Based on a real life friendship between Fred Rogers and journalist Tom Junod, A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood is a beautiful film. Whimsical, sweet, complicated and full of warmth, just like that polite guy who used to put on his cardigan and sneakers for little children for many years on PBS. Who plays Fred “Mister Rogers” Rogers in this movie? Why, Tom Hanks, of course. You don’t get more perfect casting than the world’s most likeable actor playing one of history’s most likeable guys. The recent revelation that Hanks is an actual sixth cousin of Rogers is no surprise. Hanks plays Rogers in an honorable way. He doesn’t impersonate the man so much as adapt some of his mannerisms, his winning smile and that slow, concerned cadence in his voice. The performance stands as a terrific homage to a wonderful person. But Fred Rogers is a supporting player—albeit an important one—in director Marielle Heller’s (Can You Ever Forgive Me?) heartfelt movie. The main protagonist is Lloyd Vogel (Matthew Rhys of The Americans), a troubled journalist who grumbles upon getting an Esquire Magazine assignment to do a profile on the PBS icon—the guy with a “hokey” TV

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