Renowned Hollywood screenwriter who rose to prominence by signing the film scripts American Beauty and successful series Six feet Under ground and True BloodAlan Ball was inspired in part by his family history to write My uncle frank, a luminous drama that warms the heart.
Awarded the Audience Prize at the last Deauville Festival, My uncle frank recounts the journey of Beth (Sophia Lillis), an 18-year-old girl who leaves her hometown in North Carolina to study in New York and to be closer to her uncle Frank (Paul Bettany) whom she has always admired.
However, what she does not know and that she will discover on the spot, is that Frank is homosexual and that he has always hidden this secret from his very conservative family in the southern United States (the story takes place in 1973 ). He has been living for 10 years with the same man, a great, sympathetic Saudi Arabian (Peter Macdissi). The sudden death of Frank’s father will force him to return to his family and especially to confront the ghosts of his past.
For this second feature film behind the camera (after Stolen purity, released in 2007), Alan Ball offers a touching film that delicately mixes drama and comedy. As he had done in his previous works (notably in his cult series Six feet Under ground), Ball has succeeded in building a gallery of endearing characters, lovingly embodied by actors of great talent.
For his first major film role in years, Paul Bettany offers a solid performance in the skin of this man who has had to hide his homosexuality from his family throughout his life. At his side, the young Sophia Lillis brings a beautiful candor to the trio of main actors. Without being particularly original and despite some predictable dramatic reversals, My uncle frank goes straight to the heart and brings a touch of optimism that feels good in these dark times. A great discovery.
My uncle frank ★★★ 1/2
An Alan Ball film Starring Paul Bettany, Sophia Lillis and Judy Greer.
Available on Amazon Prime