Frances Ha: A Hard Time Leaving

by Greta Gerwig, Noah Baumbach
Genres: Cinema
Source: Amazon Prime Rental



Movie Poster for Frances Ha


Frances Ha is a 2012 American comedy-drama film directed by Noah Baumbach and written by Baumbach and Greta Gerwig. Gerwig also plays the title role. The film premiered at the Telluride Film Festival on September 1, 2012. (Wikipedia)
Release date: May 17, 2013 (USA)
Director: Noah Baumbach
Initial DVD release: November 12, 2013
Cinematography: Sam Levy
Screenplay: Noah Baumbach, Greta Gerwig

Frances (Greta Gerwig) lives in New York, but she doesn’t really have an apartment. Frances is an apprentice for a dance company, but she¹s not really a dancer. Frances has a best friend named Sophie, but they aren’t really speaking anymore. Frances throws herself headlong into her dreams, even as their possible reality dwindles. Frances wants so much more than she has but lives her life with unaccountable joy and lightness. FRANCES HA is a modern comic fable that explores New York, friendship, class, ambition, failure, and redemption.


As I sit watching this artsy film, I realize there is a new way of making movies, a new way of acting, probably a new way of writing, or not writing scripts.   It feels strongly influenced by Woody Allen.
It’s incredibly well acted, for the most part; I ‘m not sure if the actors are actually playing characters or if they’re just relaying a story through dialogue.

It’s also  weirdly funny and depressing as it relates the hopelessness of today’s well-educated artist hoping for a break and failing to move forward in her life while she waits for it.  Frances, played by Greta Gerwig, longs for her own place in NYC but without a successful position she ends up crashing on her friends’ sofas.  Gerwig is an engaging performer: awkward and natural. It’s often painful to watch the character act quirky, make bad life decisions, and seems not to learn from them until she has a despairing summer.

She is dragged into maturity as she witnesses her  friends growing up and making compromises as they pair off.  She’s respected as a nascent choreographer but unable to get a job doing strictly that she has to decide whether she’ll make a compromise herself to get her own place and finally grow up.  The pace is good, with some lag in the immature phase of Frances’ life.

Frances often mentions she has a hard time leaving places, and that is certainly true of her college days and the best friendship commitment she felt she had with her friend Sophie who has a real job, and whose commi

Greta Gerwig
Greta Gerwig (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

tment to Frances is not as strong as Frances thought. That reliance on the best friend relationship over the romantic relationship is one of the lifestyles holding Frances back.

There’s swearing, but no sex. There is some drinking, but I don’t think it is excessive or glorified.  Probably okay for teens although in the world of genre fiction it would be the so called “new adult” genre. It’s a quiet film

I watched the film via Amazon Instant video, HD and thought it was certainly worth the $4.99 we spent on it.

Did you have a hard time leaving your college days behind?  I got married right after grad school and moved away so I think I didn’t, but I’m not sure I grew up fast either.

At Amazon