Rating (2.5 out of 5)
Summary: “Uncle Frank” is a perfectly fine movie. A well-acted film playing out over an hour and thirty minutes. While brief, nothing new was offered to viewers in this film. While exploring the pressures of being gay, the movie seems to gloss over it simultaneously. SPOILER!! The family deals too well with Frank’s final reveal. It was too Hollywood.
Adding to the confusion is Frank (Paul Bettany) seems to be the focus, as he is the one who struggles with his past, which has led to his alcoholism. However, the story is narrated by his niece Beth (Sophia Lillis), who is coming of age but feels out of place in the south. Beth learns about family and acceptance as she travels back with Uncle Frank to her Grandfather’s funeral. Because we split the story, the story loses some punch and results in a a flat narrative overall.
The most interesting character is Frank’s boyfriend, Wally (Peter Macdissi), who had to leave his life in Saudi Arabia because he is gay. His difficulties are explored in a brief 5 minutes of screen time but are never delved into again. Again, missing out on giving the movie some power and meaning.
Plot: Frank struggles to come out of the closet to his southern raised family.