During the course of watching movies in the gangster genre, one will encounter characters that are very different but similar in various ways, in respect to their motives and their beliefs. Rocky Sullivan from the movie Angels with Dirty Faces and Clyde Boner from Bonnie and Clyde are such characters. They are outwardly different, yet they have similar views and do what they have to do in order to get by.
Rocky Sullivan gives the outward impression of being a real tough guy, and he is, but at times he appears to be nothing more than a great friend to his child hood friend Jerry Connelly, who also happens to be a priest. Growing up wild with no male guidance, Rocky and Jerry always got into one scrape after another until one day, Rocky got caught and finally wound up in the government institution. It is in this institution and later on in jail that Rocky learns the "tricks of the trade". Rocky's main motivation throughout the film is to get his money and go one with his life with as little complications as possible. Unfortunately nothing ever really goes as planned. .
Clyde Boner is an easy going pretty boy who takes nothing too seriously and give others the impression of being a tough Gangster, which he isn't. Apparently Clyde and his brother use to be in it together for the sheer purpose of amusement. This soon came to an end when Clyde was arrested for armed robbery and sent to jail. Upon his release it appeared that Clyde was pretty much attempting to ease back into his old life and then he met Bonnie. With this meeting Clyde was goaded by Bonnie to prove how tough he was, and simply to impress her, he did, and was thrust right back into his old ways.
Sullivan's driving need and motivation is to re-attain his money which is being held for him so generously, but along the way he is also greatly influenced by his best friend Jerry Connelly, the priest. By allowing this outside force to guide some of his actions, Rocky is in a sense opening up to change and willing to try thing he never thought of doing before.