The ending of Thelma and Louise still can give you a kick of adrenaline and optimism three decades later. And to commemorate a special anniversary, stars Susan Sarandon and Geena Davis recreated the kiss between best friends.
You remember Thelma and Louise, right? It was a female buddy/empowerment/action movie that was equal parts drama and comedy. The two women started out on a weekend girls’ trip. Through a series of events, they evolve from meek and timid women into accidental robbers and vigilantes in control of their own lives. At the end of the movie, as they are running from a helicopter and a phalanx of cop cars, Thelma and Louise decide not to give up.
In fact, Thelma and Louise opted to continue the journey in Louise’s vintage blue Ford Thunderbird convertible and jump the Grand Canyon. The two kiss, then Louise hits the gas pedal and floors it. Arkansas State Police Det. Hal Slocumb (Harvey Keitel) chases after them. He was sympathetic to what happened to them throughout the movie.
Did Thelma and Louise Survive the Jump?
Presumably, the two women don’t survive the jump. But the movie ends as the car sails into the canyon. You always want to believe Thelma (Geena Davis) and Louise (Susan Sarandon) did manage to stay alive. And you rooted for them to live the life they deserved, instead of the crappy one circumstances dealt them. At a minimum, they died free and in control.
“When we were filming Thelma and Louise thirty years ago, we had no idea the kind of cultural impact it would continue to have for decades,” Susan Sarandon, aka Louise, told the Hollywood Reporter. “At the time, it was revolutionary to have two women in a film that weren’t enemies and were having fun together on screen. I think that’s been one of the biggest breakthroughs — today there are so many brilliant female actors making films where women aren’t adversarial to each other and have the power to determine their own destiny.”
Susan Sarandon and Geena Davis Recreated the Kiss
On Friday night, Sarandon and Davis appeared at a Q & A and screening of the movie to honor the film’s 30th anniversary at The Greek Theater in Los Angeles.
And as part of the celebration, the two Oscar winners recreated the final kiss scene in Thelma and Louise. Callie Khouri, who wrote the screen play, also was there to look back at what made the movie so successful. Khouri won an Academy Award for the movie’s screen play. In 2016, the Library of Congress added the movie to the National Film Registry.
While the movie was about female empowerment, the film also jump-started the career of Brad Pitt, who played a drifter who hooked up with Thelma.
The movie premiered on May 24, 1991. And earlier this month, Geena Davis also talked about Thelma and Louise with the Hollywood Reporter.
“What was so striking was the intense reaction to the film,” Davis said. “Thelma and Louise end up driving off a cliff, and still viewers felt exhilarated by their story. It made me realize how few opportunities we give women to come out of a movie feeling inspired and empowered by the female characters. It changed everything about how I chose roles moving forward.”