Forgiving the Franklins

Director: Jay Floyd
Screenwriters: Jay Floyd

Institute History

  • 2006 Sundance Film Festival


Forgiving the Franklins revels in revelations of both the biblical and sexual kind.

The Franklins are so ordinary they are almost transparent. They go about their repressed, southern-variety, God-fearing lives until a miracle happens—they have a fatal automobile accident. Did I say miracle? They don't die, exactly, but in one respect, their lives are taken away. It is instantly questionable if the new and improved Franklins are better or worse, yet one thing is certain: it is impossible for them ever again to conform to the conservative values bullying their community.

Jay Floyd is a director with big ideas, and his refreshing debut feature is replete with big-idea, low-budget splendor. In Forgiving the Franklins, Floyd blatantly toys with issues of hypocrisy, bigotry, and sexual repression, commingled with a prevailing touch of the absurd. At times this even resembles a Christian educational film, but that's half the fun. The cast is innately in tune and plays along, using the proper mock righteousness or matter-of-fact abandon. This collaboration is responsible for images you won't soon forget . . .and maybe some you wish you could. But the lesson, after all, is forgiveness.

— John Cooper

Screening Details

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