There was a sad barometer on the state of affairs with the moviegoing public on Friday night. It happened at Queensway Theatre where the 9:40 showing of Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri was being played. This film has just recently been released (and was a standout at TIFF as Alison reported on). I am saddened to say that if there were 15 people in this theatre I would be shocked. I can only imagine how many had gone out to see Thor! Sadly a film that is likely a Best Movie contender and well acted with a quality cast and script, is overlooked at the box office. In the end, that is what Hollywood cares about. And the script/screenplay is marvelous. The generous sprinkling of profanity throughout it, even with younger members of the cast was funny. Without repeating your review and the high level plots aspects, for me I liked that each character is shown in shades of grey. Neither is completely good nor bad. It shows that we all can have our moments. Many top news stories on the tip of tongues are covered (like racial issues, the media, news, brutality, homosexuality, broken families etc) are all covered. There are some stereotypes, like with young women and older men, but it does not play falsely. In the end, small town America takes it on the chin while sending a message to us all. I note that Sam Rockwell does an excellent job playing despicable characters. He has redneck down so well, from the haircut on down. Also I like Woody Harrelson a great deal here, as I did in War for the Planet of the Apes where he channeled Robert Duvall in Apocalypse Now so very well. He plays a character that could be a caricature with some more depth and understanding. I really liked this film, and Karen and I spoke about it at length after it was over and the next day. There should be more movies like this, and encouragement for them to be made.
I re-watched on Netflix Field of Dreams, and this movie holds up well. Like Shawshank, it is a feel good movie that keeps its emotional impact. I like the characters and even though I don’t feel that Amy Madigan is a great actress, she does a good job here playing the wife who tolerates and supports her husband’s unusual behavior (even when he is prone to hyperbole like “this may be the last opportunity I have to do something like this”) – -all at the age of 36!!
I also re-watched Star Wars Force Awakens last night to see if I have missed any tidbits and in preparation for The Last Jedi. There is the talk about bringing Rey to the bad dude for her to have her training completed. There is Leia and Han talking about Ben and how he isn’t all bad that “there is light in him”. There was Rey being unwilling to touch Luke’s lightsaber after the first time where she saw the future and the past, but then uses it against Ben. I wonder about her, and the untrained powers that she has, and how she was able to channel them. I also wonder how the First Order recovers from yet another massive technological undertaking being blown up by a small group of individual star fighters (It makes me laugh about the Robot Chicken episode about not having fully paid for the Death Star)