so radical that he was rejected as a director for the film. Truffaut's most telling influence the elimination of Clyde Barrow's bisexuality in favor of making him impotent a choice that Penn also argued for when Beatty thought about going back to the original script by David Newman and Robert Benton) which influenced some of Penn's unusual visual choices for the film. The first time we meet Bonnie Parker we see only isolated close ups of her face as she puts on her make up and Penn gradually reveals the room as something less than the elegance that we might have expected from a Hollywood thriller like "Bonnie and Clyde". "Bonnie and Clyde" is notable for a shift with much more gruesome, violent sequences that Hollywood had seen before; in fact Penn claims that the sequence where Clyde shoots the manager of a bank in the face as he tries to stop their car was the very first time that a Hollywood film showed the shooter and the victim all in the same single shot. If that is so, it's a startling change that influenced the rest of Hollywood for good and bad over the course of the next forty some years.
Penn, Beatty, screenwriters Benton & Newman (and an uncredited Robert Towne who receives a "creative consultant" credit since he couldn't claim a writing credit for his work) do take some liberties with the story of bank robbers Barrow and Parker but in the interest of the drama those liberties work creating a film that examines the characters and the world of foreclosed mortgages, depression era poor people and the wealthy who just kept getting wealthier in fine detail. Featuring stellar support from actors Gene Hackman as Clyde's brother, Gene Wilder (in his film debut), Michael J. Pollard and Estelle Parsons, "Bonnie and Clyde" has aged gracefully. Penn's brilliant visual motifs stand up surprisingly well. They draw attention to the characters and saying as much with as little dialogue as possible. Even where the facts are skirted (such as the fact that Bonnie Parker was badly burned and had to be carried most places by Clyde Barrow after a car accident), there's a logical dramatic reason for doing so.
The Blu-ray looks stunning as well but fans should be aware of the age of the film as this doesn't look quite as stunning as a more contemporary film might. Nevertheless, my jaw dropped as I haven't seen a print look THIS good even when I worked at the UCLA archives or sat through the film for the first time in one of Howard Suber's classes on film genres.
Audio sounds quite good but, again, keep in mind the original soundtrack was recorded, mixed and mastered in mono as that was the standard when this film played in theaters. Interestingly enough, fans will probably hear a better sounding version here on the DVD than when it played in theaters. Warner had so little faith in the film that it was released to drive-in's and second tier theaters initially (they also offered Beatty nearly half of the domestic gross as his fee figuring the film wouldn't make a huge amount of money. Someone at Warner probably paid with their job for such a miscalculation).
This deluxe two disc edition treats this classic with the respect it deserves; special features producer Laurent Bouzereau was called in to create the featurettes for the two disc edition demonstrating how much love Warner was willing to give the film. Bouzereau does his usual top notch job here.
"Revolution: The Making of 'Bonnie and Clyde'" is a three part documentary that covers everything from the fights that director Penn had with his cinematographer for his unusual stylistic choices to the checkered history of the film's production.
"Love and Death: The Story of Bonnie and Clyde" has been licensed from the History Channel and gives fans of the film the REAL story of the couple which is a nice contrast to the reel one were given by Penn and Beatty.
Also included are two deleted scenes which I'm surprised have survived all this time. The clips are silent as the original audio recordings from the location have been lost but there are subtitles to give fans an idea of what is going on. ***
We also get to see Warren Beatty model clothes for us in the wardrobe tests.
One of Penn's finest films (along with "Night Moves", "The Miracle Worker" and his underrated oddity "The Missouri Breaks"), "Bonnie and Clyde" looks terrific in a remastered deluxe DVD edition. Fans will positively love the clean up job done on the video and while the audio doesn't sound much improved, it sounds as good as it's ever going to get. Highly recommended.
- A landmark it is...
