Monday, 7 June 2010

Best Actor 1967: Warren Beatty in Bonnie and Clyde

Warren Beatty received his first acting nomination for infamous bank robber Clyde Barrow in Bonnie and Clyde.

Bonnie and Clyde is an incredibly interesting film that gives a unique perspective on the two bank robbers.  I never liked them as the movie seemed to want but it was a fascinating portrait of the people nonetheless.

Warren Beatty is an actor that gives performances which I do not hate but I never really get that involved with. He sometimes relies too much on just his own charisma, and does not try to fuse with the character like say Jack Nicholson does in Chinatown. Beatty here does some of that but this still is one of his better performances.

Warren Beatty is a little mixed as Clyde Barrow at times he is quite good but at the other times he seems slightly off and does seem to be investing enough effort into the character. His accent is never quite assured and seems a little off but not enough to be distracting though. He never quite seems to be Barrow, and maybe another actor probably could have really exceeded in the role. Some of his scenes he just smiles a little too much and seems to be acting like Barrow instead of really being him. I thought he did that the most in the opening and a few times throughout.

He is almost always overshadowed by the rest of the cast. Faye Dunaway as Bonnie always takes the attention away from Clyde when their in the same scene. Beatty's Clyde just a slightly too relaxed in his own way and never seems to really understand their situation, which causing Beatty to not have a lot depth in some scenes such as when they visit Bonnie's mother. Also the supporting players like Gene Hackman and Estelle Parsons really stole attention very well from Beatty, making him a bit of the weaker link in the cast.

Although he certainly does have some strong sequences anyways. He is particularly strong in the scenes after he shoots the bank teller for example, and his realization of what he has done is very well handled by Beatty. Also the scene where he is unable to return affections with Bonnie is very well and realistically handled. Beatty really does have a lot of good little moments and he never is bad, but he probably could have been better.


Anonymous said...

Maybe a 4 for me.

Fritz said...

I also think about 4...the whole cast was excellent!

joe burns said...

I think I agree, although I probably liked it more then you did. Need to see it again!

Malcolm said...

Maybe a 4.5 for me or even 5.

He was written that way, I suppose. And the way he reacts when he is so angry at C.W. Moss. And his look when they are running away, I guess when Buck was shot ion his eyes, and he was the only one quiet in the gang while they are driving away.

He's my pick.

Twister said...

Did anyone else feel there was just something off about Bonnie and Clyde?

I should see it again, maybe, but the direction feels wobbly, and the story doesn't quite illuminate those dark shades so well, but almost turn it into a comedy.