This Week in Soundtrack: Frank (2014)

WARNING! Spoilers to follow so if you want to see this film, watch it, then come back to read.

Before Lenny Abrahamson became a big name in Hollywood with 2015’s Room, he was just another independent, Irish filmmaker. He had some films under his belt that were critically acclaimed but not many outside of his country noticed. Until 2014 rolled around and all of that changed with the film Frank. The film follows an up and coming musician, played by the now Prince of Movies Domnhall Gleeson, who is recruited to join The Soronprfbs. That band, with a pain in the butt spelling, is experimental to the extreme and they are leaded by a man name Frank (Michael Fassbender) who just happens to wear a huge, papier-mache head 24/7.

So the film, at first, plays all of this for laughs. Frank and his band are a bunch of misfits and the gag is that their “music” is anything but. As it goes on though you realize it becomes the dangers of fame and also of mental illness. Does it all succeed in the end? It’s a bit all too clean at the end for me but the performances overall really do a good job selling this weird, slice of life story. Also, a story involving writer Jon Ronson in any capacity is worth your time (get ANY of his books cause you’ll have fun). It all leads up to why this is an article and what ultimately won this film:

I originally watched this film on a plane which is not ideal but I gotta tell you it was hard to hold back the tears. The film ends on a ridiculous song but Michael Fassbender sells it so damn well and it ends with a culmination of a great message: I Love You All.  Again, I’m no expert on singing talent so to say Fassbender is doing a great job vocally would be misleading. But his mannerisms and overall performance makes it hard to deny he is doing a great job rooting for this mentally ill singer. In fact I love this performance so much I wound up purchasing the song which is available online. It’s a cleaner copy and it wouldn’t surprise me if some trickery to make Fassbender sound professional. But hell, it’s a wonderful song either way so why not cut the man some slack?

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