By Dave B.
Have you ever heard a story about Bill Murray doing some random thing in some random place and thought that the story couldn’t possibly be true? If so, The Bill Murray Stories (2018, currently on Netflix) is the movie for you. In it, director Tommy Avallone tracks down people who have had unexpected encounters with the enigmatic actor and finds out how those interactions have impacted their lives. Concurrently, Avallone seeks to contact Murray and find out what the actor’s motivations are for his actions.
Bill Murray is one of those iconic people that everyone loves, largely because he doesn’t seem as if he lets his fame go to his head. From reading poetry to construction workers building a coffee shop to washing dishes at a random house party in Scotland, Murray manages to impact people’s lives by being himself and interacting with people in genuine ways. The Bill Murray Stories delves into some of the actor’s most famous sightings. What struck me was that every story anyone told about him always ended with, “…and then he just left”. It’s an eminently fitting way to end a story about someone who randomly shows up and helps everyone have a great time with his unassuming, but down-for-whatever-the-universe-brings manner.
As far as documentaries go, I don’t think the structure of The Bill Murray Stories was anything special, and it doesn’t break any new philosophical ground, but I was smiling throughout nearly its entire 71 minute runtime. There’s just something about Bill Murray that makes people happy and this documentary has the same quality. It’s something to watch when you just want to feel good and for that reason, I definitely recommend it. Viewers are unlikely to come away with any epiphany’s or new insights, but they’ll appreciate every moment of their lives just a bit more, which is pretty damn fine, if you ask me.
I have no clue what I'm doing, but I'll keep doing whatever it is to the best of my ability.