Release Date: March 16, 2018
Run Time: 1 hour, 50 minutes
Genre: Drama/Romance (coming of age)
Love, Simon is the newest YA novel adaptation, from Becky Albertalli's Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda. You can check out my review of Simon vs. here!Everyone deserves a great love story. But for seventeen-year old Simon Spier it’s a little more complicated: he’s yet to tell his family or friends he’s gay and he doesn’t actually know the identity of the anonymous classmate he’s fallen for online. Resolving both issues proves hilarious, terrifying and life-changing. Directed by Greg Berlanti (Riverdale, The Flash, Supergirl), screenplay by Elizabeth Berger & Isaac Aptaker (This is Us), and based on Becky Albertalli’s acclaimed novel, LOVE, SIMON is a funny and heartfelt coming-of-age story about the thrilling ride of finding yourself and falling in love.
YA book to movie adaptations have been a trend for a long time, and let's just say that they haven't always hit the mark. With recent box office and critical flops like Allegiant, Beautiful Creatures, The Host, The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones, etc. I was excited and nervous to see how this YA adaptation would shape up. And though not all critics' reviews are in (they're generally favorable), and we don't know how much money they movie has made, I will say this: this amateur reviewer thought Love, Simon was a great movie, and I have high hopes for it's commercial success.
My complaints only exist because I have read the novel. I think if I didn't read the book prior, I wouldn't have felt like there needed to be more, but there were a couple things from the book that I wish they would have incorporated. Of course, the main focus is on Simon, but I would have loved to see the scene where Leah and Simon's sister play at the talent show (which was nonexistent). Also, in the books, Simon and Blue talk everyday, and sometimes multiple times. At the end of the movie, Simon has only around 10 messages in his email. This might be nit-picky, but did Simon just delete most of the emails or something? It's just a quick thing I noticed that took me out of the story. As with all adaptations, there are some things that fans of the book are going to miss, and this wasn't an exception. And even though there were some moments that I missed from the book, I still enjoyed the movie a lot!
Now, let's talk about the acting. Simon and his group of friends (Leah, Abby, and Nick) are acted very well. They are all breathe life into the characters I love from the book. But what I really love about the four of there performances is that they are so normal. Simon ad his friends are not overly characterized. Their portrayals of being a teenager are spot on, and I was able to easily insert myself into the story because of it. When Simon and his friends are all carpooling together and getting coffee, I immediately thought about my friends doing almost the same thing my senior year of high school. And that's what I think works the best about this movie: it is able to relate to the audience.
One of the other things I really liked about Love, Simon was Simon's parents, played by Jennifer Garner and Josh Duhamel. Watching the movie, I could tell that they were seasoned actors. Even though they don't have a lot of scenes in the movie, they made the most out of all of them. There is this amazing scene between Simon and his father, and those two minutes were so touching.
Another scene that really stood out was the confrontation between Simon and Martin near the end of the movie. If you have read the book, you know what I'm talking about. Nick Robinson and Logan Miller were spot on in that scene, and it is one of my favorite scenes of the film. It was great to see Simon stand up for himself, and the it resonated with the audience as well (they were all cheering!).
After Love, Simon and Lady Bird, coming of age movies seem to be getting another life, and this time it looks like movie studios are doing it right. Love, Simon is a well acted film and one for the books (pun intended). Love, Simon is the first gay teen romantic comedy from a major studio, and I'm so glad that it turned out so well.
Love, Simon is a great adaptation. It is not only faithful to the book, but stands on its own as a good movie as well. The movie was really heartwarming, and I'll be watching it again for a second time! Though I would have liked to see a couple more of the details that really made the book stand out for me, the movie is solid. It's great to see that a major production company like Fox put out a movie that will undoubtedly be important for the LGBTQ+ community.
With that, I give Love, Simon a B+.
Have you read Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda? Are you planning on seeing the movie?
Thanks so much for stopping by and I'll see you soon with another post!
Happy Reading (and watching Love, Simon)!
Genni @ Ready, Set, Read!