Frances McDormand and I went to the same college, Bethany College, Bethany, WV. I was a year ahead of her, and though we did not travel in the same circles (we may have had a few classes together, it was a small school), I knew who she was. Smart, creative, funny, friendly, I think everyone knew who she was. She was in most theater productions, and by my memory (of 30 years ago), was a good actress well before her training at Yale drama. It's been fun to follow her career. I cheer from afar, and count myself as a big fan.
Her latest film, Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day, has drama, comedy and romance. The performances are top notch. Taking place in pre-WW II London, McDormand plays a desperate woman, just trying to work so she can eat. For a day, she fakes her way, as a social secretary, into the life of a young actress (played by an effervescent Amy Adams), who is working 3 men to her advantage. Love, integrity and morals tug the characters all over the place. This film comes to a neat conclusion that worked for me!