(500) DAYS OF SUMMER


2009

DIRECTOR(s): Marc Webb

NOT A PART OF MY COLLECTION

Will we be adding this to our collection? Maybe

May Contain Spoilers!

“This is not a love story” was the opening quote from the narrator of this off beat indie rom-com, if that’s the best term for it. It charts the 500 day changing relationship between a man who believes in fate and true love, Joseph Gordon-Levitt and a woman who doesn’t believe in relationships at all, Zooey Deschanel.

He perceives their relationship very differently to her but in then end they both rub off on each other and ultimately become changed and maybe, better people as a result. But it is of course, all very subjective.

This was nice film, steering a far away from shmaltz as much as possible without being cold or too cynical. Its aim seems to be to show that couples invariably have differing views on the same relationship and each member taints their view of the other with their own expectations, a concept expertly demonstrated with a split screen sequence, showing the same scene twice.

One version was real and the other was his expectations and this was tragic and puts this idea of this self-delusion which we all share across with a sharp focus. This was clearly directed from a very personal perspective and it was very well done by Marc Webb, a man up until now, I had never heard of, but who’s next gig is The Amazing Spiderman. The cinematography was beautiful, with all the indie staples but not the overkill often lavished upon this kind of film and the cast delivered tempered performances.

The only real issues that I have with this film, is that it could have been more than it was. The time span of 500 days is told in a non-linear and sometimes confusing manner and I can live with that, but I was left wanting more details of the 500 days. Many of them were skipped, obviously, but the initial promise of the non-linear device didn’t live up itself as I had initially hoped, but that’s not o say that this scuppered the movie, because it certainly didn’t.

This was a clever, witty tale of love and loss, told in a very relatable way and not just to kids and whilst I laughed I was left with a bitter taste as this sums up the failings in almost every relationship, successful or otherwise.

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