My wife and I had decided that we would broaden our horizons and watch some films that got critical aclaim before our birth (and beings we were born in 85 we have a lot to choose from) so the first year we chose from was 67 and the first film we watched was Bonnie and Clyde. It's refered to as the landmark film of the 60's and I see why. As the first film to recieve an R rating (which is less than a PG-13 compaired to todays standards) it was one of the first films to showcase violence with bloody results. The story (loose as it may be) follows real life outlaws Bonnie and Clyde (played by Beaty and Dunaway) as they run from the law acompanied by a auto mech. C.W. (Pollard) and Clydes brother (Hackman in a roll that should have landed him an oscar) and his unwilling wife (played by Parsons in a roll I can't believe won her an oscar!) We see as they run from the law, but moreso we see as they grow as people in their relationships with one another and we see that what first attracted them to each other is what kept them going strong...this is seen when Bonnie and Clyde are lying in bed and Bonnie asks Clyde, if he could wake up a free man with no record, what would he do? He proceeds to say that he would do things differently, but as he elaborates you can see that his plan is still to be an outlaw. Bonnie turns away, obviously dissapointed, but she gives way to a smile, because this is the man she loves, and if he were any different she may not love him. I thought, for the time, everything was top notch. You cant compare this film, at least the acting and effects, to films of today for the caliber is not there. But, for shear story and production, Bonnie and Clyde was ahead of the times and desearved the praise it recieved. Faye Dunaway was brilliant and beautiful, and while Warren came off a bit stiff sometimes and Parsons was downright dreadfull, Hackman was brilliant and Beaty had his good scenes (like when he reads in the paper that he left his brother to die). What I also liked about the film was that, instead of playing Bonnie and Clyde as heartless criminals you can see how things really got blown out of perportion. You can see how they were linked to robberies they never commited mainly becuase there was no one else to accuse, and you can see how Bonnie starts to miss her mother deeply, and when she encounters her again you can read in her eyes the regret for starting her life in crime, especially when her mother says that she better keep running for if she were to stop she would be killed. Bonnie never intending all of this to happen, and for that matter, neither did Clyde, but one bad choice after another adds up, and the ending for Bonnie and Clyde was just as she predicted..."It's death for Bonnie and Clyde."...more info
- We can be like Bonnie and Clyde, I'll be by your side
This is a really great movie! I've never seen this movie until I bought the Blu-ray, and now I'm in love with it! This is what a real movie is supposed to be like. I'm a teenager and I hate the movies my generation has. I think we need more good quality movies like this! I never owned the VHS or DVD so I can't really say how much of an improvement the PQ is, but for a movie made in 1967 you would never be able to tell with the Blu-ray. Some people don't like the packaging, but I really like it. It's got a 34 page book filled with lots of fun trivia, and the movie case is literally shaped like a book! Though I have to admit, you'll have to take care of the case because it isn't as sturdy as a standard Blu-ray case, but I still like it. Seriously, buy this movie! You won't regret it!...more info
- 3 stars out of 4
The Bottom Line:
Bonnie and Clyde was a cultural touchstone, but that does not make it a classic; while it is by no means a poor movie, it has a tendency to meander and does not resonate now the way it did in the 1960s....more info
- A Great 1960's Film Worthy of All The Critical Acclaim
Much has been said & written about "Bonnie & Clyde" since it came out in 1967. It is considered to be one of the best American movies and is worthy of the critical acclaim it has received. Warren Beatty, Faye Dunaway, Gene Hackman, Gene Wilder, and several lesser-known but recognizable character actors give memorable performances. The movie's violence was considered shocking at the time, but would probably be PG-13 by today's standards. Overall an excellent film....more info
- Landmark of American Cinema
1967 was a watershed year for American film. The Best Picture nominees were "Bonnie and Clyde", "In the Heat of the Night", "The Graduate", "Guess Who's Coming To Dinner" and..."Dr. Doolittle". "In Cold Blood" wasn't nominated. "Bonnie and Clyde" was unlike any film that came before and that may account for it's spotty reception upon initial release. Is the film a treatise on the nature of violence? Is it a commentary on misguided hero worship? Whatever, it's a damn good movie. "Bonnie and Clyde" may not have influenced Peckinpah but it sure anticipated him. Director Arthur Penn does a terrific job of evoking the Great Depression, a time when it would be perfectly understandable for the mass public to embrace anti-social misfits like the Barrow Gang. Warren Beatty projects aw-shucks geniality as Clyde, a man who knows how to handle a six-shooter but shoots blanks in the bedroom. Faye Dunaway is sensuous as Bonnie, a waitress who joins Clyde not so much for altruistic reasons but more for thrill seeking. Terrific supporting cast includes Gene Hackman as Clyde's along for the ride brother, Buck, Estelle Parsons as Buck's highstrung wife, Blanche, and Michael J. Pollard as the lazy gaited mechanic who relishes the opportunity to rub elbows with notoriety. "Bonnie and Clyde" hasn't dated one iota from 1967 and is definitely deserving of it's status in the American Film Pantheon....more info
- Holds Up Like a New Film with a True New Copy
Great looking DVD reminds me of many reasons this film is significant as well as entertaining. The photography, the editing, the story and the sound are all very cleverly creative. The sound was recorded with low levels at times to contrast other loud moments, say with guns. At an opening, Beatty confronted a wel meaning projectionist who was turning the sound down for these moments, thinking it was a flaw in the print.
