Tuesday, 1 February 2011

(500) Days of Summer DVD Film Review

I was never really sure of this movie but heard good things about it and love both the leads, so thought I'd watch it for their acting at the very least, though in the end actually quite enjoyed it!

The cover features Joseph Gordon Levitt wearing a T-shirt with scenes from the movie~ compared to the US version posters and DVD cover, this is definitely not as enticing nor as representative of the plot.

Tom Hansen (Joseph Gordon Levitt) believes in true love. Summer Finn (Zooey Deschanel) does not. When Tom meets Summer, it is love at first sight and he feels she is "the one". But Summer is not looking for anything serious. So what happens when they "fall in love"?

500 days of summer tells of the chapter of time in which Summer is in Tom's life. Their supposed romance and heartbreak is revealed through segmented time fragments, jumping from day 1 to day 119 and back again, in a way which takes us on a roller coaster ride through the highs and lows of the couple's relationship.

The first thing to note is the themes this film explores such as fate and true love, expressed through the two characters' opposing viewpoints. This is directed in such an artistic way with the beginning exploring the individuals' upbringing and values using split screen. The clever jumping time frames also add so much to this movie eg. when Tom describes the things he loves about Summer when he's infatuated then when he's heartbroken, describes the exact same things he loved only this time hating them- one of my favourite bits.

Another one of my favourite scenes was their make believe playing in the IKEA store. It was so original and romantic and funny- it probably has been done before but I ain't seen it yet and this is surely to be memorable to me. "There's a Chinese family in out bathroom" LOL.

Another use of camerawork I was really impressed with was the part when Tom meets up with Summer again and they show his expectations and reality and how they vary. The subtlety was sublime and it was never too much to take in- this was perhaps the best bit artistically, and could be a short film in its own right. 

This film isn't without its flaws. I found Tom's friends ridiculously annoying and cringe-worthy. Had they been cut from the movie, this would be totally awesome. It also didn't need the profanities and excessive sexual references. Zooey Deschanel and Joseph Gordon Levitt shouting "penis" was enough! My mum was not impressed. XD

So what happens after 500 days? Through their relationship together, Zooey and Tom both discover and learn something new about love. I loved the ending in that it wasn't a typical ending yet somehow it was (I don't want to give it away, you'll understand when you watch it). It just worked for artistic value and leaves the messages of the film wide open to interpretation. Maybe you were distracted by someone you thought was "the one", only to find "the one" right in front of you but you never saw them? Deep right!

Joseph Gordon Levitt- Tom Hansen
Zooey Deschanel- Summer Finn

Joseph Gordon Levitt and Zooey Deschanel both do a fantastic job. I love that Levitt is the lovelorn one and he fits right into it- definitely an upcoming actor to watch. The character of Zooey Deschanel (I LOVE HER VOICE) was a bit annoying as she wasn't very forthcoming with what she wanted but you can't help but like her.

This DVD contains deleted scenes.

"This is not a love story. This is a story about love" stands true. I love the themes this movie explores and the way they leave things at the end to answer the questions they ask. I love the camerawork and direction making the movie progress in an artistic way. The cast are great. But after you watch this movie, you feel something missing. It appears all the elements are here, but it doesn't fulfil you. I can't figure out what it is yet. Can you?

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