Billy the Kid (2007)



Critic Consensus: Jennifer Venditti's doc Billy the Kid turns "special" into a double edged sword, forging a sharply honest film around a strangely enigmatic -- if awkward -- kid named Billy.

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"Billy the Kid" is a sensitive and verite portrait of Billy, a 15 year-old outsider growing up in small-town Maine. Billy appears, in many ways, like other teenage boys. He's into heavy metal and martial arts, is desperate to find a girlfriend, and aspires to a career as an actor and rock star. Yet, in other ways Billy is unique. A troubled past and ongoing behavioral issues have left him marked. But, he is unapologetic about his personality and refuses to be victimized, creating his own techniques to help him survive in an environment of pain, conformity, and prejudice. Billy is funny, sharp, strangely wise for his age, and remarkably candid. We witness life from his perspective - from intimate conversations with his mother, to be bullied at school, to his fantasies of becoming a superhero. We also experience the exhilarating pangs of first love as Billy pursues Heather, a shy 16 year-old waitress. Will Billy get the girl? Will his community accept him on his own terms? "Billy the Kid" challenges viewers to imagine themselves beyond labels.
Documentary , Special Interest
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News & Interviews for Billy the Kid

Critic Reviews for Billy the Kid

All Critics (30) | Top Critics (13)

The best documentaries take you places you don't normally have access to.

Full Review… | February 29, 2008
Detroit Free Press
Top Critic

A raw, touching, unfiltered look at the teenage angst that Hollywood usually turns into brain-dead comedy.

Full Review… | February 8, 2008
Minneapolis Star Tribune
Top Critic

Billy's resilience, though, is nothing short of amazing. Not to mention part of growing up.

Full Review… | February 8, 2008
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic

What you ultimately take from the film is the awareness that this smart, self-aware, uncensored kid has been playing to a camera in his own head since well before Venditti came along.

February 7, 2008
L.A. Weekly
Top Critic

Billy the Kid, a movie that's as interesting as it is dewy-eyed, may be the rare snapshot of an adolescent 'outcast' who is really the guy made for fame, with a built-in radar for how to present himself in front of the camera.

Full Review… | January 9, 2008
Entertainment Weekly
Top Critic

Nobody ever said growing up a small-town geek was easy. I know from personal experience, and so does Billy Price, the subject of director Jennifer Venditti's affecting documentary Billy the Kid.

Full Review… | December 7, 2007
New York Post
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Billy the Kid

I needed a shot of tequila after watching this movie. It is incredible, but if you can sit through it without being as uncomfortable as you've ever been in your life, you're a stronger person than I am. WATCH HIS EYES. I don't think I've ever seen such an up-front kid, unafraid to express what's really going on inside himself. Only in the bonus materials do we learn what's "wrong" with him. Although, I'd argue there's nothing at all wrong with him. If more kids were like him, high school would not be such a cluster f--k experience. I hope there's a follow up, so we can see how Billy grows up.

Don Kaiser
Don Kaiser

VERDICT: 7/10 Wallflowers A fascinating and often uncomfortable look into one very unique kid’s life and the condition he struggles with. - Read the rest of my review at -

Aiden Redmond
Aiden Redmond

Very sweet and endearing documentary with a great subject. I think anyone can relate with the awkwardness. My problem comes with how they dealt with one aspect of his life (his love for a girl) and we only gets bits and pieces of some really nice scenes. I think that to say this kid is "normal" is kind of a stretch, but that's not a bad thing and only adds to a feeling of being voyeuristic instead of just connecting with the subject. There are some priceless, very funny moments that carry you through the rough spots.

Tim Sigur
Tim Sigur

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