So i saw "(500) Days of Summer" last week and was incredibly impressed. It is by far my favorite film of the year. I could probably write a book on why I loved it so much, but I wouldn't want to bore you, so I will just limit it to 4 reasons...
1. The Romance - It's not often that I relate to the female character in a romantic comedy. Summer is a girl who is a quirkier (and much more awesome) version of myself - in that she likes to maintain a sense of mystery and is perfectly happy being alone. Summer is not actively searching for her soul-mate, she quite simply is a non-believer in that thing called love. Tom is more of an open book. He is the smart, good-looking, sensitive "catch" that girls like Summer would definitely find attractive. When they are together it is refreshingly real, yet magnificently magical. It's also rare that I feel like I am watching people my age. With most rom-coms I feel like I am watching people at least 10 years older than me (I mean, they are always successful Lawyers, Doctors, Executives etc. and they always have amazingly unaffordable apartments or even houses...all at 27 years old!!), yet Tom and Summer felt like struggling young adults that I would actually hang out with.
2. The Gimmicks - Most filmmakers rely on gimmicks to keep their films interesting when they lack a strong story. However, this film would be just as awesome without the non-linear story telling, the split screen, the mock interviews and that amazing musical dance sequence (!!). All of these things just add to the brilliance of the film. I love that the story is told completely out of order - it just made the contrast of the beginning of their relationship and the end of it stronger. There is that famous quote "We do not remember days...we remember moments" by Cesare Pavese that I was reminded of while watching this film because it really doesn't matter what day things happened, we only remember these little moments that made the whole day memorable. This film captures these little moments of a relationship that no other film has (that I can think of...). I also loved the use of a split screen to show the party scene, it simultaneously shows how Tom imagines it will be and also how it actually turns out. Oh and that scene where Tom is standing in the middle of the city and the city gets erased slowly and then turns into one of Tom's drawings - absolutely beautiful. I'm just in love with this film and I really can't wait for the DVD so that I can analyze every second of it.
3. Zoey and Joe - Although, I am convinced the reason Zoey plays these eccentric characters so well is because she is that eccentric girl in person. She is not actually a great actress (as you can see in The Happening). But, in this film she is perfectly casted - her wide-eyed sweetness keeps the audience from hating her. And JGL is obviously amazing, adding romantic lead to his already diverse acting career. The chemistry between them together is the real achievement though. Make sure you watch the music video that compliments the film. Although it really has nothing to do with the film, you can witness their chemistry without a single spoken word.
4. The point - So, it can't really be called a romantic comedy if the 2 main characters don't make it in the end right? This really isn't even a spoiler alert either, since the narrator in the beginning declares "This is not a love story". So what exactly is it? What was the point of us watching this relationship disintegrate? Everyone is going to form their own opinion on what lesson is to be learned- but here is mine. You are never going to find love if you don't love yourself. Tom put all of his energy into his relationship with Summer, not realizing that he still hadn't discovered who he was yet. The real reason Summer couldn't fall in love with him (as devastating as that is) is simply because Tom was looking for Summer to complete him, while Summer was looking for someone to compliment her as an already secure person. That's a great lesson for everyone to learn right?