While watching Beginners I saw many different elements in relationships with different characters. Oliver and his father, Oliver’s Parents, Oliver and his mother, Oliver and Anna and the dog. Oliver’s father preoccupies most of his memory. Although his father has passed Oliver, looks back on many different occasions that he has with his father. It seems like Oliver has accepted his father no matter what. Oliver’s father tells Oliver that he is gay and brings around his boyfriend. One image that sticks out in my mind is when Oliver is at the hospital with his father and Andy walks in. Andy kisses his father and Oliver is just staring. I think Oliver is realizing that his father is truly happy, finally able to be himself. Oliver’s mother and him seemed to have an interesting relationship as well. Specifically when she tells Oliver that he can go into his room and scream as loudly as he can and it will make him feel better, and the scene where she looks into his room and pretends to shoot him, saying bang your dead or something along those lines. Oliver and his mother seem to have a playful bond together. It was also interesting that the idea of you point ill drive followed Oliver into his relationship with Anna. It was almost like he saw some of his mothers qualities in Anna.
Anna and Oliver is the relationship that rather boggles my mind a little bit. The two of them meet at a party and Anna is not speaking. She calls Oliver and without talking Oliver manages to meet up with her. It seemed kind of weird that no matter what Anna was “saying” without verbally speaking, Oliver knew exactly what she was talking about, or appeared to know anyways. I thought for the longest time that she was unable to speak. I thought it was interesting through the role playing exercise when Anna and Oliver are on the phone and Anna is her dad and Oliver is Anna, Anna felt comfortable to open up about personal things affecting her life. Another interesting element was the dog. He had his own thoughts and feelings throughout the whole movie. It was also an interesting dynamic that Oliver seemed to understand the dogs thoughts, even though no actual talking was heard. The audience was given subtitles as a way into the mind of the dog, which he seemed to have an opinion about many things.
Oliver was a very melancholic character, which I think is because he is mourning. He rarely showed any emotion. When thinking of anything, even Anna. When thinking about his parents he started to write the “History of Sadness” which I thought was weird. Another interesting parallel was that his mother found out she was Jewish at the age of 13 and his father realized he was gay at the age of 13. For both of Oliver’s parents the age of 13 was an unforgettable time. Each one had their own negative experiences with their characteristics. His father for example had to hide the fact that he was gay because Homosexuality was considered a mental illness, and his mother was kicked off the swim team for being Jewish. It seemed like throughout the whole film Oliver has these flash backs to remember the times he had with both of his parents who were now dead, I think Anna was someone who could help fill a void inside of him.