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Film / Franklyn

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"Somebody once said that religion was deemed by the commoners as true, by the wise as false, and by the rulers as useful. The only thing I believe is that my name is Jonathan Preest. And tonight, I'm gonna kill a man."

Franklyn is a 2008 British film directed by Gerald McMorrow and starring Eva Green, Ryan Phillippe, Sam Riley, and Bernard Hill. Split between London and the gloomy metropolis that is Meanwhile City, the plot revolves around an art student obsessed with death, a young man recently left at the altar who is in search of true love, a masked vigilante who stalks Meanwhile City in pursuit of the enigmatic Individual and a father searching for his missing son. As the film progresses, these seemingly unconnected tales are tied together as Preest closes in on his objective.

Not to be confused with Franklin the Turtle.

This film includes examples of:

  • Angel Unaware: Both Sally and the janitor at the hospital are implied to be this, seeing as they each appear to the protagonists to guide and impart wisdom, and no never interact with anyone but the protagonist they are talking to in that scene.
  • Badass Longcoat: Preest has one.
  • Bizarrchitecture: Meanwhile City is straight out of a German expressionist's nightmares.
  • Dark World: Meanwhile City exists as a dark and imaginary manifestation of London.
  • Expy:
  • Imaginary Friend: Milo's childhood friend Sally turns out to be one of these.
  • Mad Artist: Emilia, a suicidal artist, creates videos of her suicide attempts and the efforts of the ambulance crew to resuscitate her.
  • Maybe Magic, Maybe Mundane: Obviously, a lot of what the characters experience especially Preest is revealed to be the imaginary product of a disturbed mind, but there are an awful lot of coincidences...
  • Never My Fault: It's implied that Peter's negligence was the cause of his daughter's death, which he deals with by insisting it was God's will, and this is part of what sent his son over the edge.
  • Never Trust a Trailer: Not only does it imply that most of the movie takes place in Meanwhile City, but that Emilia is the little girl Preest "failed to save."
  • Only Sane Man: Preest sees himself as this.
  • Outliving One's Offspring: Peter's daughter died before the start of the film. By the end of the film, his son has died as well.
  • Poor Communication Kills: Sure, Margaret, leave your husband because he was raping your daughter, but don't tell her that's why you did it, get her any treatment, or even acknowledge that it happened. That definitely won't screw her up.
  • Religion Is Wrong: The main contention of Johnathan Preest, the only atheist in the faith-dominated Meanwhile City.
  • Sinister Minister: The Individual, head of the shadowy Duplex Ride cult.
  • Sunglasses at Night
  • Through the Eyes of Madness: Preest is actually a former soldier driven mad by the death of his sister, for which he holds his father responsible
  • Title Drop: The title becomes a significant plot point in the final act of the film.
  • Villainous Fashion Sense: The Ministry Clerics dress in Tophats, Dark Glasses, long black jackets, and really tight black pants.
  • White Mask of Doom: Preest's.