Sunday, August 27, 2006

"Dear, Gerard." Er, I mean, "Dear, Frankie."

It's easy for a gal's brain to get a bit scrambled at the mere thought of Scottish heart-throbby actor, Gerard Butler. Mr. B is the sort of man that God puts on the earth to remind us gals that it was a really, really wonderful idea for the Lord to create males.

So, Butler-Babe's in this flick called "Dear, Frankie." Frankie's a deaf 9-year-old who's been writing letters to his seafaring father, only the letters he writes go to his mom's P.O., and the replies from his dad are written by mom. Frankie's dad is a worthless pile of dog doo, and his mom is on the run, constantly, from the Poophead, always trying to protect her son from the harsh realities of the past (and present).

But, ah, the made-up ship upon which daddy-dear has been fictitiously sailing has come to Glasgow, unbeknownst to the mom, but known to Frankie. He now expects to see pop, so now she must scramble to provide a father for a day.

Enter swoon-boy Butler, all leather-clad and sober-faced and more than a tad mysterious as "the stranger." No name. No past, future, present. Just a guy provided by the nice friend/boss-lady of the mom's, Marie.

The charade is on. It's only supposed to be for one day, but hunka-hunka fake father takes a shine to Frankie and insists on another day with the boy...and with the mom.

But the real father re-enters the picture, and things get emotionally complicated--like, yeah, Gerard Butler, duh--and the truth may have to out.

My only quibbles are that 1. the movie needed a lot more Butler. No, really, it did. 2. the kiss needed to be longer. No, honest.

Oh, okay. Scottish accents on gorgeous men oozing alpha-testosterone makes me daft.

I recommend "Dear, Frankie" cause the acting is good and there's a lovely depiction of mother-love and all sorts of normal pains and longings. Emily Mortimer as the mom has a waif quality that is endearing. And Gerard Butler carries secrets in his face and posture, and we can only wonder at the stuff the screenplay doesn't fill in. And Sharon Small shines in the small moments we see her as Marie.

Yes, the pace is far from brisk, and the boy who plays Frankie seems to have a constricted range of facial expressions, but it's still a sweet tale and the ending is full of hope of new life.

Plus, hey, GERARD BUTLER. In a leather coat. Mmm.

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