There is nothing outright funny about the subject manner in Oscar hopeful Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri.
In fact, a story about a mother’s fight to have her local police department take more immediate action her murdered daughter’s case could be a damn good drama.
But here, director Martin McDonagh finds comedy in even the most difficult of places. He straddles a delicate line here, and blends genres with an earnest mastery of the craft of filmmaking.
Sam Rockwell sheds his skin and becomes a serpent in this unbelievable supporting role, sure to win him an Oscar.
Grieving mother Frances Mcdormand, embattled police chief Woody Harrelson and toxic estranged father John Hawkes all turn in career-bests.
This is a work that defies you to do any less than become immersed in the large-scale secrets of this small-town setting.
Three Billboards isn’t just great, it may just be the most compelling narrative of the year.