Wednesday, February 17, 2010

500 Days of Summer

I wanted to see 500 Days of Summer after seeing it in the previews on a handful of other movies I've rented recently. I picked it up from  the bargain bin of my local Hollywood Video that is closing, and I'm glad to add it to my collection.

Anything with Zooey Deschanel in it is automatically on my "must watch" list.   I don't think I've seen anything with Joseph Gordon-Levitt in it since 10 Things I Hate About You.  Quick IMDB search shows that he was the main voice in Treasure Planet.  (Note to self: watch that again...)

I watched this at the gym on the treadmill to try to trick my brain to keep running until the movie was over, hoping to get in 6 to 8 miles for my long run this past weekend.  My brain successfully fooled, I got in 7.5 miles while this was running.  I know I was smiling through most of the film.  The others in the gym must have thought I was nuts.

This movie is best summed up by the narrator:
"This is a story of boy meets girl. The boy, Tom Hansen of Margate, New Jersey, grew up believing that he'd never truly be happy until the day he met the one. This belief stemmed from early exposure to sad British pop music and a total mis-reading of the movie 'The Graduate'. The girl, Summer Finn of Shinnecock, Michigan, did not share this belief. Since the disintegration of her parent's marriage she'd only love two things. The first was her long dark hair. The second was how easily she could cut it off and not feel a thing. .... This is a story of boy meets girl, but you should know upfront, this is not a love story."
Usually when the narrator says that, I don't really believe them.  Somehow everything turns out lovely and heart-melting in the end.  They're telling the truth on this one.  It's not a love story.  But I loved it.

The progression of the relationship is shown out of sequence, so it is hard to tell when the little signs of the relationship not working really begin.  It was really creative and a unique spin on this type of film.  I kind of wish I could see an chronological version, if only to try to see if I could tell an individual moment when it stopped working. 

I enjoyed the soundtrack, though I am not very versed in British Invasion lore.  Oddly enough, the Smiths "There is a Light That Never Goes Out" from the preview came on while writing this post. There's a random dance break that I think is related to the British pop influence, but don't know for sure.  That was my laugh out loud moment.  Zooey Deschanel sings again in this movie.  I usually don't like sopranos, but I really like her voice.  Something about it is not quite professional, still a little scratchy.  I can't quite put my finger on it, but again, can't get enough of it.

This is definitely going to become a favorite in my arsenal of random movies to watch while cooking. I will steal one of the parting lines of the narrator, one that feels like a lot of the days lived recently.   "Most days of the year are unremarkable. They begin and they end with no lasting memory made in between. Most days have no impact on the course of a life."

You may now continue with your daily grind.


Melissa said...

I've been wanting to see this movie, should move it up on the list of things to watch soon.

Did you know Zooey is in a band? She & Him, they're playing at SxSw on Thursday March 18th, at 10pm.

It's kinda folksy poppy sounding music.

Ann said...

Don't think I'll be able to make it to SxSw, but so far I like the stuff by She & Him. It's neat that she writes all the songs.