Frank and Lola is a stylish thriller, come love story come film noir from first-time writer/director Matthew Ross. Frank is played with brooding magnificence by Michael Shannon and the fragile, vulnerable and mysterious Lola by Imogen Poots.
In this film, the obsessive lover role is given to the male lead. Michael Shannon convincing conveys the irrationality and all-consuming power love can have on a person. Frank and Lola is stylish and dark both in subject matter and tone – it compels you to give it all your attention. There’s also consumption of a different kind through the delicious meals that Frank cooks for Lola as well as others in the film. For the launch of the DVD, BRWC was invited to emulate Frank’s deftness as a chef sadly without the truffles but duck confit cigar rolls and freshly made tagliatelle.
However, even though Frank’s role is that of a chef – the love and obsession he has for producing the perfect dish are transferred to slavish devotion to Lola even when it is clear that she is not all she seems. What’s that old saying again – Love is Blind and so very true in Frank’s case.
With two talented actors in the principle roles and a notable supporting cast – Frank and Lola is an interesting examination of love. The problem is the moving premise – that works with an experienced filmmaker such as Jeff Nichols and his film of Midnight Special. In Frank and Lola it would have been better if the film just chose one premise and stuck with that.
Having said all of that, it’s refreshing to see Michael Shannon as a romantic lead albeit a deranged one.
Frank and Lola is out now on DVD and Digital Download.
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