One of my favorite movies of all time is 1967's Bonnie and Clyde, directed by Arthur Penn. For one, it has the BEST tag line ever: "They're young. They're in love. They rob banks." And I also love how the movie is supposed to be set in the 1930's, but Faye Dunaway's hair and makeup scream 1967; right down to the bouffant hair and cat-eye eyeliner. Well, done continuity editor:) But, my hair and makeup criticism aside, it's still a great movie. And an interesting story about quite possibly the most notorious female criminal in U.S. history. Here's a few facts about Ms. Parker:
- She was a smarty. Apparently she did really well in school and received very high marks for her short stories and poetry. This would later become apparent when she composed her poem The Ballad of Bonnie and Clyde, which she sent to newspapers during their much publicized crime spree. Well, that's one way to get published.
- She was a shorty. She was 4' 11" and weighed 90 pounds.
- She was married. But, not to Clyde. Scandalous! Before she met Clyde Barrow, she was married to her high school sweetheart, Roy Thornton at the age of 16. But, Roy decided to not come home a few times and Bonnie kicked him to the curb. But, she never filed for divorce. She probably didn't want to ruin her clean reputation....
- Bonnie met Clyde at a Dallas restaurant she was working at. She was smitten with him right away. But, he got picked up on some previous crimes and was thrown in jail within a few weeks of their courtship. Isn't that always the way it goes? But, Bonnie was not ready to see her "prince charming" go, so she smuggled in a hand gun into prison. Clyde escaped from jail with the aid of that hand gun. Ah, true love conquers all.
- Despite all the scandalous pictures on their bank robbing spree, it's doubtful that Bonnie actually ever shot anyone. But, the pictures of her with a gun and smoking a cigar were media gold. She had a "bad girl" image to uphold and she was going to make it stick. Kind of like Lindsay Lohan. But relevant.
- On May 23, 1934, the couple was killed in a police ambush on a Louisiana road. The car was struck by over 130 bullets. Their bodies were shipped back to Dallas and were put on display for public viewing. Creepy!