All new packages are great but the Ult. Coll. Ed. is sweet. Some of the nicest I've seen. The hardcover book is a decorative coffee table style book and the pressbook is readable and interesting. The hardcover book is in ALL editions except "The Lesser Special Edition" DVD and the sleeves are not books w/dvds, they are ''Booklike Designed" dvd holders. It's a great looking book and package. I say pony up for the Ultimate Ed., Criterion would charge twice as much. Don't forget to watch the move....more info
- A rare Gangster Film.
This movie was before the craze, mobster, super-gore film Pulp Fiction so I suppose it was almost impossible to suspect while being engrossed in Academy Award-like performances that such a horrendous fate would lie in wait for the characters of Bonnie and Clyde; Just as twistedly surprised as for the almost unsuspecting duo as well. The fates of all the ill fated characters in more traditional mob movies such as the very movie which set the bar for all others: The Godfather (Widescreen Edition) had a ticker for its characters and their ends, while shockingly delivered, were all part of the live by the gun die by the gun rule. But this film has you romantically envolved in its characters, to the point where villain and proctagonist are blurred and you wait for your tear-filled happy ending. The ending punishes you and dispells the step-by-step way about doing a Hollywood film. As brave as the legendary Director Stanley Kubrick in all his glory. A Glowing achievement for Warren Beaty and all responsible for this great movie....more info
- Models gone wild
For the first half of this film, it's just pretty to look at. Dunaway and Beatty are just too pretty for words even if the acting is questionable. I was amazed to find out that Estelle Parson won an Oscar for her portrayal of Blanche (the only member to live to a ripe old age.) Parson just runs around screaming--annoyingly so. Still the film manages to entertains and in the end that's all that counts....more info
- They're Young...They're In Love...They Kill People....
Bonnie and Clyde: The Ultimate Collector's Edition (Warner Home Video) gives us a chance to reexamine a classic film forty-one years after its initial release. If you're asking whether it's worth shelling out the money for this, the answer is a qualified "yes." Is it a "perfect package?" No, not by a long shot...no pun intended. My review will address the component parts of this product.
The film "Bonnie and Clyde" was released rather tepidly by Warner Brothers (which had been purchased by Seven Arts during post-production) in 1967. The film stands on its own (literally) in this box set, and unless improved picture quality is important to you, you would probably be satisfied with the earlier DVD issuance of the film.
Still, the film is astonishing enough. Unlike many 1960's films, it is ageless. "Bonnie and Clyde" is regarded by some reviewers as being one of two classic "anti-hero" films released that year ("The Graduate" being the other film). In case you haven't seen the film....
"Bonnie and Clyde" succeeded in reviving interest in the lives of two Depression-era outlaws, Clyde Barrow (1909-1934) and his girlfriend, Bonnie Parker (1910-1934). Skillfully combining some fact with quite a bit of fiction -- a device that's become commonplace in film -- "Bonnie and Clyde" boasts an outstanding cast. Warren Beatty, who also served as producer of the film, is Clyde -- a charming albeit criminal personality who is also impotent. Bonnie is portrayed by then newcomer Faye Dunaway as a tough young woman yearning for excitement even as she is frustrated by Clyde's lack of sexual interest or prowess ("You're advertising is just dandy," she tells Clyde in an early scene, "Folks would never guess you don't have a thing to sell."
