Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Bonnie's Kids (1973)

A nasty little noir gem from the golden days of the drive-in, Bonnie's Kids follows the genre formula of detailing the machinations of slippery, manipulative operators as they double-cross one another. Almost nobody in this movie is even slightly reputable. It's lots of fun.

We start off in a crappy small town, where the two daughters of Bonnie (long dead- Mom's name's an attempt to cash in on Bonnie and Clyde), are living with their stepdad; Charlie's a mean old man who can hardly stand how his sexy stepdaughter Myra (Robin Mattson) cock teases the boys in their dead-end town. He tries to rape the girl to teach her a lesson, but her sister Elly (Tiffany Bolling) shoots him dead with a shotgun in the unbelievably sleazy first ten minutes of the movie. They then steal his pickup truck and head for El Paso. Briefly, it looks like it will be a tale of personal growth and liberation. No such luck.

Here, the girls hook up with their Uncle Ben, a rich businessman of some sort, and his spoiled trophy wife, moving into their ranch. The movie here splits into two stories when Elly is sent by her uncle to pick up a package with his employee Larry (Steve Sandor). The package turns out to be $300 thousand, so you can imagine what they decide to do about it and, before long, they're on the run with Uncle Ben's two goons out to kill them. Mayhem ensues on that end. Many people have suggested that the two goons in Bonnie's Kids could have been the model for John Travolta and Samuel L. Jackson's characters in Pulp Fiction. Since Quentin Tarantino's got very few ideas of his own, it's entirely possible, but hard to say for sure. Neither of them has a "Bad Motherfucker" wallet.

Meanwhile back on the ranch, Myra is getting hit on relentlessly by her Aunt, who's clearly a lesbian. She's playing the Aunt and screwing the stable boy instead, although her real interset seems to be stealing whatever she can get from the mansion. We soon realize that she's a heartless tramp, her sister is about the same, and their Uncle is a criminal thug. Along the way, there are plenty of sleazy touches, like when one of the goons goes to kill a woman in a cheap motel but takes the time to spy on her in the shower first. There's also bloodshed, nudity, and good old fashioned nasty behavior. Recommended.

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