Movie Mirrors Index

Bonnie and Clyde

(1967 c 111')

En: 8 Ed: 7

Based on a true story and directed by Arthur Penn, during the Depression a young man persuades a pretty woman to join him in holding up banks. They get help from a young mechanic who knows cars, and Clyde’s brother and his wife become part of the famous Barrow gang that commits armed robberies and kills police officers.
      Bonnie Parker (Faye Dunaway) is naked in a bedroom and looks outside and sees a man at her mama’s car. She tells him to wait there and quickly puts on clothes and runs outside and accuses him of trying to steal an old lady’s automobile. Clyde Barrow (Warren Beatty) says he is thinking of buying one. She says he does not have money for dinner. He says he could buy her a coke, but she declines to go out with him. She asks what he thinks she is, and he says a waitress. She asks what he did before, and he admits he was in state prison for armed robbery. She is walking in town, and he follows her. He says he chopped two toes off his foot to get off work detail. He asks if she wants to see it.
      Clyde and Bonnie are drinking cokes, and she asks what armed robbery was like. He does not say, and she says he did not rob any place. He shows her his pistol, and she handles it and asks if he would use it. He tells her to wait there and goes across the street and into a grocery store. Soon he comes out with a handful of cash and shoots at the man who comes after him. He opens the hood to start a car and gets in. She asks his name and goes with him. He parks in the country, and she is kissing him so passionately that he tells her to slow down. He gets out of the car and says he is not a lover boy, though he does not like boys. He says if she wants a stud service, she can go home to Dallas. He asks her to come along with him. She asks why, and he says because she is different. He says they will travel, and everyone will know about it. He asks how she would like to be waited on in a Dallas hotel. She asks how he figured that up. He says it was when he saw her and that she may be the best girl in Texas.
      In a restaurant Clyde tells Bonnie about her past life and how she hated it. She did not like dating the boys, and she thought about how she could get away from that. He says that now she knows. The waitress brings them hamburgers, and he tells her to change her hair style. He combs it out, and he says she is a knockout.
      They come out, and he gets into a convertible car. She says they came in the other one but gets in the car with him.
      In an old house Bonnie asks Clyde coming in where he slept, and he says outside. She says the accommodations are not too good. Outside he shows her how well he can shoot, and then he teaches her to shoot better. They each have a gun, and a farmer comes to them and says the place was his before the bank took it. He says now it belongs to them, and she says that is a shame. He tells them to go ahead because they just came by for a last look. Clyde shoots up the bank sign and hands the gun to the farmer so that he can shoot at it too. He shoots out a window and hands the pistol to a black man who shoots at the house also. The farmer introduces himself and his friend to them, and Clyde says they rob banks.
      Bonnie is driving the car, and Clyde says it is going to be easy. He tells her to be ready if he needs her. They stop by a bank in a small town, and she keeps the motor running.
      Clyde bursts into the bank and tells a teller to give him the money. The teller says there is no money there because they failed three weeks ago. He tells the guy to come out and tell his girl, and they go outside together. Bonnie laughs, and Clyde gets in the car and shoots up the bank sign before he drives off. He says they got $1.98, and she is laughing.
      Clyde has filled up a grocery bag and asks for peach pies. The butcher attacks him with a meat cleaver, and Clyde fights with him. He runs out and gets in the car, and Bonnie drives off fast. He says he did not want to hurt him.
      At a gas station C. W. Moss (Michael J. Pollard) tells Clyde there is dirt in the fuel line, and Bonnie says he is smart. He asks her what kind of car this is, and she says it is a stolen car. Clyde asks if he is scared. Clyde says they could have used him and asks if he is a good driver. Clyde gets in the car and says he is better off there. Bonnie introduces themselves and says they rob banks. Moss laughs and agrees there is nothing wrong with that. Clyde asks if he has the guts to pull bank jobs. Moss says he is not afraid, and Clyde asks him to prove it. Moss goes inside and takes the money from the cash register and throws it in the car. Clyde opens the rumble seat, and Moss gets in. They drive off.
