11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on 10 June 2013
Very, very disappointing Blu Ray. Yes it has been given 5.1 sound but the picture has not been cleaned up or improved in any way. It is no better than VHS quality. I am sure, although I have not checked it yet, that my old DVD copy has a better picture than this Blu Ray. Also it is a strange set-up on the disc. It went straight into the film with no Menu first and then when it had finished and had shown the Copyright Warning message, it started the film again as if it is on a loop. There must be a Menu as otherwise I do not know how you access the 'extras' but just haven't had a chance to investigate yet. All in all, for such a film classic, this has been given really poor treatment. If you have this on DVD already then don't bother with this Blu Ray. I just hope that at some point before I leave this Earth that a version is brought out that the film deserves.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
`Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid' is a western that's not a western. In fact it is more of a buddy movie set in the west and later Bolivia. This follows the two main characters of the film title as they rob various trains, banks and payroll caravans throughout America and Bolivia and how they flee a gang of lawmen who are hunting them down. The interplay between Newman and Redford is completely absorbing and the humour they bring to their roles is subtle and infectious. The story is pretty basic but carried out with real aplomb and even though not being a huge fan of westerns, I found myself completely captivated by this film. The scene where they are trying to rob a Bolivian bank with limited knowledge of Spanish is hilarious and the part where they are initially being tracked by the lawmen is full of suspense and is full of tension the whole time. The direction in this film is great and the acting is superb from all involved and the chemistry between Newman and Redford is obvious throughout. If you are yet to see this classic film then it is well worth buying at some point. It is extremely well made and required viewing for fans of cinema and should be in any discerning film collection.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
This film hasn’t aged at all! The two sidekicks are just as pleasing on the eye as they were back in 1969. This is a great film and real classic of that era. The scenery in the film is to die for, no wonder the cinematography won an ‘AA.’ The script is pitch perfect, witty, and without sentimentality. The picture quality on the standard DVD is average. Redford got the Oscar for best actor ahead of Newman!
Robert Leroy Parker (Butch Cassidy) & Harry Alonzo Longaugh (Sundance) were real outlaws, of similar ages, and were robbing trains etc., nearing the end of our ‘Victorian period.’
I must admit that I could remember very few of the details from the film after all these years, except the bike ride & song, and the cliff jump of course. I’d totally forgotten that they fled to Bolivia where they so called met their end … just as Che Guevara had done in 1967!
This is still a top film and very captivating – Newman and Redford are just full of charisma and the film has a very good storyline and keeps you there throughout. You can’t beat quality?
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid is one of the greatest westerns ever made.
The on screen chemistry between Newman and Redford is legendary.
The film is exciting, funny, brilliantly acted, superbly directed, and beautifully shot.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on 6 April 2014
This is it. One of the few movies that achieves absolute perfection.
Three stars at the height of their skills, Newman and Redford obviously, and Katherine Ross, once very wisely described as "ridiculously pretty".
From the opening sequence with its transition from sepia to colour, through to the end where we're grateful not to be shown the inevitable, this never dreams of so much as thinking about putting a toe out of place. Butch's irrepressible optimism and ideas, Sundance's dourness, it is just flippin' perfect. The ultimate bickering buddy movie.
In your monthly re-watching of this (surely anything less deserves a jail sentence), there is always some new point to see.
The humour throughout is magnificent, usually leading from Butch, and the great, great lines. "You, uh think you used enough dynamite thar, Butch ?", "Rules? In a knife fight ? No rules", "somebody say one, two, three, go!", "You can't swim, are you crazy? The fall's gonna kill you !", all misquoted a bit, and I don't really watch it every month, but....
I can't really have a single favourite movie, but I do have a top shelf. No movie deserves a place on there more than this. If "Desert Island Discs" did movies, this is one of the six.
23 of 29 people found the following review helpful
on 26 May 2004
How do you ensure somebody's legacy as a hero? In the good old days, you wrote a book. Nowadays, you make a movie - and if you're lucky and it's really, really successful, you can retrospectively even make legends out of dangerous criminals. Not that that always works, of course. But with two great actors with instant chemistry (Paul Newman and Robert Redford), a script (by William Goldman) bursting with one-liners making the audience bowl over laughing every other minute, without once derailing into slapstick, a director's (George Roy Hill's) ingenious use of the occasion to turn a whole genre on its head, and some of the world's most beautiful locations, filmed by an exceptional cinematographer (Conrad Hall) ... you just may pull it off. Case in point: "Butch and Sundance."
