Love, Simon explores friendship, bullying, anxiety, love, and sexuality, and is the teen LGBT rom-com we need [Review]

Love, Simon explores friendship, bullying, anxiety, love, and sexuality, and is the teen LGBT rom-com we need [Review]

Simon hasn’t told his family and friends, but his crush on an anonymous pen pal complicates the situation


Simon (centre) has a crush on a boy he has never seen in person before.
Photo: Twentieth Century Fox Film

Seventeen-year-old Simon (Nick Robinson) has a loving family and three best friends, Nick (Jorge Lendeborg Jr.), Leah (Katherine Langford), and the newcomer Abby (Alexandra Shipp), but he’s yet to tell them his long-kept secret: that he’s gay.

As you giggle at the dramatic actions and lines of the supporting characters, you’ll gradually come to understand the stress and pain of the closeted gay teenage protagonist, Simon.

One day, Simon reads an online confession written by another closeted gay student from his high school, who writes under the pseudonym Blue. He begins to talk to Blue by email and gradually falls in love with him.

LGBT teens, just be yourself; everyone else is already taken

While Simon tries to figure out the real identity of his pen pal, another student Martin (Logan Miller) discovers their conversation and threatens to out Simon to the entire school if he refuses to help him win over Abby.

Romantic comedies are always fun and easy to watch, but few of them are also as meaningful and thought-provoking. Love, Simon is one of those rare romcoms that have more to offer than just laughs. Half light-hearted and half serious, this coming-of-age dramedy explores teenage angst and gender discrimination faced by the gay community. A marvellously clever scene about Simon’s imagination invites the audience to put themselves into the character's shoes, who often worries about how others will think of him if he comes out as gay.

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The main cast gave a lot of soul to their characters; Robinson managed to communicate the anxiety, loneliness and everyday struggle of a closeted gay teenage boy, while conveying the innocence and feelings of adolescent love. The supporting actors were very charming as well, especially Miller and Natasha Rothwell (as Ms Albright, the students’ drama teacher) who played two of the most spirited, wicked, and entertaining roles.

Though the film is easy to follow and logical, the plot manages to remain interesting. The fact that the mystery of Blue was untangled little by little and was also not resolved until the end, kept it interesting.

By authentically portraying Simon’s relationship with his family, friends, and also himself Love, Simon brings to light the self doubts and offensive gossip that may be part of a gay teen’s life. Apart from the jokes in the film, the drama helps viewers to understand the negative impact of putting false stereotypes and labels on people, as well as cyber bullying. If you enjoyed Lady Bird, you’ll love this too!

Edited by Nicole Moraleda

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This article appeared in the Young Post print edition as
A lot more than just laughs


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