frankly, i like ‘frank’

Hello, person of the planet Earth.

I’ve been trying to watch more films recently and to read more about Film. I now can’t watch a film without analysing it’s every aspect and always asking the question “why”. It got to the point where we watched “The Fly” at university and I asked the lecturer what was the purpose of all the media and journalism included in the film. He told me it was something traditional for the 80s – it didn’t have any hidden subtext, it was just helping the story.

Nevertheless, I’ve definitely grown as a filmmakers these past few weeks. The first thing I realised was that filmmaking was much, much, much more harder than I thought it was. And talent and vision are not always the only thing it takes to create a beautiful film. It takes hard work, endless work and inspiration. I’ve made a goal for myself: watch a minimum of 20 films a month and read a book every month. The numbers I’ve chosen are small, but I plan on making them bigger as time passes. Thanks to letterboxd.com, I can keep track of the films I watch and pick new ones easily. So far I’ve been doing good with my goals.

One of the films I watched these past few days was Frank (2014) by Lenny AbrahamsonThe film is classified as a comedy, and while it does have it’s funny moments, I think it was made mostly to make you feel something. Now this is among my favourite films.

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One of my favourite deaths on-screen.

Here are some of the themes Frank has touched on:

  • Talent – this is a very obvious one, since the characters are all musicians, trying to get their music out there. The main protagonist, played by Domnhall Gleeson, is a musician struggling to find his voice and to create songs. Then he meets a band called Soronprfbs – a group of people with a very eccentric sound, led by a guy with a mask, called Frank (Michael Fassbender). They join forces in hopes of finishing their album and presenting it to the world.
  • Identity – because Frank’s face is mostly hidden throughout the film, the audience can’t help but think what is underneath the mask. Why is he wearing it? Is he that shy? What is he really planning to do? I personally connected this with the struggle to be yourself – something Frank is perhaps struggling with. In his mask, Frank behaves in such a normal and extroverted way – he is friendly, goofy, jokes around… And then we uncover what he really is like without the mask – he barely looks people in the eye, he barely speaks and when he does, it’s quiet and unsure.
  • Friendship – what is friendship? Is it helping someone be happy? What if what makes them happy is different from what you think is happiness? Is it taking care of them? What if they don’t want to?

I think this film will stay in my heart for long, just because I connected with it on such a deep level. I think the cinematography was good and easy for the eye to observe and there are some shots that I will remember forever. I like the consistency of it and how the colour scheme changes throughout the film in order to convey meaning. It still has the frame by two similar shots, which creates the feeling of completeness and being finished.

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The film’s opening shots, which matches to its…..
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….final one.

 


I love how films make you feel. From giggling to the silliness of the film in one minute, to wondering at Frank the next one, all the way to trying to hold back tears as the film ends. It is one of those films that you wish would be longer just so you could be with the characters a little bit more, just to feel them a little longer.

I should watch more films.

Until next time,
Gabriella

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