109- Beginners [9.0]
Imaginatively explores the hilarity, confusion, and surprises of love through the evolving consciousness of Oliver. Oliver meets the irreverent and unpredictable Anna only months after his father Hal has passed away. This new love floods Oliver with memories of his father who – following 44 years of marriage – came out of the closet at age 75 to live a full, energized, and wonderfully tumultuous gay life.
What a beautiful, moving film. Beginners is an ode to many things– second chances, grand realizations, and finding true love. Sounds awfully cliche, doesn’t it? Director Mike Mills infuses his screenplay with such wonderful little moments that you can’t help but be bottled up by the stories of all that are involved. Beginners is occasionally cute, but not on a false indie film way; rather, the sweetness of discovering or uncovering a crucial part of one’s life is portrayed in a whimsical, if not occasionally frustrating light. I feel as if this film may be unfortunately pigeonholed as a “cancer film” or a a “gay film”, and while those are parts of Beginners, it’d be deceitful to make it that simple. Beginners is a movie worth celebrating because it touches on moments so universal and makes it all feel very truthful at the same time.