Author Topic: Three Billboards...  (Read 1268 times)

saltine

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Re: Three Billboards...
« Reply #20 on: January 08, 2018, 04:05:17 PM »
I saw the ending differently. Guess my glass is half-full! Happy New Year!
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Teproc

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Re: Three Billboards...
« Reply #21 on: January 20, 2018, 06:38:27 PM »
Ctrl+F for "catholicism", come up empty, yay I'll have something to add !

Having seen In Bruges turned out to be pretty essential for my enjoyment of this film. McDonagh's starting point is that people are awful, and he works from there. Cynics make for great optimists when you scratch a little, and this is what McDonagh does in his films (well, the two I've seen anyway)... but he does start from a very dark place. The other thing at play here is McDonagh's catholicism*:  ) having grown up Catholic, I always feel at a distance from the way Americans typically depict it, which is to make it mostly about guilt. Not that this is inacurrate necessarily, butif you asked me the one word I associate the most with Catholicism and what I retained of it as a non-believer, it would be forgiveness. Anything can be forgiven to anyone ready to accept forgiveness, That's a powerful idea, and also a disturbing one. Anything, really ? Just like that ? And this is what McDonagh explores here... and I get why some people really, really don't care for what happens with Sam Rockwell's character here.

I think of the best films as being the ones that ask questions, as opposed to the ones that give answers, and I don't think Three Billboards has any answers to give. Not about Rockwell's character, and not about McDormand's character either. They are bad people and they do bad things: are those erased by a potential redemption ? Should they be, and can they be ? Do we even want them to be redeemeded ? Probably we want McDormand, because the root of her actions is one we can sympathize with, but by putting her on a parallel track with Rockwell, McDonagh questions our willingness to forgive one but not the other. It's not about their actions being on a same level (they are not), it's about the idea that forgiveness doesn't look at the gravity of the crime: it's not justice. And that's something that's worth thinking about at any rate.

Given that, I approach this as a fable, and don't worry too much about Lester Freamon not arresting Sam Rockwell on the spot (or McDormand later for that matter): that might be what would happen, but it's not what the film is about so it doesn't happen. It's remarkable how funny the film is too., McDonagh has to walk a very tight rope tonally here, and he mostly succeeds... there's probably something to be said about the way this relates to Fargo, now that I think of it. McDormand is the main link of course, but they're also connected thematically: you put any character from this film in the back of that police car with Marge Gundersen wondering how the hell they got there, but they'd actually have something to answer and that would be an interesting conversation. In Fargo the Coens look at what niceness and politeness can hide (good or bad), here no one is even close to being nice or polite, but there is humanity to be found: those scenes between McDormand and Lucas Hedges are key there, with the language they use and the way they use it.

8/10 (I think, haven't quite settled on a rating yet really)

*well I don't know if he's actually Catholic, but he's part Irish and it's all over this film so I'm assuming he at least grew up Catholic.
« Last Edit: January 20, 2018, 06:40:18 PM by Teproc »

DarkeningHumour

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Re: Three Billboards...
« Reply #22 on: January 22, 2018, 10:03:10 AM »
I thought the proximity of the billboards to Mildred's house was clear from the early scene when Robbie (Lucas Hedges) complains about that on the drive home.

pixote

That and other things made it pretty clear to me from the begging too.
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DarkeningHumour

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Re: Three Billboards...
« Reply #23 on: January 22, 2018, 10:23:35 AM »
Willoughby was pretty nice and polite. You know, when he wasn't overlooking racially motivated police brutality.
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jdc

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Re: Three Billboards...
« Reply #24 on: March 04, 2018, 06:55:04 PM »
Love wins out over hate.

I thought the entire point of the movie was the opposite. Two hateful, vengeful people grasping for any reason to hold onto that rage, partner up on a foolhardy and potentially murderous mission because they steadfastly refuse to let go of the past.

It made me think of Memento. No answers about her daughter's death would stop her from taking her rage out on anyone around her. She will always find a new target. No matter how tenuous.

Memento was the first that that came to my mind when it finished though there is a bit of a difference. Here they do actually decide to go after somebody that looks to be guilty of a similar crime wherein Memento, it ends up being more random and the person just fits what he needs to bring meaning to his life without really knowing if the person is the one he is looking for.

I liked it overall though I think they should have made Nixon a bit less cartoonish. It sort of pulls me out of the film when they are trying to just play him as both a bad cop but also a dimwit. He could have been more competent but just have an evil side to him. But then, it would make it hard to explain how the Molotov Cocktails are being thrown against the building and it is half in flames and he doesn't seem to notice until one actually goes through the window.

but those are the nitpciking things that bothered me at the time but I want to give it a rewatch

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The Deer Hunter

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Re: Three Billboards...
« Reply #25 on: March 08, 2018, 03:58:36 PM »
There was a shot early on from the house to the signs.
I've been making such a mountain of this little point I figured there was a shot I had missed

Just in case you haven't rewatched it yet.



Oh, the John Hawkes parts with his girlfriend are also great in this film.

When they first talked about an ex husband i thought to myself, "John Hawkes would fit right in in a movie like this". 5 minutes later he appears.