Film Review – Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri (2017): Eddie’s Take

Title: Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri (2017)

Director: Martin McDonagh (In Bruges)

Cast: Frances McDormand, Sam Rockwell, Woody Harrelson, Caleb Landry Jones, Abbie Cornish, Lucas Hedges

Plot: As the tragic murder of her teenage daughter remains unsolved, angry and determined mother Mildred Hayes (McDormand) sets up three billboards on a road outside her small town of Ebbing to alert the public of the status of her daughters case, whilst questioning the towns police department efforts.

“You didn’t happen to drill a “little” hole in the dentist today, did you?”

Review by Eddie on 18/01/2018

For Jordan’s take on the film CLICK HERE

If there’s a certainty at this year’s upcoming Oscar’s, other than an abundance of black dresses and a Gary Oldman acceptance speech, it’s going to be Frances McDormand collecting her second career Academy Award for Best Actress for her brilliant and captivating turn as grieving and fiery mother Mildred Hayes.

The central figure of Irish filmmaker Martin McDonagh’s newest outing as writer/director, Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri, McDormand owns every part of her performance as Hayes, a mother who takes matters into her own hands after the brutal death of her teenage daughter and sets up 3 very prominent billboards questioning the police force’s effort to catch her daughter’s killer/s.

The way in which McDormand delivers her lines or expresses so much emotion and humanity without even uttering a single word is as good as your going to see and her and McDonagh seem like a match made in movie making heaven as they collaborate together too make this heavy bleak drama/comedy a cut well above average.

McDormand’s performance is a huge reason why Three Billboard’s is one of the year’s must see films and one of recent times best reviewed features, but McDonagh’s film is also noteworthy for its supporting turns from Woody Harrelson as police chief William Willoughby, who cops the major brunt of Hayes public call outs, while Sam Rockwell is the best he’s been since Moon as loose cannon police officer Dixon.

It’s a hugely impressive ensemble McDonagh has rounded up and it’s little wonder why, as McDonagh’s witty, dark and most importantly emotionally strong writing is as good as a script gets, while it’s great to see a growth in McDonagh’s cinematic sensibilities as Three Billboards is the filmmakers most fully rounded yet, hauntingly picturesque, moodily scored by Coen Brothers usual music muse Carter Burwell and paced perfectly throughout.

The way in which McDonagh is heading after this feature suggests that after his big breakthrough In Bruges in 2008 and the rather disappointing Seven Psychopaths from 2012, he’s ready to make good on all of talent, and it wouldn’t be wrong to compare him to the creativity and rare genius of a fellow director like Quentin Tarantino.

Final say –

Featuring a classic Frances McDormand turn and fabulous support from previous McDonagh cast members Harrelson and Rockwell, this sharply written dark comedy is a unique and memorable experience that’s going to be a big player at the upcoming Oscar’s.

4 1/2 dental tools out of 5

18 responses to “Film Review – Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri (2017): Eddie’s Take

  1. Pingback: Film Review – Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri (2017): Jordan’s Take | Jordan and Eddie (The Movie Guys)·

  2. Love how you and Jordan have relatively different thoughts on this one! I side more with Jordan, I didn’t fall for it all that much but I do find the performances compelling. Going to be interesting to see how this holds up through Oscar time.

    • Yeh mate I was surprised a little how we felt differently on this one but its one of those films I think.
      I don’t expect the film to take home any major awards bar Best Actress and maybe screenplay but its shaping up to be a relatively unpredictable Academy Awards.

  3. I don’t like Tarantino – his movies bore me and feel like copies of other and better stuff – but I do like McDonagh, so I am looking forward to seeing this. It’s great to read your two very different but interesting views of this.

  4. I’m from Missouri originally, and I’m thrilled that this film is earning rave reviews from most film critics. Of course, the movie was not actually filmed in Missouri, but still… Anyway, I do love dark comedies, and will buy this on DVD as soon as it’s available. Thanks for a terrific review!

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