Trudie’s review published on Letterboxd:
Kinda hate myself for loving this as much as I do, because I hate Vincent Gallo. But the first time I watched Buffalo ‘66 when I was 16, it left an indescribable impression on me that I was so grateful for. Since then, it’s like I’ve tried forcing myself to repress my feelings about it after hearing other’s one-dimensional perceptions that the movie romanticizes kidnapping. (I know it’s stupid to let others sway your viewpoint only because they’re claiming it’s problematic, but these are the words of a dumb teen) I didn’t feel that way when I watched it then and rewatching it tonight, I feel confirmed that Layla’s character was in control and consciously deciding to be complicit, likely out of curiosity and empathy for Billy. I’m mad at myself for almost allowing my love for this movie be ruined by others opinions, potential taboos shouldn’t be immediately shunned. It’s similar to the movie Elle, which has been accused to romanticize rape, a judgment I completely disagree with. This may just be one of the reasons these two movies are some of my favorites, it’s their complexity and how they challenge our morals and force us to want to understand the characters minds.
Tonight, the magic of Buffalo ‘66 fluttered over me again and it was nostalgic to realize that it was like a gateway film that led me to seek out more like it in hopes to feel that kind of escape again. It opened up my mind in a different way that I hadn’t experienced before and made me crave challenging films, which has led me to discover many more movies that I love.
My favorite sculpture I made in high school was inspired by this movie. I was in a rut trying to come up with a concept for my portfolio, and I remember sketching out my first little guy right after the movie ended and beginning to work on it in class the next day. That sculpture won me a scholarship and gave me some confidence in myself at a time when I was desperately lacking some. I’m so grateful for deciding to torent a random Christina Ricci movie on my shitty little laptop that night cause hey fuck you Vincent Gallo. I like to think you became a piece of shit after you made this.
But also thank you, because Buffalo ‘66 was a staple of my formative years that helped me realize a couple of my true passions.