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October 1, 2022 | Rome, Italy

Buffalo ’66

By | 2018-03-21T18:38:30+01:00 October 21st, 2009|Reviews|


Date: 1998

Director: Vincent Gallo

Starring: Vincent Gallo, Christina Ricci, Anjelica Huston, Ben Gazzara, Mickey Rourke, Rosanna Arquette

Vincent Gallo’s pent-up ferocity for once does him in exceptionally good stead. Just-released con Billy Brown (Gallo) decides it’s time to go home to Buffalo. Problem is, he’s lied to his parents about his five-year “absence,” writing them letters about a successful career and wife. Solution: Kidnap a girl to play his wife. He does, violently nabbing China-doll Layla (teenaged Christina Ricci) from a dance class. When she falls for him, you’d think Gallo was playing a Stockholm Syndrome card, but wait.

Turns out his blue-collar parents (Anjelica Huston and Ben Gazzarra, both superb) couldn’t care less about him, or her. Mom still rues a missed field goal that cost the Buffalo Bills a Super Bowl title, Dad’s a cruel loser, and Billy (named after the team) still owes bookie money over the lost game. So Billy decides its time to do something right for a change: Hunt down and kill Scott Norwood, who player missed the infamous kick.

Once Gallo gets Billy home, the narrative turns into a grim but bleakly funny account of a misfit, self-despising man who wants most to impress his parents and win their love, a trait they’re obviously incapable of manifesting. He vilifies kidnapped precocious Layla because she’s the only person who does care. The two are absurdly perfect. Everything about ’66 has autobiography’s fine-tuned venom: It should; Gallo’s from Buffalo.

About the Author:

A military brat, Marcia Yarrow was born in Hamburg, Germany but grew up in Germany, Spain, and Provo, Utah. She's been writing for the magazine since its creation in 2004.

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