As satisfyingly ‘fun’ Parasite was, what a refreshing change Saint Frances is to the violence of current cinema. St. Frances is also a shining light in a predominately moody selection currently showing at the Cine-World Film Fest (not counting A Faithful Man, but sorry Frenchies, you’re silly, not moving).
Saint Frances written by its star Kelly O’Sullivan (think younger Amy Schumer in humor or younger Kate McKinnon in looks) works on many levels. Pro-choice, pro-you-don’t-have-to-be-a-parent-to-be-a-great- life-contributor, pro-nebulous relationship status and anti-religion (on the latter, Catholicism’s the target, due to its self-shaming dogma).
The film’s subject matter in a nutshell: a woman ambiguous about children becomes nanny and forms a bond with the child of whom she’s in charge.
Poolling two men afterward, Vince, an astute lawyer from Canada and Robert (?) a local cinemaphile, both men confirmed that Saint Frances is not just a chick flick and enjoyed the film as much as me. Vince even wowed me by naming, without my prodding, I cross my heart, PEANUT BUTTER FALCON as his favorite movie of the year.
I know, FIRST: Willem Dafoe Best Actor, THEN: Peanut Butter Falcon Best Original Screenplay.
But back to Saint Frances…if it comes back for a longer run, go see this. And while O’Sullivan goes for dialogue and scene shock value with menstrual and abortion talk and blood (clearly redundant, and a bit insensitive and too frank at times), no one around me seemed offended in the slightest.
So what they hey, it’s an anything goes culture. Go see Saint Frances, directed by, in his first attempt at feature length, Alex Thompson, with cutie Kate Sullivan as lead, and super adorable and amazingly steady little 5 year old Ramona Edith-Williams.