Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid

Year: 1969
Production Co: Campanile Productions
Studio: 20th Century Fox
Director: George Roy Hill
Writer: William Goldman
Cast: Paul Newman, Robert Redford, Katharine Ross, Cloris Leachman
For such a classic movie nothing could have prepared me for how dull this film was. It was like a smaller scale David Lean epic, but without the visual spectacle to go with the sparseness in the script and action.

Watching Butch and Sundance ride and finally walk across the desert panhandle while the enigmatic clique of lawmen follow their every movie over the course of (what felt like) 20 minutes hasn't nearly the impact of watching Omar Sharif emerge from the desert haze to the well where T E Lawrence awaits.

It's based on the true story of the titular outlaws, though I have no idea how much. They blazed a reign of bank-robbing terror across America before the heat got too much in the guise of the aforementioned posse, using seemingly supernatural tracking ability to trail Butch and Sundance through the desert.

Taking the woman with whom they share a strange three way love affair (Ross) they hightail it to Bolivia, where the living is supposed to be easy, but where they have to carve out a new niche for themselves, one that leads them right back to bank robbing.

Only now, much bigger fish in a much smaller pond, Butch and Sundance find themselves holed up in a hacienda while legions of Bolivian army troops take up position outside to mow them down in the arresting final image.

George Roy Hill's film didn't seem to be saying much about either the western, morality or the nature of the relationships involved, and the 1960s heart-throb leads reteamed to much better effect in The Sting.

Also a little dated. Did Hill portray the extended holiday the trio explained prior to their South American escapade as a silent movie of photographs because there wasn't the money or production wherewithal to actually film any of it?

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