Based on a novel published in 2015, Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda, this movie breaks a lot of barriers. It tells the story of Simon, a typical 17-year-old kid, with a loving family, great friends and a life seemingly normal. Except he’s got a “huge-ass” secret: he is gay.
One day, Simon’s friend Leah informs him of an anonymous confession of another student. “Blue” posted a message saying his life was pretty normal, except for the fact that he was gay and closeted.
Following this, Simon creates his own alias, Jacques, and starts exchanging emails with Blue. They form an intimate virtual relationship, where they can freely talk about their sexual orientations and how hard it is to deal with such a secret.
Many things will stand in Simon/Jacques and Blue’s way, things that will make Simon do crazy things and upset his closest friends. But, in the end, what matters is that everyone deserves a great love story.
What was truly enjoyable about Love, Simon is the fact we can all relate to his struggles and choices. Personally, I thought the whole reflexion on coming out as gay, whilst you never really have to come out as straight, was great! It is true that we are all assuming other people’s sexual orientation whilst, truly, it is none of our business. It is also strange that we seem to see other people as straight, by definition…
I enjoyed the parents’ reactions: Simon’s mum, played by Jennifer Garner, tells him that his sexual orientation doesn’t change who he is and that, after years of holding his breath and keeping this secret, he can finally exhale and go back to being himself. His dad, Josh Duhamel, reflects on his assumption that his son was straight and how he has probably made a few jokes that might have been hurtful. So, I thought it was a good depiction of how one’s parents could react to a coming out.
The film ends on a high and leaves you with a lot of questions and reflexions in mind. I think the biggest hope that comes with Love, Simon is that younger people will feel more comfortable with their sexual orientations, that more parents will leave room for dialogue and that the general public will give less importance to things that don’t matter that much in the end.
Previously published on www.film-news.co.uk on the 29th of March 2018.