Whether Love, Simon is the ultimate ‘coming out’ gay movie that Hollywood has been clamouring for is open to some conjecture – but it at least works as a heartfelt melodrama.
The main characters – although likeable – probably aren’t strong or gritty enough to make this comedy/romance/drama as clever or eye-opening as it thinks it is, but there’s undoubtedly enough amiability here to still make it the gender-defining equivalent of The Fault in Our Stars (as this was produced by the same team).
Jurassic World’s Nick Robinson stars as Simon Spiers, a teenager in his last year of high school who has kept a huge secret – which he has known since his Daniel ‘Harry Potter’ Radcliffe fantasies from a young age – from his family, friends and classmates: that he’s gay.
And when another fellow pupil goes anonymously online on the school forum to say he’s of the same inclination – but he’s yet to ‘come out’ – Simon becomes fascinated with his story and they spark up a friendship under false aliases.
But when he accidentally leaves his email details open on a school computer this sparks off a chain of events – with particular consequences for his close friends – that will soon lead to Simon disclosing his revelation – with his parents Emily (Jennifer Garner) and Jack (Josh Duhamel) also in the dark – and will make him come to terms with his identity.
And through a few decent twists and turns this is nicely pieced together to becoming a watchable – and intermittently moving – genre movie.
It sadly doesn’t really take any real risks – and whether Robinson shows enough acting range to get the most out of the lead part is questionable – but there’s a pleasantly charming undertone that allows this modern teenage love story to still make its mark.
Cast: Nick Robinson, Jennifer Garner, Josh Duhamel, Katherine Langford, Alexandra Shipp, Logan Miller, Jorge Lendeborg Jr & Keiynan Lonsdale
Running Time: 1 Hr 50 Mins
Director: Greg Berlanti
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