Movie Review: ‘Frank’ Starring Michael Fassbender, Maggie Gyllenhaal and Domnhall Gleeson

frank-fassbender-gyllenhaal-gleeson

Frank, the new film starring Michael Fassbender, Maggie Gyllenhaal and Domnhall Gleeson, screened at this year’s SXSW Film Festival. It was high on my list of films I wanted to see and I tried everything I could to squeeze it into my schedule. But, I just couldn’t make it happen.

Now that I’ve finally seen it, I’m thankful to the movie Gods that it didn’t work out because Frank stank.

Directed by Lenny Abrahamson, Frank is about a wannabe musician named Jon (Gleeson) who, out of a twist of fate, joins a fringe pop band fronted by Frank (Fassbender). Frank is an apparent musical genius who hides his head inside a giant fake head. Yeah, he’s got issues.

Also in the mix is bandmate, Clara (Gyllenhaal). She’s cold, scary and getting on her bad side isn’t the smartest thing to do. Guess what side Jon quickly ends up?

When Jon is invited to join the band in a remote house in Ireland to record their latest album, he can’t resist the offer. But, as he tries to insert himself into the fabric of the band, he throws off the balance of the group, becoming even more of an outcast. Except to Frank.

Gleeson holds the film together. He’s our window into this whole crazy world, even though he’s a bit delusional himself at times. The more time Jon spend with Frank and company, it’s apparent that he doesn’t belong in this world. And the more time we, the audience, spend with them, we realize that as well.

The main gimmick that Frank hides behind this big, papier-mâché head starts to get tiresome. Fassbender does wonders with it, I’ll admit. He keeps it interesting throughout but the story itself stalls while the band is recording the album. The album has, in the film, taken forever to record (thanks to Frank’s obsessiveness and attention to detail) and it feels like that as you sit and watch it unfold. Slowly unfold.

With Gyllenhaal’s Clara, basically you get what you see. Once you size her up, she is who she is so there is no arc she gets to play.

The film is about mental illness, not just Frank but in every character. Do we succumb to it or get help and carry on?

The ending is rather touching but by the time we get there, enough is enough.

Director: Lenny Abrahamson

Cast: Domhnall Gleeson, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Scoot McNairy, Michael Fassbender

Leave a Reply

http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/watch-keegan-michael-key-explain.jpg
Watch: Keegan-Michael Key Explains Why “Improv actors are at war together”
Check out Key's points on why it's so important for improv actors to have each others' backs in the clip above.
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/norman-reedus-actor.jpg
Norman Reedus on Acting: “If it’s something you really want, you have to roll with the rejection”
Norman Reedus is a fan-favorite star on The Walking Dead and was in the cult favorite film The Boondock Saints. However, in the dozen years between those two gigs Reedus had experienced ups and downs in his career and in many cases he was cast in very small roles in big movies or lead roles […]
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/frank-grillo.jpg
Frank Grillo on Being Typecast: “I welcome it”
"I hear actors pooh-pooh the idea... people might see them as a certain thing. I welcome it" - Frank Grillo on Typecasting
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/Michael-Shannon-Acting-for-free.jpg
Michael Shannon on Actors Working for Free: “I think as a group actors need to stop enabling this behavior”
"If somebody’s got a good script and you want to put good actors in it then everybody should be taken care of." - Michael Shannon
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/Javier-Munoz-Hamilton.jpg
Javier Muñoz on Taking the Lead in ‘Hamilton’: “This is just fun, and glorious”
Muñoz talks about his feelings on playing Alexander Hamilton full-time and his relationship with Lin-Manuel Miranda.