For the longest time now I’ve been made to believe by certain friends that you need to be part of a pair to succeed and survive. I love this film because it proved to me that you don’t. There is no need to settle for second best, for what doesn’t feel right, simply to feel something. There is nothing wrong with being exactly like Summer, which is precisely how I want to live my life. Because, just like Summer, one day I’ll wake up and just know.
The other night my friend and I watched 500 days of Summer. If you haven’t yet seen this film, stop reading right now and get yourself to a Blockbuster (shameless work plug right there), because it’s the best thing I’ve seen since Cashback. (Incidentally, if you haven’t seen Cashback either, you should get onto that too.)
Without spoiling anything, I loved every aspect of this film: the blunt reality of the storyline; the gorgeous stencil art and beautiful cinematography; the supporting cast of Tom’s best mates and uber-wise kid sister; the sweet optimism and desperate longing of Tom himself; the killer soundtrack (The Temper Trap, one of my favourite musical obsessions, featured not once but twice); and most of all, Summer Finn herself.
I love Summer because I understand her. One of this films best traits is it’s relatability – we’ve all felt the giddy obsession and crushing heartbreak that Tom experiences. We’ve all clouded our judgement with expectations, knowing that the inevitable reality could never match up.
But back to Summer. She’s a quirky commitment-phobe who has no clue what she wants in life, let alone in someone else, but isn’t particularly bothered by that. She’s smart and sassy and most of all, incredibly intriguing. Not to mention she has the most lush wardrobe commercial film has seen in many, many years.
I love how unapologetic Summer is. She makes it clear to Tom from the start what her position is on love and relationships, and throughout their love affair, she’s confusing but her standpoints don’t waver. She’s intoxicating and random and passionate and vivacious.
The love affair between Summer and Tom is exactly how love is meant to be. Dangerous, exciting, painful, confusing, exhilarating, passionate and never, ever mediocre. Summer tells the boys early on that she’s “not comfortable being anyone’s anything”, let alone being someone’s girlfriend. She’s a free spirit whose happiness is dependant on no-one. She’s flighty and slightly bipolar and her mood shifts are often unexplained and unexpected. She has walls, and even when it seems like they’re starting to come down, she still doesn’t belong to anyone by herself.