Frances Ha Review

Posted 9 years ago by myetvmedia

Francis Ha is a delightful, coming of age comedy that will strike a universal chord with today’s post-adolescent Generation Y (the “Millennials”). This movie may very possibly become a cult classic in the vein of Woody Allen’s  ”Annie Hall”.

Noah Baumbach and Greta Gerwig capture with hilarity and sensitivity the joys and heartaches that the lead character, Francis Ha, encounters as she desperately tries to flourish in a city she doesn’t really understand. This is a gem of a movie, reminiscent of HBO’s “Girls” in its raw authenticity and female-centric relationships. The cast includes Grace Gummer, Meryl Streep’s daughter and Mickey Sumner, daughter of Sting. Set in NYC and shot in B & W, it is very much about extended adolescence, and growing pains of trying to make it:  the reality of many twenty-somethings living in a city like Manhattan today.

Francis is a lovely but awkward, slightly eccentric and charmingly optimistic, aspiring dancer. Fumbling, misguided and idealistic at 27 she “looks older, but acts younger” than she is. Her best friend/partner in crime is Sophie (Mickey Sumner). Totally inseparable and true BFFs, the pair can find fun in even the dullest, most mundane circumstances. Francis is not on a quest to complete her life by finding romantic love. Her dream for the future revolves around camaraderie with Sophie. Suddenly the bubble bursts and her life is thrown into turmoil when reality intervenes. This is a best friends love story set to a soundtrack of French New Wave music sprinkled with some David Bowie.

One of the highlights of the film is when Francis plans an excursion to Paris for the weekend. Financed by a new credit card, the trip includes none of the expected Parisian experiences, rather, it is closer to a comedy of errors: jet-lag, missed connections, and a quick turnaround result in the trip being more of a character building experience than a cultural getaway.

Francis Ha screened at the Telluride Film Festival, Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), the New York Film Festival (NYFF), and Edinburgh International Film Festival. This movie comes highly recommended.

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