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Jonathan Rhys Meyers,
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This is a story of a man (Walker), suffering from dwarfism, who writes an autobiographical account of his life. In flashbacks, we see how he was conceived to a woman (Parillaud) at the end of WWII as she attempts to smuggle herself to America on a troop ship. Caught, she is put ashore back in her homeland of Ireland where she struggles to bring up her dwarfed child. Then comes an ongoing affair with a man (Byrne) who becomes a surrogate father to the boy, teaching him about the stars and planets... and calling him "Frankie Starlight." After that affair she meets with a man (Dillon) who takes her and the boy to America, but they are misfits in the prairie lands of the West and soon return home to Ireland where the boy grows to manhood as a writer.Written by
BOB STEBBINS <firstname.lastname@example.org>
A visionary film, rare indeed, and most aptly titled.
Byrne's work, usually excellent, blends in subtly here, works its power through understatement, underplaying. His character's kindness lights and lifts Frankie to the stars, literally and figuratively, but Frankie's star shines brightest. "Frankie Starlight" begs description; the type of beautiful, warm story that just isn't made anymore, that isn't believable, even when it's a true story, as this one is. These movies just don't exist, we're told. I liked "My Left Foot" which received more critical attention and did better at the box office than "Frankie." But "Frankie" -- for no good reason, none I can state --left a warmer, happier impression; maybe because its heroics were less dramatic; it's a simpler story. A "Little, Big Man" without cowboys and Indians, and in this case a really little "little, big man" -- how do you sell such a film? What's that? He's not an American, either? Too bad. Got art-film house written all over it. Yada yada yada. Yet I want to see "Frankie" again -- and then read him, too. Learn a lot more. A fine film, generally low-key, sotto voce -- and so much more powerful because it is.
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