The story follows three generations of a family grappling with a life-changing experience during one day of a vacation in Sintra, Portugal, a historic town known for its dense gardens and fairy-tale villas and palaces.
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Despite the cliche in the setup the scripting by the director and Mauricio Zacharias is quite sublime as is the exceptional casting of the picture. Huppert anchors the film with another fine performance but is so well supported by all players here who are given finely written characters to bring to life. The film is slow to reveal its secrets and is often as languid as its beautiful setting which casts a fine spell.
White people's problems in Sintra. Huppert is a brilliant actress, but I don't think every role is for her. In this case I felt a complete lack of chemistry between the characters/actors, giving me not a dysfunctional family but a non-family. The two last shots were mesmerising, but I just wished that everyone had met earlier for some sort of scene where we could get a complete puzzle and not just scattered pieces.
Cannes done Ira dirty. Yeah, well, whatever. Not since 40 SHADES have I loved one of the man's films as much as I love FRANKIE. It's literally an experimental film in the sense that the director and his collaborators have taken a risk in road-testing a new anti-naturalism, closer to Straub-Huillet or VANYA ON 42ND STREET than Rohmer. Maybe brush up on Deleuze's concept of the affection-image before scoping this gem.
A walk with love and death: uneven, cluttered, but breathtakingly moving story of people coming to grips with themselves as mortality raises its ugly head. Huppert glues it all together impressively, but it's the little moments that stay with you.
As melancholic as Sintra can be. Isabelle is, again, the star of the film, stealing all the attention in terms of her pairs performances but definitely not near to her best works. The film itself doesn't go that far in perspective, unfortunately. Just middle-upper-class people with their 'little' problems, tired, unwanted and sad.