Watch Frankie and Hazel
- 1 hr 32 min
Frankie and Hazel is a heartwarming coming-of-age story from the year 2000. Directed by JoBeth Williams, it stars the legendary Joan Plowright, Edith Belmont, and a young Mischa Barton in the titular roles. The story takes place during the summer of 1958 in a small town in New Jersey. Frankie, a precocious thirteen-year-old girl, has recently lost her mother in a car accident. She's struggling to come to terms with her grief and is finding it hard to connect with her stern father, who is consumed with running his hardware store. Meanwhile, her best friend, Hazel, is getting ready to go away to camp for the first time.
Both girls are anxious about the coming changes in their lives. Frankie is feeling increasingly isolated and alone, and Hazel is nervous about being away from home for the first time. The two friends hatch a plan to spend one last summer together, and they embark on a series of adventures to make the most of their time before Hazel leaves.
The girls' plan involves a list of activities they want to complete before the end of the summer: going to the movies, swimming in the local quarry, and having a tea party in the woods. Along the way, they encounter several obstacles, including Hazel's overprotective mother, who is worried about her daughter's safety; a pair of teenage boys who steal their campfire; and Frankie's father, who disapproves of her spending so much time with Hazel.
Through it all, the girls remain steadfast in their friendship and determination to complete their list. Frankie, especially, grows in confidence and learns to face her fears. She begins to see that her father is not as distant as she thought and that she can make new connections with people around her. Hazel, too, learns to trust her own instincts and to stand up for what she believes in.
The movie's strength lies in its depiction of the girls' friendship. Plowright is excellent as the kind-hearted Mrs. MacIntyre, who provides a supportive presence in Frankie's life. Belmont is also impressive as Hazel's mother, whose love for her daughter is evident, even if it sometimes comes across as overbearing.
Barton, who was just fourteen when the movie was released, already displays the charm and acting chops that would make her a household name in the hit TV show The OC. As Frankie, she is a believable mix of vulnerability and spunk.
The movie does an excellent job of capturing the feel of the late 1950s, with its soda fountains, carhops, and Jukeboxes. The film's cinematography is also striking, with beautiful shots of the New Jersey countryside and the small town where the girls live.
Overall, Frankie and Hazel is a poignant and engaging story about friendship, loss, and the importance of living in the moment. It's a movie that will resonate with anyone who has ever experienced the ache of growing up and moving on. The message of the film is clear: cherish the people you love, and make the most of the time you have with them.
Frankie and Hazel is a 2000 drama with a runtime of 1 hour and 32 minutes. It has received moderate reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 5.8.