BEGINNERS

I would say I “liked” this movie but I never stopped thinking “I am watching a movie” and I was paying attention to the wrong details. Starting when Ewan MacGregor and his frenchy fun date drive over the curb in front of the apartment I used to live in when I lived in LA. Then his character, based on the director Mike Mills, designs the fake artwork for a real band, though played by fake people, that is an actual band that I tour managed a horrible European tour of when they toured on a record Mike Mills had designed. Then there is the issue of Ewan MacGregors American accent. I kept thinking “Is this overdubbed?” and trying to catch it out of synch with his mouth. And then I spent the rest of the time wondering if Mike Mills and Miranda July had an oh shit moment when they realized that both their films would have “talking” pets as the films spiritual center? You don’t want to think it but, similar themes between this and her cat/frozen moon movie. People frozen by their fear of loving, of duplicating typical marriage–as if there is something beyond the pale about a long-lasting “traditional” marriage. If I was to pick, I like the Mike Mills take here better because 1. Christopher Plummer is such a gent and B. Mike Mills preciousness is slightly less precious, or perhaps it’s a preciousness we are taught to not be so embarrassed by, to embrace, because it’s the preciousness of the adult man child. And not the unhinged woman who wants stranger sex with a man who has money. Both very common stories. In life and in film. C. I was also repelled and jealous of the clean, swedish wood furnished homes in the Mike Mills movie. I was also repelled. It’s the same thing as looking at The Selby, maybe? Horror-disgust. Decorative Antler Syndrome.

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