Love, Simon

I wondered whether we needed a ‘coming out’ movie in 2018, but Love, Simon surprised me. It surprised me most of all by being good, but also by making a case for its existence. Simon is a high school student with a secret. He’s gay. And it’s not that he’s particularly afraid of how his family or friends will react to the news, which is nice, and sadly not everyone’s experience. But Simon’s still holding back just because he feels that life will change for him once he’s out, and he’s not feeling ready to rock the boat.

The thing is, no matter how gently the boat would actually rock, it still should be Simon’s choice when and how to come out – and that should remain true until the proverbial ‘coming out’ is no longer necessary (ie, when hetero is no longer the ‘default’). But in the MV5BZjdmNjI4NjctNWEwNi00M2EwLTg4MzItMWFmMTU0MDJiMzA0XkEyXkFqcGdeQXVyNTE0MDE1MjQ@._V1_film, Simon (Nick Robinson) has that stolen from him. Another kid, Martin (Logan Miller), learns his secret and exploits it, uses it to blackmail him for his own ends. Which, okay, further illustrates that everyone in high school is desperate and scared and going through something. But saving yourself should never  be at somebody else’s expense. Unfortunately, that’s a lesson both Martin AND Simon will have to learn, because to protect his secret, Simon makes some bad choices that will hurt the very friends who will love and support him if and when he does choose to be out.

It’s a pretty solid cast and a pretty solid story and a good reminder that just because being gay is a little more…mainstream? tolerated? understood? – it can still feel like a thing that sets you apart. And while being gay is not a choice, we should all be allowed to choose our own path. Sexuality doesn’t really set us apart but secrets do. And living your truth is the only way out.

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11 thoughts on “Love, Simon

  1. Caz

    Good review! I really enjoyed watching this film at the cinema last night, such a nice film which will hopefully help so many teenagers confused about who they really are.

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  2. CineMuseFilms

    I was dissapointed with this film. For me, Love, Simon, stands out for its Glee-style, middle-America, sugar-coated representation of gayness and the bothersome disruption to Simon’s coming-out experience. If all such experiences were so gentle it would not be the trauma it is for many. On the other hand, my 21 year old daughter and 23 year old son loved it, so its a sucess.

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    1. Jay Post author

      While this doesn’t represent everyone’s experience, it is a valid experience, one that I hope is becoming more usual, and perhaps this will serve as a bit of a guide for families dealing with similar issues. This is what is possible. Times are changing. Many LGBT kids find loving and accepting parents, and we hope that happens more and more. But there’s still room for stories where that isn’t the case, and those are important to tell too.

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