“Love, Simon:” A Teenage Love Letter to Coming Out

Written by | Entertainment, Screen

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Is Love, Simon the Next Call Me By Your Name?

Directed by Greg Berlanti (The Broken Hearts Club, Brothers & Sisters) and adapted from Becky Albertalli’s novel Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda, Love, Simon is the story of a closeted suburban teen named Simon (Nick Robinson – Jurassic World), who narrates his own thorny journey towards coming out to his family, friends, and the rest of the world.

The community he lives in appears immaculate, prosperous and is nearly devoid of a gay presence — save for the high school’s token gay student (who is by far more femme than Simon aspires to be). Simon’s lifeline during his identity crisis is another closeted gay boy from his school whom he discovers via a confessional Craigslist-esque website.  Their anonymous correspondences quickly turn into something more than simply shared experience.

Luckily for Simon, the rest of his circumstances are pretty ideal.  His parents (played by Jennifer Garner and Josh Duhamel) are liberal-minded, fantastically warm and supportive people.  His close-knit, mutli-ethnic posse of friends (including Katherine Langford of 13 Reasons Why and Alexandra Shipp of X-men: Apocalypse) are distinctly mature, loyal and kind.

It turns out, the main thing in Simon’s way — in coming to terms with who he is and who he wants to be —is himself. And though it sounds dramatically threadbare, the absence of any external threat highlights how difficult and painful everyone’s process of coming out is, even when it seems like it should be easy because of their circumstances.

The Word

Despite its oh-so-shiny veneer and pithy teen chatter worthy of a series on The CW, Love, Simon displays some pretty genuine meditations on its subject, and the appeal of its leads (especially Robinson in the title role) comes through in charming ways.

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Last modified: March 28, 2019