Bonnie and Clyde - Before You Watch: Discussion Questions

  1. Who are some typical American heroes/heroines? What qualities define the American hero/heroine?
  2. How does the media sensationalize current events? Can you think of a recent example?
  3. Look up the word potency in your dictionaries. How does this word relate to a) sex b) power? How are sex and power related?
  4. What was the accepted role for women in the 1930s? How did this role begin to change in the 1960s? How has American society coped with these changes?
  5. Consistently, in American culture, we run into the idea of people trapped by social class. In what ways are poor Americans trapped? Do you believe in the American ideal that if people work hard enough/try hard enough, the can overcome their personal backgrounds? Did people generally believe this in the 1930s? What about the 1960s? Today?
  6. In you opinion, who or what is responsible for violence in American culture? Do you believe that the American media encourages violence? If so, in what ways is this true?
  7. This movie deals with a number of crucial American themes/issues. Make sure you understand these ideas and can discuss the following: poverty, the Great Depression, independence, rebellion against authority, sex and power, violence and the media, and heroism. Also, please remember these ideas as you watch the film.
  8. Here are a few slang terms/idioms from the movie.
    • To level with someone to tell someone the truth honestly and directly
    • The law the police or the local authority
    • Ain't contracted form of am not/are not (dialectical)
    • To be in the money to be rich
    • Folks people, especially ordinary people

Related Articles