24. (500) Days of Summer
I remember the first time I saw (500) Days of Summer it touched my heart in places that needed it the most. Almost a year after my bad break-up, this was the film I needed to calm any feelings of rejection or hurt I may have still been feeling.
500 Days of Summer tell the story of Tom Hansen, a wanna be archetict turned greeting cards writer. One day he meets the new secretary Summer and immediately falls in love. The two bond over their music tastes and begin hanging out frequently outside of work.
From the beginning of their ‘relationship’ Summer is very upfront with Tom about her desire to not be in a relationship. Regardless Tom falls in love.
What makes (500) Days of Summer such an interesting film is that it jumps around in the relationship. The titular 500 days are from the day they met to the day Tom is ready to move on with his life. The film will show you day 75 where they are both happy and then immediately jump to day 305 with Tom miserable and Summer no longer working at the office.
There are many moments that are up for debate on if they’re real or Tom’s imagination. Not since Forgetting Sarah Marshall & Annie Hall has a break-up been depicted so honestly. All of the emotions are there. The confidence you’ll get back together, the loneliness, the point where you go mute, the point where you never shut up about it. It’s all there.
The film is also interesting in that it’s written in a way where you don’t completely hate Summer. The writers of the film Scott Neustadter and Michael H Weber both discuss how divided men and women are about the relationship. Men see Summer as a bitch who used Tom while women see Tom as someone who ignored the fact that Summer repeatedly stated she didn’t want to be in a relationship.
It’s easily one of the most interesting deconstructions of a break-up ever to grace the silver screen.