Buffalo '66

Buffalo '66 ★★★★★

“Billy, if Buffalo ever makes it back to the Super Bowl, bet against them. Now get the fuck outta my sight.”

I really enjoyed this emotionally unstable, chaotic companion film to Uncut Gems. Lighter on the thrills, bigger on the laughs; and somehow it is strangely heartwarming. Okay, fine, Buffalo ’66 isn’t that similar to Uncut Gems, but Howard Ratner and Billy Brown have similar eccentricities and also can’t be helped with making the big bet on the big game.

If Holden Caulfield was a big Buffalo Bills fan, he’d be Billy Brown. From when Billy is released from prison, to when he abducts Layla to pose as his wife for his parents (who didn’t even know he was in prison), to the various shenanigans and assassination attempts that follow, he’s a boy trapped in a man’s body, insecure and desperate for a meaningful connection.

Where the story could’ve veered off into conventional territory (and it kind of already does), the film makes up for it with its super intriguing and engrossing visual cues. At times it looks like a music video — and I did some reading after, and Vincent Gallo was going for an NFL Films look. The editing is strange at times, but all the while it keeps you on your toes. The way this film showed flashbacks was so refreshing, and you don’t know everything about Billy until about 35-40 minutes in, but when it all clicks, dang, it makes sense and your opinion of the guy really changes (or at least you look at him in a different light). I learned something new about incorporating flashbacks in a script with this movie — I thought it was used spectacularly.

I do applaud Vincent Gallo for all the roles he took up: directing, writing, producing, starring, and scoring. Major points for the chutzpah and the passion, but my lord does he sound like an asshole. I don’t know the guy personally, but won’t be surprised if at the time him and Billy Brown were basically the same guy — and that’s not something to strive for, but hey, we’re all just trying to get better in our own ways, aren’t we?

“If you want a coffee, go get a coffee. Just come back.”

Loved Christina Ricci in this movie. She gave the movie the warmth it so desperately needed at times. Fuck Vincent Gallo for the awful things he said about her after the movie was finished and for not even including her in the end credits? That was really noticeable. Total early-movie Billy Brown move from Vincent Gallo.

The movie balances such strange emotions. It’s incredibly awkward and cringeworthy at times, but this all leads to some really belly-laughing-inducing moments. The photo booth scene that “spans time,” ahh, that’s genius. It’s an independent film marvel. Keep your audience on their toes with a good script & passion, and that surpasses any big budget you may think you need.

Took a break from Spooktober 👻, sue me.

“We’re the couple that doesn’t touch each other!”

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