Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Outlaw Lovebirds

What is it about these two outlaw lovebirds, Bonnie and Clyde, that so captured the American imagination?  I remember going to see their shot-up car as a kid, parked on display at Columbia Mall in Grand Forks, North Dakota.  I thought I could see a little blood in the backseat while hearing Estelle Parsons screaming, "My eyes!  My eyes!"

What I like most about this picture is the contrast between these two cracker hillbillies, the type you'd now see in any Waffle House near any Interstate on any given morning these days, and Warren Beatty and Fay Dunaway.  Ah, cinema.  But what I like best about the movie is the raw grit and naturalism combined with the physical beauty of the two heros.  That was a haunting flick for a kid raised on the blander TV fare of the late sixties, early seventies, and that last scene still haunts me today.

What do you suppose she's saying to Clyde as they clown for the camera and mock their trackers?

"Hand that hogleg over here, Barrows, or I'll clean out your belly button with this here ole pump-action gut-shredder.  Ha!"

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for dropping by my blog this morning. Enjoyed your commentary on the Bonnie and Clyde photo. I'm guessing the conversation between the two was far from Hollywood script material. Altman's THIEVES LIKE US probably comes a lot closer. I also find the final scene of BONNIE & CLYDE still riveted in memory after all these many years. Ian Frazier's GREAT PLAINS has an anecdote about them that I love, too.