British newcomer Harris Dickinson crackles with energy as the enigmatic Frankie, a virulently macho Brooklyn teen, in this gripping investigation of repressed sexual desire in a hyper-masculine environment. In a tale of two worlds destined to collide, he spends days with friends, hanging around the beach and showing off to girls. But night-time finds him hustling off alone for furtive gay hook-ups with men he meets online, or cruising for sex near the Coney Island boardwalk.
This impressive sophomore drama from the director Eliza Hittman has added poignancy in Frankie’s formerly tender relationship with his mother, who looks after his father as he lies in bed, wasting away from a terminal illness. The liberated world of Manhattan might only be a train ride from his home, but for Frankie it’s light years away.