MOVIEmeter
Top 5000
Down 559 this week

Beginners (2010)

7.2
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.2/10 from 56,407 users   Metascore: 81/100
Reviews: 123 user | 247 critic | 36 from Metacritic.com

A young man is rocked by two announcements from his elderly father: that he has terminal cancer, and that he has a young male lover.

Director:

Writer:

Watch Trailer
0Check in
0Share...

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 23 titles
created 03 Sep 2011
 
a list of 21 titles
created 07 Nov 2011
 
a list of 36 titles
created 12 Jun 2012
 
a list of 22 titles
created 15 Jun 2012
 
a list of 25 titles
created 07 Nov 2012
 

Search for "Beginners" on Amazon.com

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Beginners (2010)

Beginners (2010) on IMDb 7.2/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Beginners.

User Polls

Won 1 Oscar. Another 26 wins & 12 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A pair of young lovers flee their New England town, which causes a local search party to fan out and find them.

Director: Wes Anderson
Stars: Jared Gilman, Kara Hayward, Bruce Willis
An Education (2009)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A coming-of-age story about a teenage girl in 1960s suburban London, and how her life changes with the arrival of a playboy nearly twice her age.

Director: Lone Scherfig
Stars: Carey Mulligan, Peter Sarsgaard, Alfred Molina
Half Nelson (2006)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

An inner-city junior high school teacher with a drug habit forms an unlikely friendship with one of his students after she discovers his secret.

Director: Ryan Fleck
Stars: Ryan Gosling, Anthony Mackie, Shareeka Epps
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

In 1985 Dallas, electrician and hustler Ron Woodroof works around the system to help AIDS patients get the medication they need after he is himself diagnosed with the disease.

Director: Jean-Marc Vallée
Stars: Matthew McConaughey, Jennifer Garner, Jared Leto
A Single Man (2009)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

An English professor, one year after the sudden death of his boyfriend, is unable to cope with his typical days in 1960s Los Angeles.

Director: Tom Ford
Stars: Colin Firth, Julianne Moore, Matthew Goode
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  

The adventures of Gustave H, a legendary concierge at a famous European hotel between the wars, and Zero Moustafa, the lobby boy who becomes his most trusted friend.

Director: Wes Anderson
Stars: Ralph Fiennes, F. Murray Abraham, Mathieu Amalric
The Hunt (2012)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  

A teacher lives a lonely life, all the while struggling over his son's custody. His life slowly gets better as he finds love and receives good news from his son, but his new luck is about to be brutally shattered by an innocent little lie.

Director: Thomas Vinterberg
Stars: Mads Mikkelsen, Thomas Bo Larsen, Annika Wedderkopp
Short Term 12 (2013)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

A 20-something supervising staff member of a residential treatment facility navigates the troubled waters of that world alongside her co-worker and longtime boyfriend.

Director: Destin Cretton
Stars: Brie Larson, Frantz Turner, John Gallagher Jr.
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

Lester Burnham, a depressed suburban father in a mid-life crisis, decides to turn his hectic life around after developing an infatuation for his daughter's attractive friend.

Director: Sam Mendes
Stars: Kevin Spacey, Annette Bening, Thora Birch
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

Will Hunting, a janitor at MIT, has a gift for mathematics but needs help from a psychologist to find direction in his life.

Director: Gus Van Sant
Stars: Robin Williams, Matt Damon, Ben Affleck
Talk to Her (2002)
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

Two men share an odd friendship while they care for two women who are both in deep comas.

Director: Pedro Almodóvar
Stars: Rosario Flores, Javier Cámara, Darío Grandinetti
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.8/10 X  

Upon admittance to a mental institution, a brash rebel rallies the patients to take on the oppressive head nurse.

Director: Milos Forman
Stars: Jack Nicholson, Louise Fletcher, Michael Berryman
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
Andy
...
Elliot
...
Georgia
...
Young Oliver Fields
...
Shauna
...
Liz
...
Party Person
Luke Diliberto ...
Green Witch
...
Magician
...
The Sads
Hana Jane ...
The Sads (as Hana Hwang)
Samuel T. Ritter ...
The Sads
Edit

Storyline

It's 2003. Thirty-eight year old graphic artist Oliver Fields has just lost his father Hal Fields to cancer, after Oliver's mother Georgia Fields passed away five years earlier. Oliver is naturally a sullen man due to his growing up relationship with his parents (his mother who had a unique view on life) and watching his parents' cordial but somewhat distant relationship with each other, but is more so now because of his personal family loss. Oliver embarks on a relationship with Anna, a French actress. Oliver is hoping that his re-energized relationship with Hal following Georgia's death and Hal's new outlook on life during that time will show Oliver how to act in a loving relationship. After Georgia's death, Hal came out of the closet and began to live with a joie de vivre that did not exist before, which included an open relationship with a much younger man named Andy. Oliver's relationship with Anna has other obstacles, including Anna's own vagabond lifestyle and Oliver needing to... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

death | terrier | flashback | cancer | actress | See more »

Taglines:

This is what love feels like.

