LowComDom Performances Presents
Film Review - Where the Buffalo Roam
I really thought I'd like this film. When I read the book Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas I felt it had a twisted Alice in Wonderland feel. And the film version blew me away. But in Where the Buffalo Roam there's a quality missing that I found in the other story.
The story takes place in the late '60's and early '70's. Thompson is a writer for a San Francisco magazine, and Lazlo is an attorney who defends hippies. Thompson is using the system to surround himself with fun people, liquor and drugs. Lazlo is attempting to use the system against itself. In a way, these two are opposites. One is avoiding the system, the other driving head long into it.
The problem may be that Peter Boyle's portrayal of Carl Lazlo, Esq. is over-powering Bill Murray as Hunter S. Thompson. In Fear and Loathing Lazlo was more of a side-kick and Thompson was the driver of the narrative. But in Buffalo Thompson hasn't come into his own. He's trying to play it safe in many scenes. It's Lazlo who is giving the finger to the establishment, and dragging Thompson along.
Ultimately, I came to the same question I found at the end of Fear and Loathing. Considering the psychological pain the drugs appear to have on Thompson, why does he continue to do them? I can't sympathize with the characterization of Thompson. In fact in this story, it's Lazlo I admire.
As much as I'd like to recommend this film, I really can't. A movie review is about evaluating whether the film is worth the audience's time and money. Where the Buffalo Roam left me flat, wanting my ninety minutes back.
Directed by Art Linson
Released in 1980
MPAA Rating: R
Reviewed by Mongo