Cinema Review: Frances Ha

Frances-ha

 

DIR: Noah Baumbach • WRI: Noah Baumbach, Greta Gerwig •  PRO: Noah Baumbach, Rodrigo Teixeira, Lila Yacoub • DOP: Sam Levy • ED: Jennifer Lame • DES: Sam Lisenco • Cast: Greta Gerwig, Mickey Sumner, Adam Driver

 

Frances lives for her toe-tapping joviality, play fights and late night pillow chats until her best friend and playmate Sophie moves out to live with her successful boyfriend. What follows is a quaint New York odyssey as Frances attempts to lose herself in any friends and acquaintances that might distract her from the quarter-life crisis descending upon her.

 

Baumbach’s seventh outing as director is a lovingly crafted testament to the young and restless, that endlessly ambitious but aimless period of post college calamity with writing partner and muse Greta Gerwig glittering in black and white glory as the aforementioned heroine seeking direction in all the wrong places.

 

Frances’s dilemma renders her awkwardly self-conscious in social circles, a foil that follows into her modern dance class as she struggles to maintain the grace and poise of her fellow students. An elegance of performance on Gerwig’s part utilises every inflection possible not to draw sympathy for Frances but a sense of endearment towards her exuberant personality and unwavering (sometimes squirm-inducing) honesty.

 

While the freewheeling narrative isn’t for everyone there’s some beautiful throwaway lines of improvised humour confident enough to poke fun at its hipster trappings and the Bowie soundtrack is sure to cause some toe-tapping in the aisles.

Anthony Assad

85 mins
15A (see IFCO website for details)
Frances Ha is released on 25th July 2013

Frances Ha – Official Website

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