Home > 2009 Movie Reviews > The Merry Gentleman Review

The Merry Gentleman Review


The Merry Gentleman

"The Merry Gentleman" is Michael Keaton’s directorial debut. Keaton succeeds at bringing to life two mysterious and compelling characters and keeping you in suspense throughout the entire movie. Great film!

My rating 4 Stars

After her husband, Michael, hit her again, Kate Frazier (Kelly Macdonald) decided that she had finally had enough of the spousal abuse. She waited for Michael who was a police officer to leave for work; she took the opportunity to sneak out and moved to Chicago. There she started fresh and attempted to forget the terrible life that she had endured.

Kate was a young woman who was an immigrant of Scotland. She had an adorable Scottish accent that everyone seemed to love. She was a kind woman, very honest, friendly, but a little naive as well. Once she arrived in Chicago, she had no problems finding a job.  She started working as a secretary answering phones at a law firm. She had no trouble making new friends, but she wasn’t comfortable talking about her past and her abusive marriage.   However, secretly everyone knew something was going on.

Kate had been working for a while and she was just starting to be at ease at her new job. One day, she noticed that it had started to snow. She was a fan of the snow, it made her happy. As she looked up to admire its beauty she noticed a man on the ledge of the building across the street from the law firm. For a moment she thought the man was about to jump so she screamed at him. The man on the ledge was startled and fell backwards on to the roof of the building. It looks as though she saved his life.

The man on the ledge was Frank Logan (Michael Keaton), a hired hit man. He had just finished a job just before Kate saw him and startled him. He had been hired to kill one of the lawyers that worked at Kate’s law firm. However, just before he shot the man, as he was looking through the scope of his rifle, he had noticed Kate.  Something about her was very mystifying and alluring, but he had to finish his job. It’s not clear if Frank was going to jump that night or not, but one thing is certain, after every job, Frank would attempt to kill himself, but would always change his mind. That night, in my opinion, he was serious about jumping, but Kate saved his life by startling him.

After the ledge incident Kate called the police to report what she had seen. She had no idea that someone had just killed one of the partners. She only found out about that the next day after the detectives came back to question her more about what she saw. However, she really didn’t see anything. To her, she just saved some poor guy’s life. Ironically, after she found out that this man may have killed someone, she didn’t feel that good about herself any more.

A day or two later Kate and Frank met. This was no accident, although Frank made sure that it looked like one. He had been taken with her since the moment he laid eyes on her or did he just want to see if she had recognized him from that night? Was he developing feelings for Kate or did he have plans to dispose of her if she knew who he was and what he had done? We are kept in suspense for most of the film. Keaton who also directed the film did a really nice job at keeping that tension high. The suspense was mounted further because of a relationship that Kate had been developing with one of the detectives, now the plot thickens and you often wonder if Frank just wanted to make sure that Kate was not feeding the cops information about him.

We don’t know much about Frank. What we do know is very subtle. He hardly ever spoke, but his lack of words spoke volumes. Frank was very spiritual, ironic, isn’t it? It is obvious that he believed in something more than just this life. He was quite an interesting character. I just wish we knew more about him. It is because of his spirituality that he felt so much shame for the things he had done. God only knows what he said to himself after each job to change his mind about ending his own life.

I really liked this story. It was very sweet and filled with emotions. It was really nicely performed by everyone especially Michael Keaton who I haven’t seen since The Paper. Frank’s character was very complex. He said very little, but spoke so much with just his mere presence. It was quite a performance, one worth checking out. I thought Keaton did a great job in both directing and performing in this film. If you like movies like Leon, The Professional, then I think you are really going to enjoy this film.

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