Friday, 22 July 2011

[488] Mike Mills Interview

I enjoy interviewing people. I think I do it quite well. This interview with Mike Mills was one of the easiest in recent memory. I did not particularly like his new film, Beginners, but the conversation flowed easily enough.

I didn't even have to bring out my back-up question about his music video for the Air song 'All I Need', which, as a 13 year old, completely blew my mind. Not only for the downbeat sun-kissed tune itself, but for how it breaks out of the conventions of music video-making, crossing over with elements of documentary. Watch it here.

And, oh, read the interview, while you're here.

Beginners, the new film from Mike Mills, has been promoted oddly. The posters currently adorning the country are bright, white affairs, complete with a grinning Ewan McGregor, a pouting Mélanie Laurent, and a dashing, neckerchief-clad Christopher Plummer. There’s also a cute dog, for good measure.

When coupled with the most basic of plot synopses - that 70-odd year old Hal (Plummer) comes out as gay to his son, Oliver (McGregor) - it looks like we’d be in for a pleasant, buoyant indie comedy.

However, the roots of Beginners go deeper. This is actually a very personal story, unapologetic in its tone, and marked by grief. Mills’ own father came out in his old age, and died only a few years later. The resulting film is born out of that emotion, and is influenced by the writer-director’s wide array of creative interests, from his music videos, to his work in graphic design. We recently had the chance to talk with Mills, ahead of the release of Beginners on Friday.

Read the full article here.

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