      Police are showing photographs to the butcher in the hospital, and he recognizes the one of Clyde.
      Clyde is snoring, and Bonnie in the same bed looks at him. Moss is asleep in a chair. Clyde opens his eyes.
      Clyde gets out of a red car in a town and goes into a bank with Bonnie. He has a gun out and says it is a stick-up.
      Outside Moss parks the car across the street. Clyde and Bonnie come out with the money and look for the car. They hear the burglar alarm, see the car, and get in. Moss has trouble getting out of the parking place. As they are leaving town, an old man climbs on the running board, and Clyde shoots him through the window in the face. As they are leaving, a sheriff shoots at them, and they shoot back.
      In a movie theater they hear the song “We’re in the Money” in the Gold Diggers of 1933.
      In a room Bonnie sings the song, and Clyde tells her to sit down. He says they killed a man and were seen. He says she was not seen and can get away now if she wants to. He says she could get a rich man, but she says she doesn’t want a rich man. He says she will not have a minute’s peace, and she asks if he promises. They laugh, and he lies on the bed with her and kisses her. He gets up and pulls the shade down and then throws things off the bed before resuming the lovemaking. She lies on him and tries to take his pants off and then sits at the foot of the bed. He reaches for her, and she lies down again. He gets up and says at least he is not a liar. He says he told her he was no lover boy. She shrugs her shoulders and smiles.
      Buck Barrow (Gene Hackman) and his wife Blanche (Estelle Parsons) arrive in a car, and he gets out and horses around with Clyde. He tells Clyde that mama is fine. Buck introduces his brother to his wife Blanche. Buck meets Bonnie, and Clyde introduces Moss. He asks if their magazine has any pictures of Myrna Loy. Buck takes a picture of Clyde with Blanche. Clyde has him take a picture of him with a rifle. Clyde takes a picture of Buck and Blanche hugging. Clyde takes a picture of Bonnie with a pistol and a cigar.
      Clyde goes inside with Buck and asks what he thinks of Bonnie. He says she is a peach, and he asks if she is as good as she looks. Clyde says she is better. Buck says it must have been Clyde or the guy he killed, and he asks him not to tell Blanche about that. Clyde asks Buck if Blanche talked him into going back to jail after he broke out; Clyde says he won’t tell Bonnie. He says they will have a good time, and Buck asks what they will do. Clyde says they will go to Missouri where he is not known. Buck says they are not going back to prison. Clyde says he got paroled soon after he cut off his toes.
      Clyde is driving, and Buck tells him a story about a tee-totaling ma and a doctor who got her drinking brandy in milk and more each day. She told the doctor not to sell that cow.
      Buck says goodbye to a man who pulls out of a driveway and drives off. They put the two cars in the driveway as Buck tells Clyde he gave him a month’s rent in advance. Buck carries Blanche in the house and tells her that it is their first home. Moss, Bonnie, and Clyde come in. Buck on the phone is ordering a supply of food. Later Buck and Moss play checkers, and Blanche hugs Buck. In a bedroom Bonnie entices Clyde to the bed, but he says others are in the next room. She asks if he never wants to be alone with her. He says he is hungry and leaves the room.
      A boy delivers two bags of groceries, and Bonnie pays him $6.43. The boy looks back as he leaves.
