Combustible Celluloid
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With: Susan Sarandon, Geena Davis, Brad Pitt, Harvey Keitel, Michael Madsen, Stephen Tobolowsky, Christopher McDonald, Timothy Carhart, Lucinda Jenney, Jason Beghe, Sonny Carl Davis, Ken Swofford, Shelly Desai, Carol Mansell, Stephen Polk
Written by: Callie Khouri
Directed by: Ridley Scott
MPAA Rating: R
Running Time: 129
Date: 24/05/1991

Thelma and Louise (1991)

4 Stars (out of 4)

She-Devils on Wheels

By Jeffrey M. Anderson

Of Ridley Scott's thirteen feature films, at least three of them are four-star films, which is more than any director can reasonably ask for. He has a lush, serene visual sense that's best viewed in his darker films, Alien, Blade Runner and the underrated Hannibal. But he also has a hysterical side that comes unhinged when working with more "important" material like 1492: The Conquest of Paradise, G.I. Jane, Gladiator and Black Hawk Down. (Gladiator in particular is one of the most brutally awful films ever made.)

Which is why Thelma and Louise is such a perfect balance for him. Completely unlike any of his other films, Thelma and Louise tells the now-infamous story of two women, fed-up with their boyfriends/husbands, their jobs, and their lives in particular. They hit the open road in a convertible and begin to discover their womanly power for the first time. Intoxicated, they push the envelope to a point from which they can never return.

Susan Sarandon and Geena Davis both excel at their roles (written by Callie Khouri), and Scott allows them the space they need. He even lets his camera gaze and sigh at young Brad Pitt, who captures the women's attention and awakens their sexual appetites. Scott seems most at home when shooting the exterior scenes on the desert highways, using the area as both inviting and deadly. The film has been claimed as both feminist and anti-feminist, and it has as many passionate fans as it does violent detractors. It's still a great film.

MGM has released a new Blu-Ray edition for the film's 20th anniversary. Ridley Scott provides one commentary track, and there's a second one by Davis, Sarandon and Khouri. Scott discusses an alternate cut of the ending. There are also deleted and extended scenes, featurettes, a multi-angle storyboard feature, a music video, and trailers.

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