A Beautiful Day in the Neighbourhood
Tom Hanks portrays Mister Rogers in A Beautiful Day in the Neighbourhood, a timely story of kindness triumphing over cynicism, based on the true story of a real-life friendship between Fred Rogers and journalist Tom Junod. After a jaded magazine writer (EmmyÂ® winner Matthew Rhys, 2018 Best Actor in a Drama Series, The Americans) is assigned a profile of Fred Rogers, he overcomes his skepticism, learning about kindness, love and forgiveness from Americaâ€™s most beloved neighbour.
The real Fred Rogers was an ordained Presbyterian minister who believed that his childrenâ€™s show was a pulpit of sorts, from which he preached Jesusâ€™ message of unconditional love and boundless mercy (albeit without mentioning Jesusâ€™ name). This movie retains not just that message, but hints at the quiet faith that lay beneath it.
We see Fred pray, sometimes to Lloydâ€™s discomfort. His Bible makes an appearance or two. And when he talks to a dying man, he asks for the man to pray for him. When Lloyd says that was a kind thing for Fred to do - knowing that this little act of faith would make the dying man feel a sense of purpose - Fred looks at him aghast: Anyone whoâ€™s going through what that dying fellow is going through must be especially close to God, Fred says.