9.18.2014

MUSIC FILMS THAT BANG :: Frank

Frank trailer + review barrel~d3M
Frank

Frank is a movie about music, about popularity and about a young man who was an outsider being recognized for his musical talents and asked to join a band of outsiders. He quickly learns that sometimes - the dysfunction that pushes people apart ... might also be the very thing they have in common.



Frank was written by journalist and filmmaker - Jon Ronson, who based the story in part on his real experience in a band. Jon (Domhnall Gleeson) happens upon members of the band "Soronprfbs" at the point they are losing their keyboard player. He mentions that he plays keyboard and is asked by the manager (Scott McNairy) if he can play certain chords. When the response is yes, he is asked to join them at that night's gig. He shows up to a bizarre scene onstage, as band members Clara (Maggie Gyllenhaal), Nana (Carla Azar), Baraque (François Civil) are playing to a nearly empty room. After a few seconds, the band's frontman Frank (Michael Fassbender) comes on stage wearing an oversized papier-mâché head which remains on indefinitely. The band plays improvisationally, for a few minutes then Clara, who is clearly the Alpha of the group lunges into a tyrade, knocking over her instruments and the show is over.

Jon doesn't hear back from the group for a few weeks before he is invited back by Frank to what he believes is another gig, but actually turns into a few months in a remote part of Ireland to record the band's newest album. During this time, Jon learns more about each member and develops in his own growth as a musician even though he is often denigrated by Clara, Nana and Baraque. Frank says that he sees potential in Jon's song writing. Jon also maintains a social media presence online through Twitter and Youtube of the oddities during the sessions. As they finally come together to record the perfect album - Jon is feeling like he might be an accepted member of the band. I'll leave you at this before the opening of Act 2. What plays out is not exactly what we are hoping for going in but what makes sense in the end.

The actors did an excellent job of portraying such avant-garde musicians and the music is genuinely good - in my opinion ... even if quite left-field. I was reminded of such acts as Daft Punk wearing their helmets and Dan Deacon with his sound and composition.

The film will make you smile and possibly inspire to create music or whatever medium your art form takes.

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