Filmmaker and graphic artist Mike Mills has created a thoughtful, joyous and tender film about love, romance, loss and life in all its messiness and beauty. Ewan McGregor (Trainspotting), in one of his best performances, stars as Oliver, a single thirtysomething still bearing the scars of past broken relationships, as he tries to make sense of his current emotions. The past and present of Olivers life is expertly and effortlessly woven through the narrative. Theres the present, when Oliver meets and falls in love with the beguiling and cheeky Anna (Melanie Laurent: Inglourious Basterds), only months after his father Hal (Christopher Plummer: The Sound of Music) has passed away. This new love floods Oliver with memories of his father, who, after the death of his wife of 45 years, came out of the closet to live a wonderfully full gay life. And this makes Oliver reflect on his bittersweet childhood of an absentee father and a mother who were no longer in love or in synch. As memories of the past mix with his learners-permit life in the present, Olivers relationships with both his late father and Anna deepen and reorder. Beginners is a rare cinematic achievement, firstly transforming what you expect from romance and comedy on screen while also being a generous, humanistic, profound and enchanting portrait of, well, what life is all about. When it comes to love, were all beginners.