Directed by Greg Berlanti (PG-13)
A high school senior hesitates to come out.
Love, Simon is “a milestone that feels overdue,” said Daniel D’Addario in Time. The first major studio film with a gay teenage protagonist, this gentle romantic comedy does provide a corrective to countless past movies in which LGBT characters served only as sidekicks or punch lines. But high school senior Simon Spier, a charming, “brusquely masculine” lacrosse player, enjoys so much support as he struggles to come out about his sexuality that half the teen audience won’t recognize his cushy suburban world, and those who do will wonder why the screenplay didn’t give Simon more hurdles. The character’s average-guy persona, though, is “exactly what makes this particular tale groundbreaking,” said Anne Cohen in Refinery29.com. Nick Robinson is perfect in the role, helping us appreciate the movie’s main triumph—“that it manages to highlight the small ways in which even the most open-minded among us make coming out difficult.” Safe as the story may be, “letting two boys kiss in a movie this innocuous represents its own kind of revolution,” said Alonso Duralde in TheWrap.com. “Upbeat and life-affirming,” Love, Simon couldn’t have been made circa 1982, and it’s “exactly the kind of movie I would have watched over and over again (on the sly) as a closeted teenager.”