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Frankie Starlight [VHS]


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Product Details

  • Actors: Corban Walker, Niall Toibin, Owen Roe, Gabriel Byrne, Anne Parillaud
  • Directors: Michael Lindsay-Hogg
  • Format: Closed-captioned, Color, NTSC
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Number of tapes: 1
  • Studio: Warner Home Video
  • VHS Release Date: April 29, 1997
  • Run Time: 100 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: 6304030762
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #202,274 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Editorial Reviews

The story of a dwarf born to a young French woman just after WW II, who lives his life by the stars, falls in love and becomes a literary celebrity when he publishes an "astronomical autobiography."

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

34 of 34 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 25, 2000
Format: VHS Tape
Noel Pearson, who produced My Left Foot, is the man who also gives us the delightful Frankie Starlight, a movie based on the equally delightful book by Chet Raymo, The Dork of Cork. Frankie Starlight, like The Dork of Cork, is a story that encompasses love, life and sometimes, even miracles.
Set in post-World War II Ireland, Frankie Starlight is the story of Frankie and his beautiful French mother Bernadette. At the age of eighteen, Bernadette left France and traveled to Ireland, smuggled aboard an American ship. Once in Ireland, Bernadette gives birth to a son, Frankie. With the help of a customs officer, Jack Kelly, she is able to raise Frankie in Dublin.
Astronomy plays a big part in this movie as Jack teaches Frankie about the stars, instilling in the young boy a lasting obsession with the cosmos.
As an adult, Frankie writes a novel based on his love for astronomy and his mother's recollections of her long-past relationship with and ex-GI. Frankie's book is the catalyst that pulls him out of his life of isolation, and as it does, we learn just how his mother's exploits helped to shape Frankie's own life.
Although Raymo is a lecturer in astronomy at Stonehill College in Massachusetts, he spends every summer in Vantry, County Kerry, Ireland. His love for both Ireland and the stars is readily apparent in both the book and in the movie.
The story of Frankie Starlight spans thirty years and is set in France, Ireland and in the United States. It was shot on location in Ireland. The French village scenes were shot on a constructed village on a farm in County Kildare and the Normandy scenes on beaches on the eastern coast of Ireland.
The central character, Frank Bois, is played by Alan Pentony and Corban Walker.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Wendy Hughes-Jelen on August 12, 2002
Format: VHS Tape
There are very few films that are so well told, and uniquely and beautifully so, that when you come across one that touches you so tenderly, it will never leave you. I will never forget seeing this film, and will probably need to watch it a few more times in my lifetime. It's like a very good book, a familiar friend, that you greet again and again over the years, and remember after a brief moment. Pure peotry.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Craig Connell on April 30, 2006
Format: VHS Tape
This is one of the great "unknowns" in the movie world: a great film seen by very few people. I'm still waiting for the DVD but not holding my breath. Thankfully, my VHS is still good. But like anything good, we'd like to share this with others and most people have never heard of this movie.

For those sensitive souls who enjoy a fascinating portrait of an unusual person or persons that is both sad and uplifting, this is your ticket. It has both, in spades.....a haunting film you can't forget. It's a tragic tale yet has a happy ending of sorts and leaves you feeling satisfied.

What it is, and I can't remember if it is based on real-life situation, is the story of a woman who has a dwarf for a son and what happens to the two of them, beginning in France, moving to Ireland, over to the United States and then back to Ireland.

Along the way, the mother, played so sadly by French actress Anne Parillaud (the original La Femme Nikita), gets involved with two men: Gabriel Byrne and Matt Dillon. All three of these adults are really interesting, likable people, but nothing like the dwarf, who is played magnificently by two actors. Alan Pentony plays "Frankie" has a child and a more lovable kid would be hard to find. Corbin Walker does a great job of playing the adult "Frankie." Trust me: you will not forget either of them.

Walker narrates the film, telling it mostly in flashback style, from his best-selling book. In addition to his mom and the two father-figures in his life, is a short story of Frankie's love affair with astronomy and the stars, hence "Frankie Starlight."

The only profane character in the movie is the book publisher who has two short scenes. That, and two quick sex scenes, give it the "R" rating. Otherwise, this is wonderful old-fashioned storytelling, the kind that makes you really care about the characters.
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