Actress Zooey Deschanel (Yes Man) and actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt (3rd Rock From the Sun) in hand with screenwriters Scott Neustadter and Michael H. Weber make 500 Days of Summer a must own for ‘tough love’ fans.
Tom Hansen (Gordon-Levitt) is a rat in the pack at a big time card company, spending his office hours writing uninspired cards instead of pursuing his true career love, architecture. One day cute secretary temp Summer (Deschanel) joins the office, and Tom quickly takes notice. What ensues is a ball of joy with razor blades at the center, and the question becomes what would you do to stay in love?
One thing this film indefinitely has to boast about is the leading roles. Don’t go as far to nominate them for Oscars, but give these two sparkling new-comers a nod for drawing in the audience and keeping them close. Zooey Deschanel has every requirement for ‘universal cutie’ and she uses this advantage to hold up a scene where others couldn’t. She is also a fine actress in her own degree, though not in the honored character actor sort of way. Joseph Gordon-Levitt is also a particularly endearing individual. He’s the everyman’s hopeless romantic, a role he was either born into or truly learned to portray well here.
Another key ingredient to the success of this film is the screenwriters. The way that Neustadter and Weber lead you through this story is unique, as they start at day one of the five hundred in the relationship. What makes this script uncommon is that instead of jumping day to day in Tom and Summer’s time together, the film visits seemingly random days that are completely out of order. This creates a bit of a mystery side, as day twenty may show the two blossoming and happy, then cut to day four hundred when Tom is miserable.
Overall, 500 Days of Summer is not the romantic-comedy where two people fall in love and laugh together until they are married. In fact, take out the laughing and marriage all together. Take out the love while you’re at it too. What you are left with is a truly terrific tale of one person chasing another, while running after what he believes is love, only to find that maybe he’s been running in the wrong direction.
An instant favorite.
Sincere to film,
The Movie Dude