But is it good or bad? Vanessa andLiam battle it out!
For by Vanessa Hague
I didn't know what to expect when I started watching Frank. I read other various reviews and they all said good things - a different "offbeat" comedy, directed by Lenny Abrahamson, partly written by Jon Ronson (who wrote The Men Who Stare at Goats) and starring Domhnall Gleeson, Maggie Gyllenhaal and Michael Fassbender. On paper it sounded like my kind of film and thankly, it was.
It does get quite bizarre at times and the comedy in Frank reflects this, the "chinchilla scene" being a prime example. It is saved from going too overboard because we enter this world together with Jon, he is the only character where it is clear that he is mentally sound and as such he acts as an anchor. I personally liked the comedy, the film knows it running with some odd subject matter and goes with it to the fullest extent. If it decided to do anything less, the film would have fallen flat.
Whilst it's primarily a comedy, it does explore some interesting territory relating to the fine line between madness and talent. Frank's alternative music talent stems from his mental illness and at several points throughout the film, Jon often remarks how much easier song writing would be if he had a difficult childhood to inspire him or a mental illness of his own. If anything, the film could have perhaps explored this theme slightly more because it did provide needed gravitas in a film that basically explores a sensitive subject matter.
Frank won't be for everyone, it might be a little too out there for some and I understand that, but to quote Michael Fassbender, if "you just sort of give yourself over to head", you'll have a quite an enjoyable ride. Bizarre (I'm still trying to make sense of some it), but enjoyable.
Against by Liam McMillen
Frank is confused about what it wants to be. Does it want to be a comedy? Or does it want to be a quirky, but drama that explores dark themes? It tries to do both, and both of them are watered down. Honestly, it's not as funny as it could be, which is baffling because it has Michael Fassbender with a Frank Sidebottom head on for the entire film. I'd say that 66% of the movie it wants to be a comedy and sometimes it hits comedy gold, but the other 33% of the time it wants to be a drama about mental illness. There's massive tonal problems. The final act feels like it doesn't belong to the same film as the first two acts. It's like eating a ham and jam sandwich, they work on their own but together the taste is less than satisfactory – and this is the majority of Frank. Also, for a film about music, the music isn't great. There's one song that hits you, but apart from that the rest are massively forgettable.
Ultimately, there's too many tonal and rhythmic issues to make this compulsory viewing. It could definitely grow on multiple viewings but first impressions fail to meet such high expectations. It's certainly going to be a Marmite film, but I think it's a film you should see. Don't let me put you off
What Do You Think?
Did you enjoy Frank?
Or was it a waste of time?
Let us know in the comments!