      Bonnie is reading from a paper to the others, and Buck asks if she wrote that. She is telling a story of a gal of rare beauty that rhymes. Clyde looks out the window and says the law is there. They panic. Clyde gets a gun and starts shooting at the police. Moss tries to keep Blanche from screaming. Buck tells her to shut up. Buck gets a rifle and says they have to get the car out. Buck and Blanche go out the back, and he shoots a policeman. They get in the car, and Clyde drives into the police car as Buck shoots a policeman. They plow through a police barricade. In the car Blanche is hysterical and tells Buck she did not marry him for this; she wants to leave. Buck says they can’t because he killed a guy. Bonnie tells her to shut up and says to stop the car because she wants to talk to Clyde. He drives off the road into a field of grain, and they get out. Bonnie says Blanche is dumb and a hick. Clyde asks her what makes her so special; she was just a waitress picking up truck drivers. She tells Clyde he is ignorant too and has peculiar ideas about lovemaking which is none at all. He does not say anything, and she says she got scared and did not mean it. They get in the car, and they drive back on the road. They stop by a mailbox and grab a newspaper. Buck reads the story about the Barrow gang which says how far and wide they have robbed banks and stories. He reads that Clyde’s brother Buck has been identified as a member of the gang. They park by a river, and Clyde gets out. Buck continues to read the story that talks about three men and a blonde woman.
      Near their car the Texas Ranger Frank Hamer (Denver Pyle) parks out of sight. He walks up to the car, and Clyde calls to him from behind and shoots at him. Buck and Moss get out of the car, and the three men handcuff him. Clyde pulls off his badge and says he should be out protecting the poor folks and not arresting them. Clyde says they need to discourage this bounty hunting for the Barrow gang. Buck asks if he wants to shoot him. Moss says hang him, and Bonnie suggests taking his picture to send it to the newspapers. She says they will see Frank Hamer with the Barrow gang all being friendly. She holds a pistol and puts her arm around him. Clyde puts his badge back on and stands next to him with Bonnie leaning on his other side. Buck takes it and another of her kissing him. Hamer spits in her face, and she gets angry. Clyde throws Hamer in the river, and Buck helps him put him in a rowboat. They push it into the river, and Clyde says they got him. He and Buck climb out of the river.
      Clyde, Buck, and Bonnie come into a bank with pistols, and Clyde tells them they are the Barrow gang and not to do anything so they won’t get hurt. Buck and Bonnie are gathering money, and Clyde lets an old man keep his own money. The alarm starts, and they run out and get in the car and drive off. A police car follows them on a dirt road. Clyde is driving, and they shoot at each other. Two cars are following them.
      An officer says he was staring in the face of death.
      Clyde drives across a field and is followed by the two cars.
      An old man says they did right by him, and he will bring flowers to their funeral.
      One police car turns over on a turn. In the other car a policeman says he is not going to risk his life.
      The car is parked in a field, and Clyde says the money is not much. Moss is working on the car, and Clyde divides the money. Blanche whispers to Buck who asks if she gets a share. Blanche says she is wanted by the law too, and she is a nervous wreck. She has to take sass from Bonnie. Clyde says she will get her share and takes a little from the others and gives it to her. Buck says he married a preacher’s daughter, and she is still taking up the collection. Bonnie is angry, and Clyde tells her that Blanche is family. Bonnie asks what else they can do beside rob banks. Moss says the car is leaking oil.
      They have parked in a residential neighborhood and get into another car and drive off. Eugene Grizzard (Gene Wilder) has been kissing his girlfriend Velma Davis (Evans Evans), and she says that is his car. He shouts at them. Velma drives a car, and Eugene says he will get them; but then he gets afraid. She stops and turns the car around. They see this, and Clyde turns around and goes after them. Clyde catches them and drives them off the road so that they stop. The five get out of his car and look in the windows. Clyde invites them to go for a ride with them, and they all squeeze into Eugene’s car. Buck introduces them as the Barrow gang. Eugene admits they have read about them. Bonnie says they must be in love. Buck holds up a rifle and says he has to marry the girl. Buck tells his joke about the brandy in the milk, and they laugh. Eugene says he is from Wisconsin where the cheese comes from, and Velma says he likes Texas now. Bonnie asks how old she is, and Velma says she is 33 which surprises Eugene.
      Later at night they are eating hamburgers and French fries in the moving car. Eugene complains he ordered his hamburger well done, and Moss offers his partially eaten one. Clyde asks if they want to join up with them, and Eugene says they would be surprised at that back home. Bonnie asks what he does, and Eugene says he is an undertaker. Bonnie tells them to get them out of there. The car stops, and Eugene and Velma are left behind.