The cast is rounded out by the always excellent Gene Hackman as Clyde's brother Buck alongside Oscar-winner Estelle Parsons as Blanche, his tightly-wound, unhappy and (portrayed rather shrewishly) wife. Michael J. Pollard portrays C.W. Moss -- the only fictional composite amongst the film version of the Barrow gang (he represents three of Clyde's real-life accomplices: Raymond Hamilton, W.D. Jones and Henry Methvin). Smaller roles feature Gene Wilder (his first film) and Evans Evans as a couple who are, in essence, kidnapped by the Barrow gang for a while and forced to accompany them until being released -- a slightly fictionalized incident that in real life involved Dillard Darby and Sophia Stone of Louisiana. Denver Pyle portrays Texas Ranger Frank Hamer and Dub Taylor portrays C.W.'s father. The film is directed by Arthur Penn.
One of the things that has always struck me about the film is the change in tempo and mood. The movie begins with Bonnie and Clyde flirting after Bonnie spies Clyde trying to steal her mother's car. There is the early comedic touch (Clyde trying to rob a bank that has failed). But then Clyde kills a bank teller during a bothched robbery, because C.W. has parked their getaway car and gets boxed in (a scene that goes from laughter to horror as effectively as the oft-mentioned scene in "Jaws" when Roy Scheider sees the shark for the first time aboard the Orca).
From that point on, the violence escalates and the comedic touches are gone. Instead, we are treated to various portents of what is to come. The Barrow gang escape their early shoot outs but then become increasingly bloody in subsequent engagements; dark clouds appear over a cornfield as Bonnie runs away from Clyde, missing her mother; Bonnie ejects the two captives (Wilder and Evans) after learning he is an undertaker -- death is now next to them. This culminates, of course, in the death ballet as Bonnie and Clyde are riddled with bullets.
I am sure others have commented on the historical inaccuracies in the film, but I'll mention a few:
* Bonnie and Clyde actually met at the home of a mutual friend in 1930, and Bonnie did not accompany Clyde on his criminal escapades until 1932.
* Contrary to the film depiction, Bonnie and Clyde seldom robbed banks. Most of their robberies involved small businesses.
* The motivation behind the formation of the Barrow gang was to perpetuate a raid on the Eastham Prison farm, where Barrow had been abused, and to free Raymond Hamilton.
* The most outrageous fictional event in the film, in my opinion, is the film incident where Clyde captures and humiliates Texas Ranger Frank Hamer -- who spits on Bonnie. In reality, Frank Hamer never met Bonnie and Clyde until May 23, 1934 when he was part of the posse that ambushed and killed them near Arcadia, Louisiana. Hamer had been hired as a special agent by the Texas Prison System, following Barrow's Eastham Prison raid, and he was assisted by five other men (B.F. "Manny" Gault, a former Texas Ranger colleague; Henderson Jordan and Prentiss Oakley from the Bienville Parish Sheriff's Office; and Robert Alcorn and Ted Hinton from the Dallas Sheriff's office).
The second disc in this edition is certainly worth the price of admission. There is a three part "Making of.../Marketing of" featurette with interviews of Beatty, Dunaway, Hackman, Parsons, Pollard, Evans, screenwriter Robert Benton (his co-writer, David Newman, is deceased), editor Dede Allen, director Arthur Penn...
While it has been noted by others that Benton and Newman's screenplay owed much to the French New Wave cinema and that they sought Francois Truffault's involvement (he passed, but mentioned the screenplay to Beatty), I was not aware that the original treatment included a menage-a-trois involving Clyde-Bonnie-C.W. This was dropped from the final screenplay at the suggestion of Arthur Penn.
I also was unaware (or had forgotten) that the film bombed on its first release, and that Beatty had taken over the publicity campaign and the film was re-released, garnering a rave review from Pauline Kael. It's a nice bit of film history....and Faye Dunaway still looks stunning!
The second disc also features the A&E documentary, "Love and Death: The story of Bonnie and Clyde." It is well done, and features comments from historians and Clyde's sister Marie -- who died just a few years ago.
There are two deleted scenes offered as an extra, both of them without an audio track. They're interesting but not essential and it is easy to see why each ended up on the cutting room floor. There is also a Warren Beatty wardrobe test.
There is a perfect bound "photo book" of stills from the movie, which is very nicely done. There is also a smaller "press book" which is a nice keepsake -- although some of the print is a tad small.
On the whole, I am happy I made the purchase. ...more info