Dear Frankie

Dear Frankie

Shona Auerbach (2003)

12A Certificate


Our Score
Single mum Emily Mortimer tries to protect her young deaf son from the truth about his abusive father in this poignant Scottish drama from first-time feature director Shona Auerbach. This simple story is rich with precise observation and it tugs at the heartstrings without being maudlin or manipulative. Jack McElhone is wonderfully natural as nine-year-old Frankie, who corresponds religiously with his absentee dad, unaware that it's his devoted mother who's picking up the letters and faking the replies. With its sincere and perceptive script, the beautifully shot film vividly captures the raw emotions of its complex characters. Mortimer is particularly appealing, exuding a mixture of dignity and vulnerability, while Gerard Butler has magnetic allure as the stranger she pays to temporarily masquerade as Frankie's father. Despite occasional flickers of a fairy-tale ending, Auerbach ultimately resists the temptation, maintaining the realism and integrity that give this thoughtful feature its bittersweet charm.


Single mother Lizzie tries to protect her young son Frankie from learning the truth about his abusive father, and concocts a story about him being a sailor travelling the world. She even fakes letters to make the lad believe his absent dad cares. But when the ship he is supposed to be on board docks in their home town, Lizzie has to find someone to play the role of Frankie's father for the day. Drama, with Emily Mortimer, Gerard Butler and Jack McElhone.

Cast & Crew

Lizzie Emily Mortimer
The Stranger Gerard Butler
Frankie Jack McElhone
Marie Sharon Small
Nell Mary Riggans
Catriona Jayd Johnson
Ricky Monroe Sean Brown
Janet Anne Marie Timoney
Davey Cal Macaninch
Director Shona Auerbach
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Other Information

Language: EnglishColourTheatrical distributor: PathéGuidance: Contains some swearing.Available on: DVDReleased on: 21 Jan 2005