Bonnie and Clyde: The American New Wave or Renaissance


Added on  2023-06-15

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Bonnie and Clyde: The American New Wave or Renaissance_1

The essay discusses the idea of American new wave or renaissance in the mid0to late
1960s. this term usually refers to the American films like Easy Writer, Bonnie and Clyde and
The Graduate when a fresh new generation of the young filmmakers introduced themselves in
the United States films. They deeply influenced the types of film contents, their production as
well as their marketing (Selcer 2016). They even influenced approach of film making in
Hollywood. The essay critically analyses the revolution, effect on new generation, use of
violence and its criticism.
During the 1960s, a film revolution started that brought the younger, rebellious
generation in lime light. This revolution ignited a new age in filmmaking which was known
as the ‘New Hollywood’ era. It stated with the movie Bonnie and Clyde. According to the
film historians, Bonnie and Clyde by Arthur Penn’s in 1967 was the beginning of Hollywood
renaissance movement. The concept that the film is based on one of the taboo topics that the
producers and directors of Hollywood tried to avoid previously (Krämer 2013). The critics
like Pauline Kael in her long essay credited the film for ushering in more liberal as well as
mature content. The Time featured a picture from the film with sensational headline that read
as ‘'The New Cinema: Violence... Sex... Art'. This film was applauded for generational
change of the Hollywood film industry. The renaissance in Hollywood investigates all the
changes that the younger executives as well as directors introduced in the film-making along
with the American culture (Lim and Lee 2016).
Film critics credit the film Bonnie and Clyde for inaugurating the new age in the
American film where Suddenly the directors came at the centre of American film industry.
Several studios such as Warner Bros. as well as Columbia, reacted by producing low-budget
production that were dedicated for making the works of freshly exciting flairs such as Francis
Coppola, Peter Bogdanovich and Martin Scorsese. To the researchers, it was one of the most
thrilling periods in the American filmmaking history. This revolution riled the industry with
Bonnie and Clyde: The American New Wave or Renaissance_2

amazing creativity and finally ended with the upsurge of box-office blockbusters such
as Jaws in 1975 as well as Star Wars in 1977.
Bonnie and Clyde was considered more than a movie. It started a movement and the
side was selected already. The critiques of this particular film disclose the increasing
generation gap marked by the anti-establish movements of 1960s and the movie itself is a
representation of the anti-establish movement. The new boomer generation visualised and
enjoyed the changed mode of communication system that enabled them to see the violence of
WWII, racial unrests on television or in the first page of newspapers or magazines. Therefore,
this generation were ready to question every fabrics of society where they lived (Miller
2016). This growing swell for anti-establishment movements marked this generation gap.
The protagonists of this film Bonnie and Clyde, is indebted to the ideology of the
notorious criminals of early 1930s. it was the time when the government establishments had
been mistrusted and the actions of the protagonists directly oppose such establishments with
well-publicized crimes. It was revolutionary mixture of genres, styles and extraordinary
violence (Haberski 2015).
This movie had scandalised the contemporary conservatives and their ideologies
regarding society ad morality. starting with the nude scene by Faye Dunaway. She played the
titular and most important character of the film as Bonnie. The movie ends with the realistic
rampage of death of the actors that again opposes the orthodoxy. The film captures blood
along with gore explicitly that the audiences enjoyed very much. Unexpectedly each violent
scene was applauded by the moviegoers (Glick 2014). However, in spite of such advances in
portraying the real lives of the violent criminals convincingly, the film liberally utilizes the
subtleties of the New Wave that can be found in French films and registers the connection
between these two movements.
Bonnie and Clyde: The American New Wave or Renaissance_3

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