The critic consensus on Rotten Tomatoes says, “Wearing its twee heart on its sleeve, Beginners explores the depths of modern, multi-generational romance with wit and depth.” Netflix said it guessed I would give it 4 and a quarter stars.
I say this was the most boring movie I’ve ever actually made it all the way through.
The first time I tried watching it I started falling asleep. When I picked it back up again in the middle, I kept asking myself why.
It was not only “twee,” it was infuriating.
Were we–the unwitting audience members–really supposed to buy that Ewan McGregor was all alone in life just because he was absurdly annoying to be around? Were we supposed to agree it was possible for the girl (someone I’ve never heard of, though that isn’t saying much), an impossibly beautiful one with a foreign accent, was all alone just because she was just as awful to be around? Because despite being equally obnoxious and dull, in real life they still would have found someone who wanted to be with them.
Then, after the part where they separate for about 5 minutes–but, because it was this movie, it felt like 5 hours–and they of course sort of get back together, were we supposed to go along with the notion that even though they both completely ruined the stupid relationship they had, they were somehow able to instantly put it back together just because they’re both idiots?
Maybe I’m only bitter because I wish this movie were like real life (minus the mind-numbing slow pace and empty hours of nothing happening). Of course I want to find the person who seems like he shouldn’t be single because he’s so great but he’s really just been holding out for me. And obviously I want to be able to screw things up with no consequence. And I even want the cute dog who cries when I’m out of sight even though in reality that would drive me crazy.
Or maybe it’s just that the movie tried to include some effects a la i heart huckabees but way less effective and fun, and I resent it for that because I love i heart huckabees.
I don’t know for sure. I do know that I rated it 1 star, not because it necessarily deserved it, but so maybe it would encourage Netflix to not suggest anything remotely like it again.
As I was watching Bob’s Burgers to get the bad taste of Beginners out of my mouth, I noticed Netflix had guessed I’d give the show 5 stars. Which I have to say is pretty presumptuous but still much closer to my actual opinion, so maybe it’s working.