Frances McDormand is coming off of a career-best performance in the HBO miniseries Olive Kitteridge, and the Oscar winner is showing no signs of slowing down now. Her next lead role is in Martin McDonagh’s Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri, which is slated for release later this year and appears to be another perfect showcase for the actress’ strengths. Here, in the same breath, you can watch McDormand tenderly grieve the loss of a child and kick a row of teenagers in the crotch, with no apparent remorse. And you thought movies were dying?
The film centers on Mildred Hayes (McDormand), a woman who takes matters into her own hands after her daughter’s murder is left unsolved and mostly forgotten by the police. She puts up billboards in her small town calling out the cops, who she says are “too busy torturing black folks to solve actual crimes” and provides a catalyst for a bloody all-out brawl between town residents and those employed to protect them. McDormand leads a cast made up, primarily, of McDonagh mainstays, including Woody Harrelson, Sam Rockwell, and character actor Zeljko Ivanek.
This first red-band trailer unveils an unsurprisingly perfect pairing. McDonagh, a playwright who broke out into movies with In Bruges, brings a brand of foul-mouthed profundity that lands right in McDormand’s sweet spot. Early indications are Ebbing, Missouri will launch at a major festival and generate some awards chatter for McDormand, but for now, let’s just get excited at the prospect of the actress spewing some of that wonderfully profane McDonagh dialogue.