Bonnie and Clyde: Beginning of a New Hollywood Era Essay

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BONNIE AND CLYDE : “Beginning of the New Hollywood Era.”

Bonnie and Clyde is a 1967 American crime film about Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow, the criminal version of Romeo and Juliet, the true story of the most beloved yet infamous outlaws, robbers and convicts who journeyed the Central United States during the Great Depression. The film was directed by Arthur Penn, and stars Faye Dunaway as Bonnie Parker, and Warren Beatty as Clyde Barrow.

Bonnie and Clyde is reckoned as one of the 60s' most talked-about, volatile, controversial crime/gangster films combining comedy, terror, love, and ferocious violence, and regarded as one of the first films of the New Hollywood era, in which it broke many taboos and was so popular amongst the
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The deep focus of the opening scene allows us to see her room humbly decorated with a small, vulgar collection of porcelain figurines and a rag doll, and a few family photographs are tacked on the drab wall. These details allow us to see Bonnie as an ordinary person. Likewise, Clyde is portrayed as a clean cut gentleman with white fedora hat, white shirt, and tie and jacket, and a bright white smile. His jacket, a warm brown earthy brown, softens any inclinations we may have of him as a criminal after Bonnie catches him about to steal her mother’s car.

The mise-en-scene on the long tracking shot down an empty Main Street (except for one elderly Negro sitting on a bench in front of the barber shop) in the small, rural, Southwest Texas town allows us to connect the hard times and limited opportunities (boarded up stores) that surround Bonnie and Clyde and then a close-up of Clyde’s face. Clyde’s mouth is dominated by objects, like the Coke bottle and the match, which demonstrate his confidence. Perhaps, a close-up shot is used instead of the standard wide shot is to emphasize this aspect of Clyde’s personality. When Bonnie rubs the tip of the bottle of coke across her