Bill Murray encounters

Everyone loves Bill Murray. How can you not? He’s a special kind of celebrity. Everyone loves him in something, whether it’s from his SNL days, or his movie work (CaddyshackGhostsbusters etc.) or even his more serious work like Lost in Translation, it’s almost impossible to not like the guy.  

He even had a special connection with Xavier University, where his son assistant coached for a couple of years. But what is it like to meet him? 

That’s what the documentary “The Bill Murray Stories” looks to answer.  

It starts with a man on a mission: to discover whether or not the hundreds of stories on the internet are true. And it turns out, a good number of them are. The documentary spends most of its time with its directory, Tommy Avallone, talking about his once in a lifetime experience with the super star. One time, he’s bartending at a bar in Austin, Texas. Another, he is singing happy birthday to a 94-year-old woman at a Xavier-Baylor game. Next, he’s in a newlywed couple’s photos. Sometimes it’s him reading poetry to a group of construction workers.  

These stories all seem crazy and impossible to believe. But thanks in large part to handheld technology, they all turn out to be true. Everyone seems to have either pictures or early smartphone footage of it happening, and the documentary shows us all of it.  

But it also delves into the more philosophical meaning to it all. Is he trying to tell us something by the way he lives? Is there something more to him just dropping in, just being an ordinary guy having fun and then just walking off into the night?  

To not spoil anything, I will just say that this documentary answers all this and more. It left me wanting to have my own interaction with him, and I’ve come close. We went to the same grade school in Wilmette, Illinois (St. Joseph, look it up). I was at Game three of the 2016 World Series, where he encouraged everyone in attendance to sing the national anthem “Like our greatest American Hero, Mr. Daffy Duck!” Even just the brief time when his son coached at Xavier, it would have been awesome to have one of these brief moments. But alas, it did not happen.  

But who knows, maybe one day we’ll all be able to have our own Bill Murray encounter.  

5/5 stars, highly recommend.  

By: Jack Dunn | U.S. & World News Editor