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Frances Ha (2012)
Charming but perhaps, a little too much
Having watched the film, I was immediately impressed by how "cozy" it felt with its indie home movie style and feel-good, albeit slightly generic soundtrack. All in all, it's solid and feels genuine, which is entirely commendable.
However, I can agree that the film really doesn't expand upon the Coming of Age formula and gets a little caught up in being as charming and demographic baiting as possible. Nothing in the film really feels particularly relevant, and the plot chugs along at a comfortable pace towards an ending where little has changed in terms of plot. This, it seems, is the main criticism of the film.And yet, this immaturity and juvenile optimism, to me, is the heart and soul of the film. The two lead actresses Greta Gerwig and Mickey Sumner present an entirely believable and authentic insight into the struggle of two naïve yet incredibly vibrant 27 year old protagonists reaching the most crucial and daunting point in their so-far lives. They struggle with in many of our opinions, small issues, and yet, they are very real and imminent hurdles to overcome for the protagonists. The film simply documents their small personal victories and mistakes as they learn, grow, and mature. And that's it. It doesn't pretend to offer a profound insight into the grand nature of humanity's struggle to survive, nor does it need to. What baffles me is why so many critics attempt to treat it as such.
I thoroughly enjoyed the movie despite its apparent "immaturity", and it's definitely a heartfelt film by Noah Baumbach that feels almost slightly autobiographical. All in all, it's a film that achieves what it sets out to do incredibly well, no more and no less. It's not perfect but I left the theater satisfied and overall, impressed.