Manchester by the Sea

Not this Manchester, it’s a small town in Massachusetts with scenic beaches.

At its premiere at the 2016 Sundance Festival, it immediately created buzz, with Rolling Stone calling it “the must-see film at this year’s festival”. It then picked up Best Original Screenplay and Best Actor for Casey Affleck at the Academy Awards.

“Manchester by the Sea” is a finely shaded portrait, a study in individual misery set in a place that is observed with care and affection. Mr. Affleck and Mr. Hedges are exceptional, but the rest of the large cast is nearly as fine.

A film that can provoke the greatest laughter and then strike with an overwhelming dramatic force.

There are no contrivances, no manipulations, no false notes. Lonergan’s film rings true as the complex relationships and multi-layered intricacies of grief find a compass that points to calmer waters. Prepare to be moved. This is one of the year’s best.