Frantz

I got caught in the early morning rain and saw that a bit of hail came down.  I went out to do five hours of work, and then I returned home and had fish sandwiches before I went out to catch “Frantz” at the theatre.  I fell asleep during the trailers but awoke for the start of the movie, although I was drowsy.  The movie was in black and white with some color, although it wasn’t quite like “The Wizard of Oz.”  There was some mystery to it, and the characters lied and have to live with it.  A visitor from France visits a grave in Germany after World War I, and he gets to know the family of the deceased, meaning the parents and the young woman he was going to marry.  This man named Adrien ultimately seemed like one of the dumbest characters on the movie screen in recent years.  He’s going around weeping over this person named Frantz, and his tale suggests a homosexual attraction.  The thing that is interesting is the hostile atmosphere he encounters from the German locals, especially the man who wants to marry Anna.  It felt like the movie went on forever.  Part of the point was to show Anna in the contrasting environment.  She gets to experience the discomfort of going to France.  Maybe this movie was supposed to show what a different world it was a century ago, but I couldn’t understand why the Hoffmeister couple didn’t show more skepticism over who this Adrien really was.  What was his charm supposed to be, his ability to play a violin?  The writing of letters back and forth reminded me a little of “Jules and Jim.”  I thought that Paula Beer, who played Anna, was the most interesting person in the movie.  The director, Francois Ozon, is known for “Swimming Pool,” which I don’t remember too well at all.  I wouldn’t put Ozon in the category of a great director based on these two movies. I thought that “Frantz” was very flawed.  I wished the story had ended before Anna made the trip to France.  Ozon really needed to wrap up this film in good time instead to let it drag on until we got tired.  He is 49 years old, so apparently this is his mature statement.  Some people seemed to be impressed with “Frantz,” but it didn’t excite me.  As I walked through the lobby of the theatre, one woman said that she liked “Going In Style.”  I wasn’t too eager to see it, though.  Back at home, I watched television.  There was a Kung Fu marathon, and one episode had Diana Muldaur in it.  I wondered who lit the candles in the temple.  I wanted to see the person who composed the famous theme music.    It’s too bad that they could maintain the quality of the show for a couple of more seasons.  Some of the people who died on April 9 include Frank Lloyd Wright (1959), Willie Stargell (2001), and Sidney Lumet (2011).  Today is a birthday for Elle Fanning (19), Dennis Quaid (63), Michael Learned (78), Jean-Paul Belmondo (84), and Hugh Hefner (91).

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