Ah, “Ha”! The “Frances Ha” Movie

On Noah Baumbach’s Frances Ha (2013):

A close friendship ceases to be what it was previously.  The dream of becoming a professional dancer all but deflates.  The friendship and the dream belong to Frances Halliday (Greta Gerwig), she who becomes acquainted with transience.

Up to a point the film is a simulacrum of an old New Wave picture, for it was made in black and white and throws in some music Georges Delerue wrote for Truffaut.  Baumbach knows this to be a good mode for 1) showing us free-spiritedness (that of Frances) and 2) reminding us of the desultory nature of life.  In addition, the film can be seen as an homage to Truffaut.

Frances Ha is thin and almost undramatic—far from great.  I’m not sure it belongs in a movie theatre; DVD is fine.  It is, nevertheless, a small and canny work of art.

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