Movie wise we’ve come along way since Basil Dearden’s 1961 film Victim the first British film to use the word homosexual which got it banned in the USA. Many people are of the opinion that it played an influential role in both liberalising attitudes and the laws in Britain regarding same sex relationships.
Now, what was a controversial subject is now dealt with in lightweight romantic American comedies like 2010’s Beginners. Written and directed by Mike Mills and based on the true life coming out of his father at the grand age of 75, just five years before he passed away and at a time when he was supposed to be watching diluted age related films at the cinema! Basically a love story that centers around Oliver, a graphic designer, his deceased parents Hal and Georgina, his fathers much younger lover Andy, a French actress Anna with whom Oliver begins a love affair and a rather annoying Jack Russell called Arthur. The film starts with the death of Hal and is told in flashbacks going back to when Oliver was a boy and from the time that his quirky repressed part Jewish mother died and his father declares his true sexuality after 45 years of ‘happy married life’ and spends the last years of his life finding himself.
|Plummer's probably the best thing about this film.|
Ewan McGregor plays the emotionally retarded Oliver, Christopher Plummer, who has been appearing in feature films since Sidney Lumet’s 1958 Stage Struck is Hal, a role that won him Best Supporting Actor in the Golden Globes and the Academy Awards. French actress Melanie Laurent who will be familiar for appearances in such films as Days of Glory (2006), Tarantino’s Inglourious Basterds (2009) and the wonderful Le Concert (2009) is Anna. A meaningful, rather sad love story with some subtle and gentle humour but a film that’s extremely slow at times. The younger members of my family thought it tedious and barely lasted halfway! Oh well can’t win them all.