Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri [2017] ★★½

I’ve been a huge Martin McDonagh fan for at least a decade now. His movie “In Bruges” won me over completely and I still have fond memories of his underrated “Seven Psychopaths”. That being said, I didn’t fully appreciate his latest film, “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”, despite its critical acclaim (and the fact that it was nominated for 7 Oscars). Everyone is different I guess, and while a lot of critics heaped praise on it, I have to respectfully disagree. I’ll say this though: Frances McDormand is sensational as a mother who takes matters into her own hands when the local police couldn’t solve the murder of her young daughter. The police chief (Woody Harrelson, as good as always) has done his very best, but not enough according to the grieving mother, who decides to rent three billboards outside the small town to express her anger. The premise doesn’t look or sound like anything I’ve seen this year, and I have to admire McDonagh’s efforts to put a stamp on everything he does. But after a while, my mind started to wander. While this unusual story is well acted and meticulously crafted, down to the tiniest detail, it’s not a film that I loved. Aside from McDormand’s character, I just couldn’t sympathize with anyone else. And when it was time for the climax, I had already lost interest in the story. I admire and respect what McDonagh and his collaborators have created. They’ve given us a unique moviegoing experience, and that’s no small achievement. I just have to be honest with my reaction: I didn’t love “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”.

2 replies »

  1. What??? This movie and the shape of water are tied as my favourites from last year mostly because of the lead female performances. How did you lose interest in it?
    I remember when Inception came out, I wasn’t in the mood of watching a movie so I didn’t focus that much on it. I walked out half way through but I didn’t trash it. Watched again a couple of days later and it’s one of my favourite sci-fi movies ever. I recommend you do the same with three Billboards.
    The only thing I wish they included in this movie is to show how exactly the daughter was raped and murdered.

    • I get you Nizar. I’m a big McDonagh fan but this movie just didn’t click with me. It happens. A lot of Oscar nominated movies have disappointed me in the past so it’s nothing against the movie itself. Frances McDormand was terrific though!

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