“(500) Days of Summer” Painfully True

Genres: Comedy and Romance
Running Time: 1 hr. 35 min.
Release Date: July 17th, 2009 (limited)
MPAA Rating: PG-13 for sexual material and language.
Distributors: Fox Searchlight Pictures

Directed by: Marc Webb

JJ Rating: A+

Tom (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) falls for Summer (Zooey Deschanel) in the cliché way of love at first sight. But this story, as the Narrator at the beginning of the movie stresses, is NOT a love story. It is not a Taylor Swift song. It tells how the relationship started, progressed and how it ended. (500) Days of Summer.

I saw the trailers and I was interested in this movie. It never really totally dawned on me how much I would relate to it until I started hearing more and more about the film, and then it hit me like a feather. But when I sat in the theater and I watched the film and each scene reminded me of what I had gone through it hit me harder…like a ton of feathers. Every time Tom would say something or show his feelings about a matter I swear I heard me. It was really creepy. And Summer got on my nerves steadily and readily from the moment she suggest there’s no love to the very end when she emotionally violates Tom.

Gordon-Levitt and Deschanel did painfully good job. I really like Deschanel. I think she’s a great actress but she reminded me so much of someone who shared similar relationship philosophy that it was so easy to totally dislike her. Levitt had an array of emotions that just cascaded in the film; whether he was in silence or he was being verbal he made it seem as if he was showing his infatuation, love, happiness and pain from his very soul.

One thing I believe many people can relate to is having a relationship that you were so invested in that when it fails the difficult part is trusting yourself again. You trusted yourself with knowing that someone was safe and you end up being wrong and it’s harder to forgive yourself than other people. And the question arises: Why would next time be any different?

Aside from the very dramatic and overly painful moments that reminded me of my past there were funny moments. (500) Days of Summer is not a straight telling of events. It does bounce from one part of the story to another part and that gives some amusing moments with a huge contrast in happy and in love vs. upset and out of love. There is also a lot of use of blue which is really apparent in one of the Tom is so happy moments he’s practically singing and dancing with a blue bird on his shoulder. The people who join him in this Disney-esque setting are all wearing different shades of blue. According to IMDB’s Trivia section on (500) Days of Summer they use of blue in the film was to bring out Deschanel’s eyes. That did work because her eyes were vibrant and I noticed the over use of blue. Actually I noticed it only in that one part and only after I read that bit about the blue did I realize that the poster is shrouded in shades of blue.

It was a fantastic idea the way the story was told. Had it been told in a sequence that is considered normal it would have almost been too much of the same to be as entertaining. The bouncing from day 3 to like day 145 made it interesting since it was known that the story was headed to being a disaster for Tom and that beating romantic heart he held in fantasy. Speaking of the numbers I do not know what significance this really has but the 8’s and 3’s were upside down when the day number is mentioned. The 5’s and 2’s look really odd like they were backwards and flipped and seem to be similar but I’m not as sure as I am with the 8’s and 3’s. I noticed that because when I look at gas station number’s they do have flipped 8’s and 3’s a lot of the time and it bugs me. I want to go and change it for them to make it all better for me.

(500) Days of Summer is on my top ten list for this year. It encapsulated so much emotion and it vented it in so many different ways that just looking at screenshots riddles my heart with so much pent up pain. And maybe this movie was good therapy for my latent emotional scares to allow them to exist again so I can finally get over them. The single gesture that Summer does at the end of the movie that is very simple hurt to see and I would bet it would hurt to feel. This movie is good and one of the few times I really wish I could say thank you to the creators because it is so painfully true. Then to those that think movies are so far from reality I would say, “Your cynical hearts are so wrong this go-around.” Because this go-around it seems like I was watching a biography instead of a fiction.

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