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Billy the Kid2007

  • 4.5
Jennifer Venditti's award-winning documentary is a provocative coming-of-age story (an odyssey into the soul of an American teenager). Following fifteen-year-old Billy as he bicycles through the quiet streets of small town Maine, we watch him traverse the frustrating gap between imagination and reality, grappling with isolation and first-time young love. By turns exhilarating and disturbing, we see the world from the intimate view of an expressive and seemingly fearless outsider.

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"Watching Billy try to orient himself in a world that makes no sense makes you wonder how any of us ever did." - David Edelstein, NY Magazine


2 members like this review

One of the best documented and honest portrayals of teenage love I have ever seen in a film. An unflinching look at a young boy, undaunted by challenge, making a life with little to work with, yet creating beauty and understanding.

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Member Reviews (5)

228895.small
top reviewer

One of the best documented and honest portrayals of teenage love I have ever seen in a film. An unflinching look at a young boy, undaunted by challenge, making a life with little to work with, yet creating beauty and understanding.

2 members like this review

An exceptionally humane, compassionate portrait of an unusually mature teenage boy aching for love, finding it briefly, losing it with irrepressible ardor, and moving on. An extraordinary young man and a beautiful documentary.

When I was 15 living in a small town in the early 50s, I was far less innocent and naive than Billy, although he lived in an even much smaller town than I did—perhaps that’s the reason. I must say though that I was impressed by his polite and caring attitude. It would be interesting to see where his head is at when he’s 16 or 17.

The film captures the coming-of-age sub-genre in it's purest sense. It only took me a few minutes into the film to be captivated by Billy's charm, intelligence, sweet and sensitive spirit. If only there would been a follow up film to see how he's grown up now. Billy's that fascinating of a human.

An authentic kid, one of the best. This is a documentary that struck deep into the heart of why teenage years can be simultaneously beautiful and cruel. It follows the life of Billy as he pursues a girlfriend and seeks advice from his mother, along with musings of his own, navigating life with pure heart and honesty.

On a personal note, this is not just a film to me anymore. I don't know these people and we could not be more apart, but we are forever linked. I am too moved to make sense. Thank you, Fandor.