      The next day Moss is driving while Clyde runs along looking for Bonnie. He sees her in a dry corn field and chases her. She tells him to leave her alone. She falls down, and he hugs her and asks her not to leave him without saying anything. She says she has been thinking about her mama, and she asks if she can see her. He says yes and embraces her.
      The car is parked on a farm, and Bonnie is with her mother. She talks with a younger woman who has children. Bonnie plays with them and embraces her mother. Buck and Clyde play with them too. They say goodbye, and a man asks Clyde where they are heading. Clyde says they are not heading anywhere; they are running from. Bonnie gives her mother a necklace, and she asks Clyde to persuade her mother to stay longer. The mother says she is worried about them. Clyde says he is good at robbing banks, and he will not risk her girl just to make money. He says how he passed by money because Bonnie might get hurt. He says they will quit after the hard times are over. He says they were talking about getting a home, and Bonnie said she could not bear to live anywhere but near her mother. The mother says if they did that, she would not live long. She tells them to keep running and says goodbye. The mother and her relatives leave in their cars.
      The five are talking in a house. Buck touches Moss’s tattoo, and Blanche screams. Bonnie winces and tells them to go into their own cabin if they are going to play with C. W. Clyde says he saw a chicken place and asks who wants food. Moss asks what they want, and Clyde says to get five chicken dinners. Buck goes out too and asks for peach ice cream.
      Blanche goes in the car with Moss.
      Inside Bonnie tells Clyde that she has the blues so bad, and she lies on the bed. He asks if it was what her mama said. She says she is so old that she does not have a mama or a family either. Clyde says he is her family, and she cuddles up to him on the bed. He says he loves her.
      In the car Moss tells Blanche that she is smoking a lot lately. She says she was a preacher’s daughter and that he liked Buck even though he spent time in jail. Moss says his family was disciples of Christ.
      In the restaurant Blanche asks Moss for some money, and a man sees the pistol in his belt. They get their order and go out. The man calls the sheriff.
      Later a policeman knocks on the door, and two cars pull up. Shooting starts, and an armored car arrives. Both sides are using automatic weapons, and a policeman is shot. Clyde comes out of a barn and shoots up a police car that crashes. Buck uses a mattress as a shield. Moss throws a grenade that blows up the armored car. Clyde and Bonnie get in the car. Moss shoots a policeman, and Buck is shot and bleeds. Clyde and Bonnie come out a little ways in the car, and she shoots a policeman. He stops the car and gets out and helps Buck into the car. They drive out, and Bonnie shoots another policeman. Blanche has blood on her face. They drive away and pick up Moss in back.
      They stop the car, and Moss starts another car and follows them. Clyde is driving, and in the back Blanche is holding wounded Buck. They park, and Moss tells Bonnie that Buck’s head is blown off. Blanche prays that he will never do anything bad again. Buck is bleeding while lying on Clyde and says he thinks he lost his shoes to the dog.
      The next morning they are lying next to the car. A man says they are there, and shooting starts. Clyde drives the car around during the shooting, but they are surrounded. He tells the others to keep down, and he is wounded in the arm. The car runs into a fallen tree and stops. The men shooting at them shoot out the tires of the other car. Clyde, Bonnie, and Moss run into the woods while Blanche stays with Buck. The men stop shooting and surround them; a man pulls screaming Blanche away from Buck.
      Clyde, Bonnie, and Moss are crossing a river, and she is wounded. She and Moss lie in a field as Clyde goes and starts another car nearby and brings it to them. He and Moss help Bonnie into the car, and Moss drives off.
      The car arrives at a hobo camp by a river, and Moss gets out and asks if they can spare some drinking water. A man hands him a canteen, and he takes it to the car and pours some in a bowl and gives it to Bonnie to drink and then to Clyde. The poor people gather around the car, and a child asks if they are famous. They identify her as Bonnie Parker.  Moss starts the car and drives off.