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and some sexual content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

| |  »

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

9 June 2011 (Germany)  »

Also Known As:

Beginners  »

Box Office

Budget:

$3,200,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$141,340 (USA) (3 June 2011)

Gross:

$5,776,314 (USA) (2 September 2011)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

|

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

'Melanie Laurent' was cast after director Mike Mills saw a video of her on Youtube giving an interview where she was smoking and wearing no makeup. See more »

Goofs

Oliver (Ewan McGregor) goes to a fancy party as Austrian psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud, but his accent is more Bavarian than Austrian. See more »

Quotes

Oliver: Go and have experiences with your own people. I'll be right here... I'm a human. I'm not a dog... And you're a Jack Russell and that's a breed... Your personality was created by this guy John Russell, who was a hunting enthusiast in the 1800's. And he bred your ancestors for their stamina and their courage for the hunt. You think you're you and you want to chase the foxes, but... other people planted that in you years ago. And now somewhat arbitrarily you're considered very cute by us humans. ...
See more »

Connections

References Superman (1978) See more »

Soundtracks

The Real Thing
Written by Tom Wolfe and Manish Raval
Performed by The Shakers
Courtesy of Aperture Music
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
A deeply original and profound piece.
17 October 2011 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Mike Mills' 2005 debut Thumbsucker is a film whose quirky charm was completely lost on me, but where that film was drenched in artificiality, he somehow turned that charm into something grounded and serene with his sophomore feature Beginners. This is a movie that honestly transcends words, for me. The kind of impact it had on me will never be able to be described, but it's one that touched me at my soul and deeply moved me in a profound way. The film is built around this message from Mills' personal life that you have the capacity to assess your situation at any point in life and make a change for the better. However, in the most un-Hollywood sense, Mills never beats you over the head with the message or panders to it's audience; it just exists in it's own world and you can embrace it or not, but the film doesn't exist solely for that reason. It may not particularly exist for any reason, it just exists and for me, that was all it needed to do to hit me right in the heart.

In taking on a subject matter as emotionally strong as this (a father coming out of the closet at a late age and then being diagnosed with terminal cancer), Mills was open to a plethora of moments for overbearing melodrama to bring the audience to tears, but he never embraces this in a traditional way at all. He treats the subject with this delicate, grounded approach that feels fully original and honestly quite daring in it's subtlety, leading to an experience much more effective than if he had gone the traditional route. His background in graphic design leads to some wonderfully charming editing techniques and Woody Allen circa Annie Hall uniqueness in the story structure, but it never overpowers the center that is ultimately a charming, emotional and entirely natural character study. The study of a young man finally seeing who his father is, contrasted with his first experience in true love. All three of the central characters charmed me off my feet, but Mills creates genuine, flawed and sometimes annoying human beings out of all of them.

Once again, as with everything else in the film, he transcends the general approach and just creates these full, real human beings. Oliver and Anna instantly became one of my favorite couples in the history of cinema, with the incomparable chemistry between Ewan McGregor and Melanie Laurent, and Hal reminded me so much of my grandfather it really brought me to tears several times. Mills plays everything in an understated way, but by doing this he allows the film to really get under your skin and sink in, a much more effective technique than just hitting you on the surface over and over again. The performances by all three are truly out of this world.

I find McGregor to be a great talent who rarely gets the opportunity to demonstrate that, but this character allows him to give his finest performance to date. He is so grounded and honest in his portrayal, bringing comedy both light and dark along with genuine emotion that sunk into me deeply over and over again. I related to his faults and his gifts and McGregor really made me feel like I understood this guy through and through. Laurent is a delight and makes you fall in love with her almost instantly; again I have to mention the overwhelming chemistry that the two of these had. Before we even got a chance to fully comprehend their relationship, I was in tears by the simple act of them holding hands with one another. Mills and Laurent take a character that could have been conventional and tossed aside for the father-son dynamic and make a fully-fleshed person out of her, complete with her own demons and turmoil and I fell in love with her all the way.

Then comes Christopher Plummer as Oliver's father, who is everything you could want from this guy; charming, chaotic, filled with life and regret. He's absolutely enchanting and devastating simultaneously, a guy that makes you want to live your life to fullest potential. In fact, enchanting is a word that is perfect for the film as a whole. Beyond the authenticity and the emotional impact that it had on me (which is not small by any notion), the film truly seems to dance at times and it's in those moments that I felt something...beautiful and serene beyond anything that words could hope to encapsulate. This movie transcended everything for me.


53 of 67 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Can someone explain Plummer's acclaim? Hooker187
'This is what ___ looks like' davidzvara
So why the 'R' rating? dperron
Adored the dog (arthur) sunny-29
i really enjoyed this film gjhines
Redemption Incomplete magnoliaspringsal
Discuss Beginners (2010) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?