While Butch Cassidy (Robert LeRoy Parker) was known as the Old West's Robin Hood for his charm, masterly planning, avoidance of bloodshed - he really did claim he'd never shot anyone - and his stance for settlers' rights vis-a-vis the wealthy cattle barons, Sundance (Henry Longbaugh) had the reputation of a loner; a fast draw repeatedly in and out of prison before even turning twenty-one. After several of their Wild Bunch/Hole in the Wall Gang associates had seen the short end of the stick in various encounters with the law, Butch and Sundance determined things were getting too hot in the West and, unlike the outlaws who not much earlier had stood it out until the end (Billy the Kid, the James Gang and the O.K. Corral gunfighters), decided to head for South America. With a woman named Etta Place, possibly a teacher as portrayed here or, perhaps more likely, a prostitute, they first spent several years farming in Argentina - both had done cattle work before turning to robbery, although in the form of rustling (stealing unbranded cattle) - but eventually reverted to their more profitable, preferred occupation. Most sources believe they died in a 1909 shootout with the Bolivian military in a town named San Vicente; others, however, claim either or both escaped alive, returned to the States under assumed names and died there (Sundance in Casper, WY in 1957 and Cassidy, according to his sister, in Spokane, WA, in 1937).
Although their decision to leave the West instead of duking it out with the law and the mystery surrounding their deaths would already have made for a great movie, director Hill cleverly used the material for a 180-degree-turn on the Western genre. The opening credits roll next to sepia-tinged silent shots depicting a Hole in the Wall Gang train robbery, followed by the bold claim that "most of what follows is true" - which in itself couldn't be further from the truth. What does follow is a wild ride from the Outlaw Trail to Bolivia ... during which our heroes aren't getting rid of their pursuers, no Western music with guitars and harmonicas accompanies them but Burt Bacharach's multiple-award-winning, deliberately anachronistic, upbeat score (plus "Raindrops Are Falling on My Head" during the most romantic scene - raindrops???), a knife fight is settled by a kick in the groin, and a marshal trying to assemble a posse first meets with a lackluster population, neither willing to bring their own horses and guns nor clamoring to be supplied with such by him, and in short order sees his meeting usurped by a bicycle salesman. Add to that Oscar-winning cinematography, repeatedly using black-and-white lighting techniques even after the film's switch to color (e.g. in Sundance's first visit with Etta), reverse lighting to make daytime shots look like nighttime (during several scenes of the pursuit) and sepia-tinted shots for period feeling (besides the opening, also to sum up the trio's stay in New York), a Bolivian bank robbery with a crib sheet containing "specialized vocabulary" that Butch, contrary to initial claims, doesn't know in Spanish, and an immortalizing freeze-frame ending - and you have one heck of an entertaining movie, shot in some of the West's most spectacular settings and in Mexico (as Bolivia's stand-in).
"Butch and Sundance" turned Redford into a megastar - Hill lobbied hard for the then-perceived "playboy"'s casting, and his instincts proved so dead-on that Newman's entourage became worried the movie's expected primary star would be sidelined (a feeling never shared by Newman himself, though, who has been friends with Redford ever since). In a twist worthy of Goldman's Oscar-winning screenplay, fearsome loner Sundance became one of Redford's most popular roles, and his independent film festival's namesake. The movie renewed popular interest in the Outlaw Trail, which Redford himself traveled later, too (chronicled in a fascinating, alas out-of-print book). Its script is littered with memorable one-liners; from both heroes' "Who *are* those guys??" to Butch's comments on the small price to pay for beauty, on Sundance's gun-prowess ("like I've been telling you - over the hill"), on vision, bifocals and Bolivia, on Sundance's asking Etta (Katherine Ross) to accompany them, although if she'll ever "whine or make a nuisance," he'll be "dumping her flat" ("Don't sugarcoat it like that, Kid ... tell her straight!") and his downplaying the final shootout because their archenemy LaForce isn't there; Sundance's "You just keep thinking, Butch," his comments on the secret of his gambling success (prayer), on not being picky about women (followed by a litany of required attributes), on the excessive use of dynamite, and his one weakness ("I can't swim!!"); and finally Strother Martin/mine-owner Percy Garris's deadpan delivery of the Shanghai Rooster song, of "Morons ... I've got morons on my team" and his assertion not to be crazy but merely colorful. The famous freeze-frame ending has repeatedly been cited, both cinematographically (e.g. "Thelma and Louise") and in dialogue (e.g. 1998's "Negotiator"). And although initially almost uniformly panned by critics, the movie won quadruple Oscars and multiple other awards. In true Hollywood fashion, it has made two fearsome outlaws legends forever ... and in the process, also won legendary status itself.
