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BONNIE AND CLYDE ($35) is one of the most fascinating screen entertainments ever to be produced and certainly one of the most influential and memorable motion pictures of the 1960ís. Here is a film that plays with its audience- lulling them into a false sense of security by starting off lighthearted and somewhat comedic fashion, but as it progresses, BONNIE AND CLYDE turns deadly serious; becoming utterly brutal and excessively violent by its conclusion. As a fictionalized account of the notorious depression era bank robbers, BONNIE AND CLYDE canít help but glamorize the murderous pair, thanks largely to the casting of such fabulous looking performers as Faye Dunaway and Warren Beatty.

Now, despite the physical beauty of its two leading players, BONNIE AND CLYDE doesnít glamorize the deeds or shortcomings of Bonnie Parker or Clyde Barrow, thanks to the excellent performances of Dunaway and Beatty, who are never afraid to show the warts and other imperfections within their characters. Even with their warts of clear display, BONNIE AND CLYDE turns its title characters into anti-heroes, with whom the audience comes to empathize and serves as another reason why the film still resonates. The Barrow gang also includes Gene Hackman as Buck Barrow, Michael J. Pollard as C.W. Moss and Estelle Parsons as Blanche Barrow. Parsons performance (and histrionics) as the preacherís daughter forced into a life of crime by marriage is such a standout that it won her a Best Supporting Actress Oscar. The cast of BONNIE AND CLYDE also features Denver Pyle, Dub Taylor, Evans Evans and Gene Wilder.

Warner Home Video has made BONNIE AND CLYDE available on Blu-ray Disc in a 1.78:1 aspect ratio presentation that has been encoded onto the disc with the VC-1 codec. A great deal of care has obviously gone into the transfer, color correction and digital cleanup of this forty-year-old film, which is clearly evidenced in the 1080p presentation that offers fans the best-looking release of BONNIE AND CLYDE that they are likely to see. The clarity and depth of the image can be incredibly good; in fact, there are some standout sequences which may cause one to forget they are watching a four-decade-old movie. Sharpness and detail is generally excellent, but there are moments where the cinematography takes the stylistic choice towards soft focus and the image becomes appropriately softer. Colors tend to be rich and appealing, with a warm golden glow that can produce a visually antiqued sense. Blacks are usually deep and inky, while the whites very crisp. Contrast is very good and the shadow detail is good for the period in which BONNIE AND CLYDE was produced. The levels of film grain vary; there are moments where is can be somewhat heavy. However, the levels of grain are appropriate to a film from this generation.

BONNIE AND CLYDE comes with a perfectly fine Dolby Digital monaural soundtrack. The sound seems to have been cleaned up to a great extent, removing most of the background hiss and surface noise from the four-decade-old recordings For the most part, the sound is crisp, but the fidelity does have the expected limitations. Most of the time the music comes across in an acceptable manner. Dialogue is crisply rendered and remains totally understandable. No other language tracks have been included on the DVD, but English, French, Spanish and Korean subtitles are provided.

The interactive menus allow one access to the standard scene selection and set up features, as well as the supplemental materials. Starting things off is Love And Death: The True Story Of Bonnie And Clyde, which is a forty-three minute program from The History Channel that looks at the real people upon whom the film characters are based. Revolution: The Making Of Bonnie And Clyde runs sixty-five minutes and features new interviews with most of the talent involved with the production of the film. Deleted Scenes, Warren Beatty Wardrobe Tests and two Trailers close out the disc-based supplements. BONNIE AND CLYDE features book styled packaging that contains thirty-four pages of photos and production notes.

BONNIE AND CLYDE is an important screen classic that has been given its best ever presentation on Blu-ray. Very highly recommended.


Bonnie and Clyde [Blu-ray] (1967)


DVD & Blu-rayDisc reviews are Copyright © 2008 THE CINEMA LASER and may not be copied or reprinted without the written consent of the publisher.
THE CINEMA LASER is written, edited and published by Derek M. Germano.



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