Today marks the 79th anniversary of the death of Bonnie and Clyde on a rural road in Louisiana. While I wouldn’t want to honor a killer like Barrow, it’s certainly the right day to commemorate with a suit from 1967’s iconic Bonnie and Clyde.
Warren Beatty as Clyde Barrow, romantic but flawed Depression-era bandit
Texas, early 1930s
Film: Bonnie & Clyde
Release Date: August 13, 1967
Director: Arthur Penn
Costume Designer: Theadora Van Runkle
With his violently quick temper and poor skill for actually robbing banks, there is little reason for Clyde Barrow to have the fame he does today. However, Clyde chose to bring along young Texas waitress Bonnie Parker for his adventures and a legend was born. Continue reading
Robert Redford as “The Sundance Kid”, exiled American outlaw in Bolivia
Film: Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid
Release Date: October 24, 1969
Director: George Roy Hill
Costume Designer: Edith Head
Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid is brilliant. Whether it was Conrad Hall’s alluring photography, George Roy Hill’s groundbreaking direction, William Goldman’s screenplay that ranges from insanely hilarious to poignantly touching, or – most often cited – the perfect chemistry of leads Paul Newman and Robert Redford.
The film was a new kind of Western. No longer was John Wayne fighting Injuns with his rifle, kerchief, and ten gallon hat. Tom Mix’s white hat vs. black hat days were over. By 1969, the world had moved on into a place of crystal-clear ambiguity. Cheering for the outlaws was not only acceptable, it was preferred.
Of course, that’s much easier when the outlaws are charming, hilarious, and generally non-violent. Paul Newman was a natural choice for the film. After a series of cast rotations that could’ve seen Jack Lemmon, Warren Beatty, Marlon Brando, or Steve McQueen paired up with Newman, Hill and Newman rallied and got up-and-coming Robert Redford the part, despite Fox’s protestations. Interestingly, the older Newman was originally to play younger gunslinger Sundance before Redford was brought on board. The roles were switched and a now-classic film pairing was born. Continue reading