|Directed by||Mike Mills|
|Produced by||Leslie Urdang
Jay Van Hoy
Miranda de Pencier
|Written by||Mike Mills|
|Music by||Roger Neill
|Editing by||Olivier Bugge Coutté|
Parts & Labor
|Distributed by||Focus Features|
|Running time||104 minutes1|
Beginners is a 2010 American romantic comedy-drama film written and directed by Mike Mills. It tells the story of Oliver, a man reflecting on the life and death of his father, Hal, while trying to forge a new romantic relationship with a woman, Anna, dealing with father issues of her own.
Beginners premiered at the 2010 Toronto International Film Festival, where the Los Angeles Times heralded it as a "heady, heartfelt film" with a cast who has "a strong sense of responsibility to their real-world counterparts".3 Plummer received numerous accolades, including the 2011 Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor, for his performance.
The film is structured as a series of interconnected flashbacks. Following the death of his father Hal, Oliver reflects on their relationship following the death of Oliver's mother, Georgia. Shortly after her death, Hal came out to his son and began exploring life as an openly gay man. He becomes active in the gay community, finds love and becomes more honest with himself and with his son. As a result, Oliver and Hal become closer during this time. Shortly after Hal's death, Oliver meets Anna, a French actress, at a party. Inspired by his father's attitude towards the end of his life and their relationship, Oliver decides to pursue a romance with her.
- Ewan McGregor as Oliver Fields
- Christopher Plummer as Hal Fields, Oliver's father
- Mélanie Laurent as Anna Wallace, a French actress with whom Oliver begins a love affair
- Goran Višnjić as Andy, Hal's much younger lover
- Mary Page Keller as Georgia Fields, Oliver's mother
- Kai Lennox as Elliot, Oliver's friend and co-worker
- China Shavers as Shauna, Oliver's friend and co-worker
- Cosmo as Arthur
The film is based on the true-life coming out of Mills' father at the age of 75, five years before his death.4
The film has received positive reviews upon release. Film review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes reports that 84% of critics gave the film a positive review based on 147 reviews with a "Certified Fresh" rating, with an average score of 7.3/10. The site's consensus states: "Wearing its twee heart on its sleeve, Beginners explores the depths of modern, multi-generational romance with wit and depth."6 At Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating out of 100 to reviews from mainstream critics, Beginners received an average score of 81, based on 36 reviews, citing "universal acclaim".7
Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times gave the film three-and-a-half stars out of four, saying, "It's a hopeful fable with deep optimism and a cheerful style that kids itself."8 Peter Debruge from Variety said the film is "deeply poignant and disarmingly personal".9
Beginners won the 2011 Gotham Award for Best Feature, shared with The Tree of Life.10 Christopher Plummer won a Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor in a Motion Picture 2012, and the Denver Film Critics Society Award, the Los Angeles Film Critics Association Award, the National Board of Review Award and the Online Film Critics Award, all for Best Supporting Actor.11
The film was nominated for the Satellite Award for Best Supporting Actor (Christopher Plummer)12 and was also nominated for Independent Spirit Awards for Best Director, Best Screenplay, and Best Supporting Male.13 At the 84th Academy Awards, Plummer won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor.1415
- "Beginners (15)". British Board of Film Classification. Retrieved 2011-12-03.
- Beginners at Box Office Mojo
- Olsen, Mark (2011-09-05). "Beginners has a piece of Mike Mills' soul". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2011-09-13.
- Bradshaw, James (2011-09-10). "Beginners: A late dash out of the close". The Globe and Mail (Toronto, Ontario, Canada). Archived from the original on 16 September 2010. Retrieved 2010-09-13.
- Dargis, Manohla (2011-06-02). "Beginners, With Christopher Plummer and Ewan McGregor – Review". The New York Times.
- "Beginners". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved December 3, 2013.
- "Beginners". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved 2011-08-31.
- Ebert, Roger. "Beginners". Chicago Sun-Times.
- Szalai, Georg (November 28, 2011). "Gotham Awards 2011: 'Tree of Life', 'Beginners' Tie for Best Feature". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved November 28, 2011.
- Cangialosi, Jason (January 11, 2012). "Denver Film Critics Society Announces 2012 Award Winners". Yahoo! Movies. Retrieved January 11, 2012.
- "Oscars: Christopher Plummer wins best supporting actor; 'Hugo' leads with five awards". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved 27 February 2012.
- "Nominees and Winners for the 84th Academy Awards". Academy Awards of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (Oscars). Retrieved 21 February 2012.
- Official website
- Beginners at the Internet Movie Database
- Beginners at AllMovie
- Beginners at Box Office Mojo
- Beginners at Rotten Tomatoes
- Beginners at Metacritic
- IONCINEMA.com TIFF 2010 Viral: Mike Mills' Beginners