8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on 17 October 2001
Words cannot do justice to this film. Watch it a hundred times and it's still fresh. Redford and Newman were born to play these roles. The scenery drips off the screen with vitality and colour. The script it pure gold. The two characters are wonderful. Even the hokey 'Raindrops Keep Fallin' On My Head' works as if by alchemy. Buy this, settle down with a bottle of wine, recall your childhood when it was shown at Christmas and for a few sunlit hours you'll feel like a kid again. And then there's the ending and the eternal question... Did they survive that damn shootout? Your answer reveals who you really are. A one in a million. Bravo!
27 of 34 people found the following review helpful
on 6 May 2002
This is one of my favourite films of all time but I am not happy with this conversion to DVD.
Fine, you get lots of great extras but the film itself has been destroyed.
Different parts of the film appear to have been taken from different film stock with some parts showing faulty colour saturation and even some film flaws such as badly corrected scratches [I am not referring to the scenes and sections where such things are a part of the film].
The more evocative sections where there are soft focus and hazy lighting effects have been utterly ruined...for example when the apple is picked from he tree during the bicyle scene there is colour blocking that gives the appearance of several heavy colour halos instead of a gradation of hazy colour. Frequently the resolution is poor and grainy.
Latter parts of the DVD appear to come from a better print because colour and detail are excellent.
Sound is also quite patchy
A wonderful fillm has been very badly and lazily converted.
on 8 April 2015
The movie that invented the buddy-buddy genre.Newman and Redford are dynamic as the outlaws robbing trains/banks, keeping one step ahead of the posse,wooing Katherine Ross and finally meeting their showdown in Bolivia.Along the way their some business on a bicycle to the strains of Bacharach/Davids Raindrops keep falling on my head,a leap from a canyon into the water to escape a posse and a spot of lotus eating thats beautifully photographed in sepia.The script by William Goldman is impeccable as is Conrad Halls cinematography and George Roy Hills direction.The final shot is probably the most famous freeze-frame in cinema history.Who are those guys?
18 of 23 people found the following review helpful
on 29 June 2000
Butch Cassidy and The Sundance Kid clasps hands with the French New Wave and waltzes it off to the rugged Utah mountains. Centered on the triangular relationship between the ever-charming Butch, monosyllabic, fast-shooting Sundance and the melancholy, haunting Etta Place, one look at this picture tells you more than three years at any film school could about film-making. For beginners, the tough, lyrical screenplay relies on visuals rather than dialogue to tell the tale. Researched from the obscure, true story by the soon-to-be-legendary Bill Goldman, it seduces and delights with economy and humour. And don't forget, for a film of this kind there is almost no shooting, no melodrama and, perhaps bravest of all, two heroes that actually run away. And yet never does the film drag. The fast, zooming cinematography is drenched in the golden haze of the Wasatch mountains, before it shifts via sepia stills to the hostile Bolivian hills and the inevitable denouement. Throughout, the action is accompanied by the unusual, unforgettable and now classic Burt Bacharach soundtrack.
The work satisfies on every level, but is transformed into something extraordinary by the restrained, charmed performances of Redford, Newman and Ross. It launched a thousand imitators, but no equals. Rarely does Hollywood deliver such gold, so see it and fall in love, like Butch and Sundance, with an era that really never was.