Film Review – Frances Ha (2012)

Frances Ha - post

Title – Frances Ha (2012)

Director – Noah Baumbach (The Squid and the Whale)

Cast – Greta Gerwig, Mickey Sumner, Adam Driver, Michael Esper

Plot – New York girl and 27 year old hipster Frances (Gerwig) lives a life where the main priority is hanging out with best friend and flat mate Sophie (Sumner). Life changes for Frances however when Sophie meets a man and a realisation within herself that she isn’t getting any younger.

“Sometimes it’s good to do what you’re supposed to do when you’re supposed to do it”

Review by Eddie on 6/03/2014

Crafting his most Woody Allen lite film yet, Allen’s seemingly heir apparent Noah Baumbach’s black and white New York set tale of modern day women and questionable life choices was a critical darling upon release and a film many would rank as one of their personal favourites of last year. Now for this to occur for yourself you will need to fall in love with Baumbach’s and Gerwig’s creation of Frances for if you don’t (like I did) the films impact will be nothing more than slight enjoyment.

Nothing is wrong with a character that makes bad choice after bad choice or who seems more concerned with going to a party than getting a decent job but in the case of our carefree Frances it just seems a little much. It could be the case that Baumbach’s film is more accurate than we would care to admit when concerning oneself with the youth of today but it doesn’t make the film anymore impactful. Gerwig is without doubt a fantastic Frances and it would be fair to say that this is her star making vehicle. It is due to her performance that Frances Ha succeeded in the way it did on release and was made tolerable despite our better judgements.

As I am readily admitting that I did not find the character of Frances or any others in the film that wholly likeable I am in agreeance with the critical and general public that Baumbach’s film is filled with charm and acts as a love letter to the Big Apple that few films can capture. The black and white style fits in perfectly with the easy on the eye cinematography and the upbeat musical score and the film has a charm within that makes it truly hard to despise.

For those that connect with Frances and her merry band of hipster friends Frances Ha will be a true joy and perhaps a new favourite to add to other New York set classics, for those like me who found the characters a little to slap worthy there is much still to enjoy in this tale of modern day love, friendship and life.

On a side note to the film lets hope that Frances Ha star and Girls regular Adam Driver can pull off being a Star Wars villain if rumours of his casting are to be believed.

3 spare of the moment Paris trips out of 5

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21 responses to “Film Review – Frances Ha (2012)

  1. Good review Eddie. Sometimes the hipster-y stuff got on my nerves, but overall, I was able to let it all slide-by and just focus on somebody’s life that isn’t too eventful or anything, but exactly like anybody else’s life out there. Except for the fact that she’s a whole lot more charming with Gerwig around.

  2. Haven’t watched but was very interested to see what you would make of something that seems to be outside your genre (if “hipster can be described as a genre). I still can’t make up my mind whether I would find this fun or whether it would be like “Friends” – I never got what was funny about Friends.

    • This is like Friends on steroids, I just am not too sure it’s wholly funny or charming, people wasting there lives and money on alcohol and bad life choices ha.
      Eddie

  3. Never got around to watching this because it just looked too indie for my tastes.

    But then you mentioned “hipster”. Eff that! Definitely not watching this for the rest of my life. Maybe in another lifetime.

    Nah, screw that. I’ll contact a psychic and get ’em to contact my “soul” to let it know to not watch Frances Ha in my next reincarnation. That’ll do it. 🙂

  4. Fair review Eddie, I may have at the time liked the overall experience a shade more than you but I will also readily admit that the more I think about Frances the more awkward and irksome her behavior is/was. I really loved the black-and-white, but the more I think back on the film the more it fades in my mind. Though I still never thought it one of the best I had seen in 2013. Was still a good intro to Baumbach for me, though. 🙂

    • Very intriguing thoughts Clown and I am glad that you related so much to the film I can appreciate it when someone fines such an affinity with a movie, it’s what the medium is all about!
      Eddie

  5. I’ve never liked the look of this film, nothing about it particularly appeals to me! But everyone I know kept saying how great it was so it’s so good to finally find a review that seems as unkeen on it as me! Ha!

  6. Frances Ha is the kind of film you like a lot an hour after you see it then feel a little embarrassed about praising so much a month later.

    But it’s still an enjoyable film with great black and white photography, and I still have a crush on Greta Gerwig.

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