      At night Moss parks the car and calls to his daddy Ivan Moss (Dub Taylor) who comes out of the house. C. W. asks him to help him get them inside. They carry Bonnie who is wrapped in a blanket.
      The Texas Ranger Frank Hamer in an office shows two law officers a newspaper photo of him with Bonnie and Clyde and says he wants to have his picture taken with them one more time.
      On the porch C. W. reads in the newspaper that Clyde fled his dying brother. Clyde gets angry and says he was already dead when he left him. He is angry and says they reported them robbing the Grand Prairie National Bank while they were here. He says they will hold up that bank. Bonnie has an arm in a sling and helps Clyde sit down. C. W. asks why they always refer to him as an “unidentified suspect.” Clyde says he is lucky they don’t know his last name, and his father agrees with him. C. W. asks his pa how he likes having big wheels in his house. Clyde offers to give him $40 for the hospitality; but Ivan Moss says no and that he is glad to have their company. He says they are welcome to stay as long as they want.
      Inside Ivan tells his son that he looks like trash with his tattoo. He is angry and says he is glad his mother is not there to see him.
      A man says that Bonnie and Clyde are fixing to bust Blanche out, and Hamer asks if all two of them will do it. He goes into the room where Blanche has a bandage over her eyes. He touches her, and she screams. He says it has been rough on her, being the daughter of a preacher. He says Clyde led Buck astray, and she cries. He says that is a shame. He mentions the little fellow and says he was with them all along. She calls him “C. W.,” and he asks his last name. She tells him his name is C. W. Moss. She goes on talking, and he leaves her alone.
      In the rain Clyde and Bonnie are sitting in the car. She is writing a poem about them, and he asks to hear it. She reads her poem of Bonnie and Clyde. He says he wants to send it into the newspapers. She writes that they are called “cold-hearted killers” who are mean, but she has a different view.
      Later she reads the poem from a newspaper, and it ends with “the death of Bonnie and Clyde.” He says she made him somebody they will remember, and he kisses her. The car is parked in a field.
      In an ice cream parlor Ivan Moss is talking to Hamer. Ivan gets up and goes out.
      Clyde is putting on his shirt and asks Bonnie if he is feeling the way he should after. She says he did just perfect, and he agrees that he did. He says he did not figure on that.
      At night in bed Bonnie asks Clyde why he wants to marry her, and he says to make an honest woman out of her. She asks what it would be like if they could walk out of there clean with no record and no one after them. He says he would do it all different. He says they would live in a different state than where they do jobs. She does not say anything.
      Ivan asks C. W. if they expect him to go with him to town tomorrow. He tells him when they go to town, not to get back in the car with them. Ivan says he made a deal to get him off with just a couple years. C. W. says nobody will catch Clyde ever.
      Bonnie and Clyde carry groceries and get in the car. He asks her what happened to C. W., and she says he is buying light bulbs for his daddy. Clyde puts on dark glasses with a lense missing. He asks where the boy is, and she goes to get him. A car parks next to him, and a law man gets out and sees Clyde. He backs up the car and tells her it is time to go home. She gets in the car, and C. W. from a window sees them leaving.
      Clyde is driving, and Bonnie shares a pear with him.
      By the road Ivan Moss is pumping air into a tire, and Bonnie asks if that is Ivan. Clyde pulls off the road and walks over to Ivan who sees a car coming and jumps under his truck. Men with automatic rifles from bushes begin firing dozens of bullets that hit Bonnie and Clyde and the car. Hamer and four other law officers come out of the bushes, and Ivan Moss sees what happened too.
      This true story of famous bank robbers and killers during the Depression both reflects and has influenced the increasing violence in American society during the era of the Vietnam War. The thrill of dangerous robbing excites Clyde even more than sexual activity with a beautiful woman; but she feels unfulfilled and gets depressed when she realizes their lives are coming to a dead end.

Copyright © 2012 by Sanderson Beck

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