Michael Chantiri 🎃’s review published on Letterboxd:
A love story that doesn't really get enough attention, the concept of a deplorable human being connecting with a sweet, emotionally vulnerable young woman. They are at two opposite ends of the spectrum yet there's a spiritual force that pulls them together. One that isn't fully acknowledged until the bathroom scene where Billy has a mental breakdown.
It's from there he realises the person he has become and starts to work towards a better version of himself. Through Layla he has emotional support and this allows him to have the strength to carry on. The scene where they are lying in the bed is where the two souls meet and are joined in a bond you only get when two people are in love with each other.
Nothing excuses the abuse Billy dishes out in the first half but there's a glimmer of hope, Layla is kinda that salvation. The two aren't perfect but so isn't love and I feel like this is what the film is paying tribute to. The common couple that have contempt for each other but something sticks them together, something unexplainable, almost like magic and this film hits that concept with full force.
Beautiful film in the sense it dares the audience to find the euphoria in the depraved and says that there's a way to go beyond even our worst tendencies. A film that hits me so hard on a personal level and I'm so glad to have it in my life.