There are few film genres as tried and true as the good old fashioned romantic comedy. While there have been endless sappy and quirky rom-coms, certain movies transcend the genre by being self-aware and having challenging plot points. One of the most recent classics is 500 Days of Summer, starring Zooey Deschanel as the title character, and Joseph Gordon-Levitt as aspiring architect Tom Hansen. 500 Days of Summer is stylish and unique, but its ending has drawn some ire from cinephiles over the years. Since the movie is primarily told from Tom's perspective, there have been quite a few audience members who have takem umbrage with Summer's ability to marry someone other than Tom. After seeing a hater on Twitter, Joseph Gordon-Levitt defended both the movie and Deschanel's character, saying:
Watch it again. It's mostly Tom's fault. He's projecting. He's not listening. He's selfish. Luckily he grows by the end.
Well, there you go. 500 Days of Summer focuses on two equally flawed characters, and Joseph Gordon-Levitt is not going to let Tom Hansen get off the hook. That seems to be the resolve at the film's end, but clearly it didn't register with everyone.
Joseph Gordon-Levitt's tweet shows how much the actor has truly thought about his character's intentions in 500 Days of Summer, and how the movie ultimately concludes. The layers of Summer and Tom's relationship are peeled back, and it soon becomes clear they're just trying their best. But being human, their best isn't necessarily correct or healthy.
When Tom first meets Summer at the elevator at work, he instantly falls in love. Because he's a romantic with a penchant for The Smiths, he thinks Zooey Deschanel's character must be his one true love. Conversely, Summer tells him over and over again that she's not looking to be in a committed relationship with him, but that they're simply enjoying each other's companionship. But Tom is steadfast in his affections, and ultimately ends up hurt when Summer follows through and even gets married to another man.
Luckily, both of the characters ultimately look inward and take responsibility for their missteps. Just like so many other relationships, theirs fell apart because of the various circumstances and personalities involved. And if both Tom and Joseph Gordon-Levitt himself can make peace with Summer's decision, then so should moviegoers. Especially since 500 Days of Summer hit theaters way back in 2009.
You can watch Tom and Summer have some closure below.
Now don't you wish everyone got to have such a constructive dialogue at the end of their relationships? Alas, that's just not most people's reality. Neither is the spontaneous musical number that Tom had after he and Summer had sex for the first time.
You can purchase your own copy of 500 Days of Summer now. In the meantime, check out our 2018 release list to plan your next trip to the movies.