Not a love story, but a story about love

for my secret lover…

(500) Days of Summer

I would encourage anyone who has a crush on my character to watch it again and examine how selfish he is. He develops a mildly delusional obsession over a girl onto whom he projects all these fantasies. He thinks she’ll give his life meaning because he doesn’t care about much else going on in his life. A lot of boys and girls think their lives will have meaning if they find a partner who wants nothing else in life but them. That’s not healthy. That’s falling in love with the idea of a person, not the actual person.

— Joseph Gordon-Levitt (Tom Hansen)

I feel like this quote is a necessary introduction to my review of the movie, because as far as I’m concerned, people who dislike this movie have one common reason — They hate Summer Finn. And the movie, told in Tom’s POV, have been easily misleading the audience into thinking that Summer is a Capital B Biatch who seduced Tom into loving her and then ditched him for another guy without any apparent reason. They forgot that this is a story about love, and in such a story, no one is right or wrong, only what happens happens.

When I watched the movie for the first time, I was struck with how perfect it was. The TWT narrative was perfect, the graphic was perfect, the music was perfect. Every single thing that became this production was perfect for me. But as time pasts, the things I now have left in mind about this movie are all fragmented, insignificant, not at all perfect.

And that is the thing about love.

At the moment you first fall into it, it is perfect. It is the most beautiful thing that ever happened in your life. It makes you feel like life is worth living. But as you fall out of it, memories become distorted, broken.

A thing about (500) Days of Summer that I love so much is that it is so very honest, and for me, I value honesty in most works of art. It’s always the simplest, most honest part in a story that strikes you the hardest. With this movie, it’s like countless number of blows that knock you out senseless. At the end, you’re left with this little story that can be applied to anyone you know, including yourself. That is when you know the movie has made it. It has touched you.

That being said, despite being honest and simple, this movie still makes everything become so beautiful, even the pain, even the regrets. After watching it I felt a great sadness, knowing my life would never happen that way. Never in my life would I fall in love with someone when ‘There’s a Story that Never Ends’ playing in the background. That is the curse of me for dreaming in the stars.

So many times I have recommended this movie to people, and so many times before and after they watch it, they would ask me why I love this movie so much. It is certainly not the best movie I’ve ever seen, but it surely will be one of my most favorite movies forever. Because it is a story about love, and so many people for so many decades have tried to make others understand love as they do. I am one of them, and this movie is how I understand love. I just want you to understand it the way I do.


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