Directed by Marielle Heller
A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood may seem like a biopic of the man behind the popular children’s television series Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood, but it is more complex than that. It deals with a jaded magazine journalist Lloyd Vogel, assigned to profile one of America’s most beloved television show hosts, Mr. Rogers. He finds himself developing an unexpected friendship through Rogers’ empathy and kindness, which gives Vogel an entirely different perspective on life and encourages him to resolve his disconsolate dark past.
The story was well executed! I found the constant shift between the old 60s show aesthetic and the modern way of filming to be an interesting way to set the tone as well as establish the time period this movie was set in. The cinematography in this film reminded me of the Taxi Driver or any of the Christopher Nolan films. The casting in any movie is just as important as the story, and the people behind A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood nailed it. Tom Hanks perfectly replicated Ted Rogers’ affectionate and kin
d-hearted aura and Matthew Rhys’ portrayal of Lloyd Vogel really sold the point that this man fell down the rabbit hole that is apathy.
A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood is one of the few movies this year that made me appreciate character-building in the making of the story. Everyone’s acting was top-tier. I felt, as well as understood, the motive behind the characters’ decisions. I’m sure that if you grew up with Mr. Rogers, you are bound to love this movie, but a younger generation can always learn from the values of family, friendship, and community, especially during these pandemic times when human connection is crucial.
Reviewed by Aaron S.