Watching it is akin to be being waylaid by an expert raconteur. There is the curious sense that it has told this tale before; that every joke has been honed and rehearsed; every anecdote lovingly polished in advance.
Those familiar with McDonagh’s work will be unsurprised to learn that Three Billboards is a bold and showboating affair, robustly drawn and richly written; a violent carnival of small-town American life. Yet it has a big, beating heart, even a rough-edged compassion for its brawling inhabitants.
Yes, Del Toro’s latest flight of fancy sets out to liberally pastiche the postwar monster movie, doffing its cap to the incident at Roswell and all manner of related cold war paranoia. But it’s warmer and richer than the films that came before. Beneath that glossy, scaly surface is a beating heart.
A less polished director might have become lost and confused along the film’s lengthy running-time. But Payne’s handling is perfect. He never puts a foot wrong, rustling up a picture that is as bright as a button and as sharp as a tack.
Satrapi's disreputable little creepshow finally doesn't amount to a hill of beans. Maybe that's fine. The Voices provides an enjoyably trashy antidote to the traditional Sundance fare of soulful drama and crusading documentary.