Dear Frankie is a British film released in 2005. It is about a deaf 9-year-old boy named Frankie (Jack McElhone), his mother, Lizzie (Emily Mortimer), and her chain-smoking mother, Nell, who have all just moved to Glasgow, England. The father Frankie never knew, we soon learn, is away at sea on a ship called the Accra. Frankie writes frequently to his father and plots his Dad’s travels on a map in his room. But we soon learn that all of Frankie's letters are received and answered not by his father, but by his mother from a post-office box set up by Lizzie.
She has been moving frequently to avoid an abusive father. But her scheme begins to unravel when Frankie learns the Accra will soon dock in Glasgow. She decides the only way out of this predicament is to find a man to pretend to be Frankie's dad, just for one day. After difficulty and with trepidation she finally hires a rugged looking stranger (Gerald Butler) who is in town for a few days and agrees to play the role. How does Frankie react to his “father”? Does Lizzie extricate herself from this dilemma? What happens when the stranger leaves on the Accra? What surprises await us as we watch this hoax unfold?
This is a moving and well-acted film. Emily Mortimer is a strong single mother who has gone through hurt in her marriage, and is trying to protect her son. Gerald Butler portrays a tough charisma and integrity as the stranger. Jack McElhone is lovable and innocent. This is a movie about overcoming hurt, protecting family, and dealing with tough situations we create for ourselves.