Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri is a comedy-drama which is almost surrealistic, think Fargo the movie. It stars Frances McDormand the star of Fargo, so I wanted to see it. I had to check my mood (did I really want to see this movie now?) after I realized I was already "trapped" by rush hour traffic near the semi-arthouse theater in Charlotte called The Manor, after a dentist appointment on the Tuesday before Thanksgiving. I was going to have to eat an early dinner while waiting for the movie time. But enough about me.
Martin McDonagh is writer-director. He did two films I have seen, In Bruges and Seven Psychopaths, I think both have been on Netflix/Amazon. Seven Psychopaths was more surrealistic than In Bruges. Three Billboards had very realistic cinematography, but some of the characters actions were to me surreal, in that you might say "that would never happen that way" to several events in the movie. Still the movie was believeable as a whole, and had a very powerful effect on me.
The premise of the movie is not for kids: A small town woman's daughter’s body was found raped and burned by the side of the road. We don't know much about it until later, except that it is obviously horrific and soul-torturing for the woman. And get ready for the redneckest small town that is not in a state that borders the Gulf Coast. Only Sam Rockwell could make you believe that a cop that took five years to graduate from the Police Academy could exist and actually be a cop.
There a many other excellent actors in this movie which captivates and does not let go. Excellent direction and cinematography I really like Peter Dinklage and John Hawkes in this movie. There is plenty of comedy and plenty of violence and cursing. There is a hilarious scene at the high school which is worth the price of admission.
This movie has a lot of depressing subject matter, but it is balanced by comedy and hope. The overall message is one of hope. Highly recommended for adults.