All summer long, I kept catching mention of a documentary called "May I Be Frank." Every mention of it said the same thing: Inspiring! Motivating! You'll laugh! You'll cry! There were several showings of the film around the Kansas City area, but I never got around to catching one of them, until it came to the Wynbrick Center in Liberty last Thursday. By then, I felt like I needed to see what all the hype was about.
Let me start by saying that I had never been to the Wynbrick Center before, but it is a lovely space for special events (namely, weddings) and wellness events (they host cooking classes, yoga and Pilates, and more). It's a beautiful, cozy building, so if you live near Liberty and are planning to get hitched and/or go on a detox and/or want to take up Pilates, you should check them out.
Before the showing of the documentary, there was a "healthy happy hour" going on. Unfortunately, I didn't get to check out all of the booths because I was volunteering at the check-in table, but there were juice and tea mocktails being served, samples of dark chocolate and non-dairy truffles, and booths from area businesses, including a yoga center, a health food store, and other local holistic businesses.
After the ~100 attendees filed in, mixed and mingled, and found their seats, it was showtime.
And you know what? It lives up to the hype. I don't really know what my expectations were for the film before it started. The opening credits are a little hokey, and I admit that the cheesy acting in the opening sequence gave me my doubts that I was in for a poorly made film, but it gets better. It's all about the raw footage, it's all about the actual events, it's all about Frank.
Frank is quite a character. He's straight outta Brooklyn, says what he thinks, has no filter, but yet is so open-minded. In some ways, specifically the lack of mouth filter and his physical appearance, Frank reminds me of my own father. (But my father would NEVER go on this raw food, spiritual cleanse like Frank did, unfortunately.) Frank is very likable and I found myself rooting for him almost from the start. His sharp sense of humor makes the movie that much more interesting, but his weaker moments caught me off guard and, I admit, those moments tugged at those proverbial heart strings.
If you can catch a screening of this movie in your neck of the woods, I highly recommend watching it. It's really a feel-good movie in a literal sense -- I felt so good and warm and happy after watching it!
After this night's showing in Liberty, Frank appeared for a Q & A after the film. WOW. He really went through quite a transformation! It was nice to get a little more info about what happened after the movie ended (and really, I feel like they should have just kept filming), but I won't reveal too much here, in case any of you get a chance to catch a screening and meet Frank. After most of the guests had left, I made sure to tell Frank how much I enjoyed the film and ask for a picture for my blog. Before I could even complete my sentence, he hooked me into the biggest, most genuine hug I may have ever received.
You can't quite tell in the picture, but he's wearing a Cafe Gratitude t-shirt that reads, "I love my life." I think most people would have been able to guess that about Frank, with or without that t-shirt.