Dallas Movie Screening

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Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Manchester By The Sea

Ben Affleck is Cool and All but Casey is Finally Getting his Due

Years ago when Ben Affleck was big in Hollywood no one paid attention to his brother Casey even though he was in some good films. Now, Ben is an established director/filmmaker and Casey is starting to nab these roles that make him shine. This one might launch him as the new Affleck in the public’s eyes. Let’s get reel and break this down.

An uncle is forced to take care of his teenage nephew after the boy's father dies.


Director Kenneth Lonergan brings us an authentic, genuine, and heartbreaking tale about loss and the process of how some people are different when coping with a tragedy. The characters seem realistic and as if you are following real people you would see every day around your community. The communal aspect and intimacy of the town really shines through adding the grounded realism of the story. The characters themselves are always consistent of how they are written and are never melodramatic and over acting. This film prompts me urgently to watch Lonergan’s previous works. I hear Margaret is amazing. The way it also ends really doesn’t sit well with people and just cuts off abruptly. I myself found it to be like real life and how things just happen and we have to deal with them and kind of move on.



Casey Affleck is definitely the star and really breaks through to an inevitable Oscar nomination. The raw nature of his performance and hardened character provides thunderous quiet moments and saddening loud moments. He bounces off of Michelle Williams fantastically. Her character is the only one who can break him and that provides us with some heartbreaking scenes. She is only in a few scenes but she makes an imprint on the film. Lucas Hedges, who plays Casey’s nephew, is also a standout providing the angst and frustration of losing a parental figure as a tennager.

This isn’t really a con but more an observation. I love Kyle Chandler a lot and he is very good in this film but his performance is slightly under everyone else. I am probably just nitpicking and you can light up your torches now.


I am a bit of sucker when it comes to films set on the east coast. This film is no different. The beautiful, blue ocean and the gorgeous fall colors of the landscapes made me want to move there immediately. All the ocean scenes add a layer of calming beauty to the characters and the dialogue.


Editing/Special Effects

The two hour run-time is non-existent and you are swept up into the tragedies that this family processes and really caring for each individual person. On the surface it might look like a typical family drama, but the performances will transport you into this environment and make you forget you are watching a movie.

Despite my love for the film, I am contemplating the re-watch ability of the film. It is heavy and not something I would want to watch all the time. My friend George McCann on Facebook said it best, “This would make a great stage play.” If it was a play, I wouldn’t mind seeing it again.

Definitely in my top ten of the year, this is simply one of the best of the year. Step aside Ben, Casey is about to burst through the mainstream with a nomination and I hope Michelle Williams gets one for Supporting Actress as well.

(Review by Chase Lee)

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