Fritz Lang's 1939 film about an outlaw couple on the run (Henry Fonda and Sylvia Sidney) is sometimes cited as one of the prototypes of Bonnie and Clyde
. But Lang's themes are moral and mystical whereas Penn's are social; Lang's film, consequently, seems more genuinely timeless despite the topicality of the story. Lang directs in a stripped-down expressionist style that had a tremendous influence on the postwar film noir: it's always night, usually raining, and the camera hovers over the characters like the heavy hand of fate. 86 min.