So I watched Frances Ha the other day. There’s something about Greta Gerwig that keeps making me go back to the well, even though her starring dramatic roles almost invariably leave me cold. I prefer my Greta as a supporting or ensemble player in genre pictures. Like in The House of the Devil or Baghead. I thought with Frances, perhaps she’d finally been offered the opportunity to make the film she wanted. After all, she’s got a writing credit.
Well, Frances isn’t a particularly good movie. Sort of a mid-period Woody Allen imitator, with a dash of Lena Dunham and Whit Stillman thrown in for good measure. It’s okay, and it’s definitely an improvement over her virtually unwatchable collaborations with Joe Swanberg (at least Hannah and Nights). But it still is at its core a non-Wes Anderson Noah Baumbach picture, which for me is always prone to disappointment.
Will I rush out to see any forthcoming GG features? Likely I’m just as cautious as I had been before, so no. But I can’t help thinking there’s a spark there that is really appealing. And if she would only get a more strong-armed agent, she might make better career choices overall.