Thursday, February 8, 2018

Three Billboards Outside, Ebbing, Missouri: Monday, January 29 2018

Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri was even better the second time I saw it. I laughed out loud, I was deeply moved, I was surprised, I was engaged emotionally. I liked the characters. I LOVED the film.

I really liked Mildred Hayes, the mother who rented the three billboards to advertise the lack of police action in finding her daughter's rapist and killer. What a face has Frances McDormand! I was drawn to her immediately. It was clear that she was suffering a deep sorrow, yet wasn't lying down to it. She has a legitimate complaint against the local police force, and was determined to express it publicly, to try to produce some action. I admired her fighting spirit.

I also liked Sheriff Bill Willoughby, the police Chief. He explains to Mildred, so carefully, his difficulties in trying to find the killer with so little to go on. We see him as a loving husband and father, and I felt for him. He was a lovely teddy bear of a man, and I admired his strength and courage.

I actively disliked Jason Dixon at the beginning of the film, then felt a certain sympathy for him when we met his mother. By the end of the movie, he had grown up and matured so much, I liked him. It pleased me to see that the ending has been set up for a sequel. I look forward to it.

The direction and screenplay by Martin McDonagh are excellent, and this allows his actors to be superb. The music by Carter Burwell is so appropriate and adds greatly to the film. But this is true of so many films. What makes this film stand out, in my opinion, is that it has been written with the audience in mind. The story is intriguing; the characters are all real human beings whom we can admire, and with whom we can sympathize; none of these people is a loser. Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri is billed as a crime drama. It is totally entertaining, and never underestimates the intelligence of the audience. In my opinion, it ought to win the Oscar for Best Film produced to entertain its audiences and give them their money's worth.

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