Depression-era gangsters Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow have already made indelible marks on pop culture, inspiring works ranging from the 1967 movie “Bonnie and Clyde” (now recognized as a turning point in the history of Hollywood) to a Serge Gainsbourg song with the same title (performed in a forever-cool duet with Brigitte Bardot) to a Bugs Bunny cartoon (“Bunny and Claude”). So you may reasonably wonder if A&E’s “Bonnie and Clyde: Dead and Alive,” which will be simulcast on three cable channels on December 8 and 9, is a bridge too far.
Two words: Bruce Beresford. The fact that he directed the two-part miniseries about the notorious couple may not guarantee excellence, but it makes the latest “Bonnie and Clyde” worth checking out. And if it fails to measure up, you can always go back to the original on Netflix. Or better yet, order Beresford’s early-’80s masterpieces “Breaker Morant” and “Tender Mercies,” both still brilliant three decades later. — John Birmingham