Requiem for Billy the Kid


Requiem for Billy the Kid

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Average Rating: 3.2/5

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Movie Info

The French fascination with the American Old West lives and breathes again in Anne Feinsilber's idiosyncratic documentary Requiem for Billy the Kid.Feinsilber travels to Lincoln, New Mexico for an incisive investigation of the rumor that Billy (AKA William Bonney - the most notorious outlaw of the 19th Century) in fact withdrew from villainry, slipped into a quiet, anonymous domestic lifestyle and lived to a ripe old age. Onetime Lincoln County sheriff Tom Sullivan appears onscreen and discusses, at length his own arduous, fruitless efforts to have Bonney's bones exhumed for a DNA test that will validate or permanently disprove this theory. Feinsilber then gathers a bunch of grizzled old local residents (cowboy types, all) and has them stage an onscreen reenactment of the killing of local storeowner John Tunstall, which incited the Lincoln County War. Throughout, Feinsilber draws constant parallels between Bonney's exploits and the poetry of the 19th century Gallic avant-garde poet Arthur Rimbaud - making hers the first film in history to do so. Kris Kristofferson, who played Bonney in the Sam Peckinpah classic Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid, narrates the film in-character, while Claire Diterzi contributes a new cover of "Knockin' on Heaven's Door" to the soundtrack.


Critic Reviews for Requiem for Billy the Kid

All Critics (3) | Top Critics (2)

  • A treat for fans of western movies and anyone interested in myths of the Old West.

    May 30, 2006
  • Feinsilber builds the bond between Billy and Rimbaud by arguing that, while one used a gun, the other a quill, both ended their careers at 21, the outlaw by death and the poet by ceasing to write. OK.

    May 20, 2006

    Todd McCarthy

    Top Critic

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