New Stories About Gay Aging: Mike Mills’s Beginners (2010)



This chapter examines Mike Mills’s Beginners (2010) as a pivotal film that offers a positively connoted and complex narrative focused on an aging gay protagonist. Hess reads the film as representative of multifaceted processes of re-examining and re-claiming LGBTQ history taking place in the early 2000s. The author argues that the film self-reflectively juxtaposes its story of a gay man’s coming out at age 75 in the early twenty-first century with the impossibility of imagining or telling such a story throughout most of the twentieth century. The film exposes the policing mechanisms inherent in heteronormative discourses via its meta-level commentary on memory and on constructing live stories. Moreover, it uses its own portrayal of gay aging to demand new and different narratives of queer aging.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Goethe University FrankfurtFrankfurt am MainGermany

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