Love, Simon | Page 26 | The Popjustice Forum

Love, Simon

Discussion in 'TV + Film' started by MB, Feb 20, 2018.

  1. Couldn't agree more! And that's why I feel Love, Simon is so important. It's accessible in a way that many gay-themed films aren't---not just for queer youth, but for their families too. Critics like Time magazine's David D'addario, who sneered at the film for being old fashioned and unneeded by today's teens, ought to step outside of liberal New York City for a moment---or read the countless accounts on social media from people positively affected by it. If this film had been around when I was 17 (a time when male homosexuality was---unbelievably---still illegal in my country, New Zealand), it would have made my own coming out easier---and I think it would have helped my parents to understand what I was going through as well. So while Love, Simon has been endlessly and pointlessly denigrated for being artistically inferior to Call Me By Your Name, in terms of actually making a difference to people's lives, it's the more important movie.

    And speaking of comparisons with Call Me By Your Name, this reviewer in the UK edition of GQ makes a bloody good point:

    Simon’s facial expressions most affected me. With a few well-placed glances - a furtive look at the buff next door neighbour on the way to school, a pained expression at his dad’s ill-judged sex jokes, a brow sorrowfully furrowed at the burden of his secret – Robinson adeptly manages to capture the anxiety of being a gay teenager with even more dexterity, dare I say it, than Timothée Chalamet in 2017’s Call Me By Your Name. ​

    The rest of the review is well worth a read too.
    mcuk, Sam, GimmeWork and 9 others like this.
  2. Hmm, it's been a while since I watched Call Me By Your Name, but I didn't really interpret any anxiety about being a gay teenager from Elio. He seems pretty comfortable with it.
  3. He


    Exactly. Elio is quite comfortable and knows how to navigate his surroundings, all the discomfort comes from being attracted and in love with someone he didn’t expect. Also Simon and Elio’s contexts are vastly different.

    Truly an empty comparison.

    Love Simon is quite a nice film, and necessarily wholesome.
  4. I wouldn't say it was a completely empty comparison. Both films feature straight actors playing 17-year-olds who are dealing with their sexuality. The reviewer was simply making the point that of the two performances, Nick Robinson's was the more relatable to him---as a gay man---in terms of conveying the inner anxiety that gay teenagers typically feel. (And it was for me too.) I thought it was a brave comment, since he was potentially inviting a load of ridicule for daring to compare a performance in a Hollywood high school dramedy with one from a critically worshipped arthouse film.

    I feel that Elio does go through some anxiety about his (bi?)sexuality, even if that's not the main focus of the story. He's clearly worried about his parents' reactions, at least, if his relationship with Oliver is discovered---and, like Simon, he's obviously relieved when his father reacts so positively (in that brilliant speech).

    By the way, it's curious that Love, Simon has often been criticized for its upper-middle class white protagonist and his liberal parents (and many viewers seem to have misunderstood Simon's opening "I'm just like you" voiceover, which is not meant to be an assumption that everyone else is white and comfortably off as well!), yet almost no one knocks Call Me By Your Name for also featuring a privileged, progressive family. I mean, how many gay kids in the 1980s would have had a father as openminded as Elio's?! (Not that I'm complaining---I love that character.)
    Remorque likes this.
  5. This film is so good! And yes, I think it's more reletable than Call Me By Your Name, which is overall a better movie and it took me a week to recover from that ending but it's kind of ~constructed~. Love, Simon is way more realistic.
    tastic and Damon Vincenti like this.
  6. Both films are so different in tone and concept that comparisons like this without further context feel unnecessary. The fact that some critics felt the need to compare them just goes to show that we need more queer stories in the mainstream.
  7. You may have come across this by now, but just in case you haven't: Here's a clean version of Julia Michael's haunting demo of Sink In. Some clever person has removed all the speaking from the Simon-Leah bedroom scene when this song plays.

    Remorque and LoveSoSoft like this.
  8. Although my British upbringing was a far cry from the glossy world of Shady Creek, I would go as far as to say that Love, Simon is the most realistic and moving portrayal of what it's like to be a gay teen of any TV series or film I've seen and, as mentioned in that review, I think a lot of that is down to Nick Robinson. All the lingering looks and anguished expressions. Eagerly checking his phone for emails from Blu. The scene where he's looking at him in the classroom absolutely killed me. The whole thing was just so poignant and beautifully done.
    Push, Remorque, GimmeWork and 6 others like this.
  9. Love this post.

    I think Nick Robinson does an amazing job of making us care about his character (who, let’s face it, could easily have been bland in the hands of many other actors). His might be not the kind of showy acting that gets critical accolades, but it’s a beautifully nuanced performance that always feels real to me.

    It’s the subtle things he does that lift it way out of the ordinary. For example, the way he reacts to Lyle asking him about Abby. It’s like the stuffing has just been knocked out of him in that moment---that quietly devastating realization that Lyle isn’t into him at all. (Boy, that brought back painful memories from my own teens!) Or the scene with Nora when he snaps at her for suggesting that he could deny being gay---that instant of regret that flickers over his face. Brilliant stuff!
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2019

  10. Think he just filmed a video for this and it's so good.
  11. mcuk likes this.
  12. MB


    superglowy likes this.
  13. I’d imagine it would start over, I doubt they’d get the cast back....although are any of them really doing much?

    A cute LGBT Rom com style tv series though? Tentatively perched’t.
  14. He


    Wouldn’t have expected Disney to go as quickly for those pink subscribers.
    Conan likes this.
  15. Jennifer Garner has to return as the mom or they can keep it.
    Laurence, Lander, He and 2 others like this.
  16. Sam


    The film literally just came out two years ago, and they’re rebooting it already? No thanks.
  17. Personally, I think the original film would have worked better as a Netflix series.
    Sick Sad World and He like this.
  18. I’d rather a Leah sequel to the film.
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