Relationships examined in film Beginners

Spotlight Films offer the film Beginners, starring Ewan McGregor and Christopher Plummer at the Gem Theatre.

On Tuesday, Dec. 6, Spotlight Films will be offering the film Beginners.

This sometimes darkly humorous, charming and unconventional movie opens with Oliver Field (Ewan McGregor from The Men Who Stare at Goats, Star Wars: Episodes I, II and III and Trainspotting), mourning the passing of his father Hal (Christopher Plummer of The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus and The Sound of Music fame).

It is essentially divided into two love stories, one before the death of his father, which Oliver narrates, and the other Oliver’s, as he comes to grips with the confusion inspired by his father’s coming out at the respectful age of 75 – six months after the death of Oliver’s mother Georgia (Mary Page Keller).

The marriage between Hal and Georgia was cordial but distant for decades, until her death.

After Hal unveils his true self, he embraces his new identity with a new vitality and takes on a younger lover, Andy (Goran Visnjic from Welcome to Sarajevo).

The upheaval introduced by Hal’s new identity – both tumultuously funny (complete with rainbow scarf) and moving – brings father and son closer than they have ever been.

Oliver is hit with yet another shock when Hal tells him he has terminal cancer. In the intervening time to Hal’s passing, Oliver and Hal develop their relationship even further as Oliver tends to his dying father, thus developing Oliver’s emotional maturity further.

After Hal’s passing Oliver meets Anna (Melanie Laurent from Inglorious Basterds), a damaged French actress, and hopes that the lessons of love gleaned from Hal will show him how to act in a loving relationship.

One of pearls in this witty flick revolves around the relationship between the young Oliver (Keegan Boos) and his mother. Another is an endearing Jack Russell Terrier, Arthur (Cosmo), who boasts a vocabulary of 150 words. Yeah I have a soft spot in my heart (or head depending on which member of my family you talk to) for the diminutive but determined beasts.

Beginners will be shown at the Gem Theatre Tuesday, Dec. 6 at 7:30 pm.

submitted by Larry Hudema, Spolight Films