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From: luisbunuel <luisbunuel@aol.com>
Subject: Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri
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Date: Sun, 3 Dec 2017 22:14:36 -0800 (PST)
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Subject: Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri
From: luisbunuel@aol.com
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This is unquestionably a good film that traffics in its characters' moral ambiguities. As I watched
it, I couldn't help thinking: this what a Sam Shepherd play would be like if it were good (True West
excepted). Or even a Tracy Letts play. It's closer to Flannery O'Connor, who is referenced early by
the book the billboard salesman--very nicely acted by Caleb Jones--is reading at his desk. With the
exception of Frances McDormand (the lead), all the female characters are unbelievably stupid, which
is very much on purpose. It's not clear why. But the script is very strong because new, often
shocking, events keep arising very unexpectedly, something missing from many contemporary scripts
where most of the story unfolds in the first ten minutes and the rest of the movie is different ways
of going over the same ground. In other words it contains this forgotten quantity called plot. Sorry
if I sound pissy on this topic, but I am. Anyhow, see it. It and Lady Bird are the two most recent
films I've seen theatrically, and I'd give a stronger up thumb to Billboards because it's more grown
up in its handling of the story and characters, though I still found Ladybird pretty enjoyable to
watch if only in a Juno Jr. way.