(500) Days of Summer (2009)

02 September 2009

synopsis
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Boy meets girl, Boy falls in love. Girl Doesn’t.

This post modern love story is never what we expect it to be – it’s thorny yet exhilarating, funny and sad, a twisted journey of highs and lows that doesn’t quite go where we think it will. When Tom, A hapless greeting card copywriter and hopeless romantic is blindsided after his girlfriend Summer dumps him, he shifts back and forth through various periods of their 500 days “together” to try to figure out where things went wrong. His reflections ultimately lead him to finally rediscover his true passions in life.

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our review
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"This is it! The movie I’ve been waiting for!"

Oh My God! This is it! The movie I’ve been waiting for! The reason I’ve criticised every rom com, complaining of the sameness, the predictability, the unreality of it all. Finally I can relax. They clearly listened to me. This film is as perfect as an American romantic comedy will ever get. 

Through flashbacks and postcards we watch as Summer flirts with Tom, Tom falls in love with Summer and Summer…can’t. Or won’t. Argh, it makes me ache just writing about it. Why can’t things be easy? Why can’t we all just say what we mean and feel what the other person wants us to? When did we invent labels, commitment, ideals? 

The voice over and the back and forth flashbacks could’ve made this too complicated, a good idea that didn’t quite deliver. But actually, it works. I spent the whole film shouting (fortunately for everyone else the shouting was in my head) yes! Exactly! Just tell him you love him! But she doesn’t, and actually, it’s ok.  

Don’t let this put you off but I happen to know that a couple of Americans went to see this film as boyfriend and girlfriend and came out deciding to go their separate ways. That’s how powerfully real this film is. Wow.

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DVD cover
  • Release Date
  • 18 January 2010
  • Technical Features / Extras
  • Main Feature + digital copy and the following special features:
  • Lost Days of Summer: Deleted and Extended Scenes
  • Love Testimonials
  • 'I Think We Should Stop Seeing Each Other'
  • Famiy Dinner (Day 11)
  • Tom In The Movie Theatre (Day 286)
  • Tom Sees Summer Everywhere (Day 306)
  • Date With Allison (Day 345)
DVD Review
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"it is a very unique and well-told story with a great pair of leading stars"

Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Zooey Deschanel star in this offbeat romantic comedy, the feature film debut from music video director Marc Webb, which chronicles 500 days in the on/off relationship of Summer (Deschanel) and Tom (Gordon-Levitt). While Summer steadfastly refuses to believe in true love, asserting that real life will always get in the way in the end, Tom has thrown caution to the wind and fallen hook, line and sinker in love with her. Where can their so-called relationship lead?
 
These are just a few examples of how this film stands apart from others in the genre, but for as clever as they sound, none of them would work without someone like Joseph Gordon-Levitt at the helm. Undoubtedly he is one of the best talents of his generation, Gordon-Levitt doesn't seem capable of doing wrong and this is exactly the kind of role he's been building a career around for the past five years.
 
If you are a fan of great romantic comedies and are tired of the same old stories being presented with different titles on the cover then this is a perfect fit for your Friday night date.  It is a very unique and well-told story with a great pair of leading stars.
 
The deleted scenes are just down to alternate or extended takes of scenes already in the film but the Blu-ray edition comes with a heap of extras, including a commentary track with Director Marc Webb, Writer Michael Weber, Writer Scott Neustadter, and Actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt. They are all equally as passionate about the film, and their discussions around the film and its themes highlight this fact.