Is this a movie review? Or more of a rant? You decide…
The only reason I was able to get through this movie was the fact that I was watching it while simultaneously playing Halo 5 Arena trying to rank up from Silver to Gold. Even then, after halfway through I was just not digging the movie. In between matches I skipped the Netflix scroll bar in 5 or 10 minute increments until I was near the end just so I could finally be done with it. Normally I try and writer spoiler free reviews, but this movie was so bad for me, I just don’t care. So… *Spoiler Alerts ahead here and there*. What I DID like about this movie: Domhnall Gleeson. (most people will recognize him as one of the main imperial bad guys in Star Wars Episode VII with red hair, but he’s also in The Revenant, Ex Machina, and Bill Weasely from Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows). Well, at least part way through this movie I liked him. He was the only real, grounded character there. Until he decided to just “give” himself in to the weird hippie/modern art/musician crap that the band subjects him to.
What I DIDNT like about this movie: What bothered me most was the fact that people think they can live like this band does. Anyone in charge of a real band who is really trying to take off should just buckle down and record some music over the weekend. They go off into the woods, renting a cabin, for months on end to record their next album. News Flash, this kind of living isn’t real. This fact is proven when SURPRISE their rent money runs out several weeks in. Then, deus ex machina shows up through Domhall Gleeson’s character with a “nest” egg of money. It made no sense for his character to give away his small fortune just so the band could continue on with their silly business. (Seriously half the movie is the band “experimenting with sound”) Frank, the band leader, is weird, as in VERY weird. Besides the fact that he wears a paper mache head that he NEVER takes off for any reason, the way he acts and talks lends itself to either madman or genius, but of course everyone in this movie is so wrapped up into their own version of reality that they follow Frank’s instruction blindly, as if Frank is some sort of musical prodigy. Frank has them do everything from scratch, entirely new musical theories, instruments made from hollowed out wooden logs, cheese graters, and toothbrushes. It’s not music, it’s bull$#!%. But, like I said, they think it’s pure genius. Needless to say Domhall Gleeson’s character is pretty pissed when the band ends up recording the album without using any of his compositions. Then one of the band member commits suicide, and the band just takes it in stride, simply giving the man a viking’s funeral, and continuing on. In the end, what happens? Gleeson gets fed up and tries to take Frank’s stupid paper mache head off, which ends up with Gleeson and Frank getting into two car accidents, destroying Frank’s paper mache head. Guess what, turns out FRANK IS MENTALLY HANDICAPPED. His idiosyncrasies aren’t genius or special, he’s simply mentally handicapped, It was seriously a cop-out ending and I was none to pleased to have waste my time. Gleeson should have immediately sensed that something was wrong all along and either ditched the band to return to his regular life, or, even better, GET FRANK HELP! DUH! You don’t pander to someone’s mental illness, which the band did for years, and Gleeson did for 11 months. So frustrating. Frank needed help, not people who ignored his mental illness, worse yet, people who encouraged his mental illness.
Also I hate Maggie Gyllenhaal. She was apparently “not insane” in this movie as Clara, and yet clearly she was. Take a valium and chill babe, you’re a straight up wacko. On the other end of things, Jake Gyllenhaal played a psycho in Nightcrawler, but played him so well I was interested in learning more about his character, not like Maggie’s character in Frank.
Even Michael Fassbender‘s performance didn’t save the movie for me, he was amazing in the Steve Jobs movie he did though. (And he’s in the new Assassins Creed movie).
Better than: Prince Avalanche
Instead, Watch: The End of the Tour