Frankie Starlight

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Frankie Starlight
Frankie Starlight.jpg
Directed by Michael Lindsay-Hogg
Produced by Noel Pearson
Written by Ronan O'Leary
Chet Raymo
Based on The Dork of Cork
by Chet Raymo
Music by Elmer Bernstein
Cinematography Paul Laufer
Edited by Ruth Foster
Distributed by Fine Line Features
Release date
22 November 1995
Running time
101 minutes
Country  USA
Language English
Box office $78,168 (USA)[1]

Frankie Starlight is a 1995 dramaromantic war film directed by Michael Lindsay-Hogg. The screenplay was written by Ronan O'Leary and Chet Raymo,[2] based on the internationally best-selling novel The Dork of Cork by Raymo.[3]


Frank Bois writes a successful first novel and finds himself looking back over his life. His mother Bernadette (Parillaud) was a French woman who, after the death of her friends and family in World War II, hid herself aboard an Allied war ship heading to Ireland, where she exchanged sexual favors for silence among the soldiers who found her on board. A nice customs agent, Jack Kelly (Byrne), allowed Bernadette to enter Ireland illegally, and they soon became a couple, even though she was already pregnant from one of the soldiers from the ship.

Bernadette gave birth to Frankie (Pentony), who suffered from dwarfism. As he grew older, Frankie developed romantic feelings for Jack's daughter Emma (Cates), who did not share his feelings, while Jack taught astronomy to Frankie. Eventually, Bernadette met Terry Klout (Dillon), an American soldier she had met on the war ship, who offered to marry her. Bernadette and Frankie went with Terry to his home in Texas, but both mother and son felt they didn't belong, so they returned to the Irish home they loved. An older Bernadette eventually committed suicide, and Frank then used his life as source material for his writing.

Principal cast[edit]

Actor Role
Gabriel Byrne Jack Kelly
Anne Parillaud Bernadette
Matt Dillon Terry Klout
Corban Walker / Alan Pentony Frank Bois
Georgina Cates Emma
Dearbhla Molloy Effa Kelly

Critical reception[edit]

Janet Maslin of The New York Times thought the film was flawed but decent and did not think highly of Parillaud's acting:


  1. ^ Box Office at
  2. ^ "Frankie Starlight". Turner Classic Movies. Atlanta: Turner Broadcasting System (Time Warner). Retrieved July 21, 2016. 
  3. ^ Raymo, Chet (1994). The Dork of Cork (Reprint ed.). New York City: Grand Central Publishing. ISBN 978-0446670005. 
  4. ^ Maslin, Janet (22 November 1995). "Original ''New York Times'' review". Retrieved 2011-01-18. 

External links[edit]