Gina and movie reviewer Derrick Clements discuss Love, Simon.
“Everyone deserves a great love story, but for 17-year-old Simon Spier, it’s a little more complicated. He hasn’t told his family or friends that he’s gay, and he doesn’t know the identity of the anonymous classmate that he’s fallen for online. Resolving both issues proves hilarious, terrifying and life-changing.”
Thank you for providing this thought-provoking review of Love, Simon! I had such a visceral reaction to this movie as a gay active Mormon in his early 40s who has never experienced romance. Yep, not even a kiss! I guess that’s why I still love teen and coming-of-age movies, as I find myself suspended in that time of life in my own emotional development, wondering what it would be like to experience a romantic connection with someone.
As much as I thrilled for Simon in that closing scene on the Ferris wheel, I also couldn’t help but feel the tug of depression that has been my frequent companion in life and wonder if I could maintain a life of celibacy and solitude for another 40 years. It didn’t help that I attended the movie by myself while visiting Provo, surrounded by groups of jovial BYU students who were happily chatting and reacting throughout the movie. I used to go to that very theater as a BYU student with my college friends, but now I was there alone, not even noticed by the passing crowds and couples who might have extended a look, a nod, or a hello. As the dynamic duo of Derrick and Gina reviewed this movie, I felt it deeply when Derrick said: “What a shame to deny this joy.” And Gina asked: “What are you doing to people when you ask them to push this down?” Yes, it does do a lot of damage, but having stayed in the fight for so long, I have to say it also produces a tremendous level of faith and spiritual development as you reach out to God for sustenance and greater knowledge on a near constant basis.
I resonate with the astonishing faith and tale of Joan of Arc. She willingly complied with God’s request to remain celibate as she gave her life to both her Heavenly King and her earthly king, saving the nation of France from the English. Giving up the life of marriage and family she had once desired to instead carry out God’s will—mounted on horseback and engaged in war at the head of her Puritan army—came with compensating spiritual gifts and development. Surely, a simple farm life in the early 1400s would have been forgotten by all. But Joan’s saintly walk with God until her dying breath, burning at the stake, has inspired the human race for centuries. Choosing the path that God asked her to walk made all the difference. Celibacy is certainly not the request that God makes of all of us, but I believe it is the path he has asked of me. And I speak only for myself. It has been a grueling journey at times but one that I would never trade because of how I have come to know God and Christ. They are my rock, and I can speak with conviction when I say that any deprivation I may endure in this life will be more than made up for in the next. I love them with all my heart.
Thanks again for all you do to help us understand the faith that drives us. You are sensational!
Wow, what a review. God speed and may he continue to guide your path in the life and beyond.