Jeremy (1973)

“Music is the only time I feel like I’m me…”

Jeremy

Synopsis:
Jeremy (Robby Benson), an aspiring cellist, falls in love with Susan (Glynnis O’Connor), a new student at his high school.

Genres:

Response to Peary’s Review:
As Peary notes, this “sweet, well-acted, unexploitative teenage romance” is notable for introducing stars Robbie Benson and Glynnis O’Connor (real-life lovers) to the screen. Director Arthur Barron perfectly captures the nuances of first love, and handles Jeremy and Susan’s lovemaking scene with tenderness and taste. I like the fact that the screenplay allows us to see so much of Jeremy’s quirky life before he first spots Susan — indicating that this busy, independent young man is not especially pining for just any girlfriend, but instead falls truly in love with Susan.

Redeeming Qualities:

  • Glynnis O’Connor as an atypical, self-possessed young beauty
    Glynnis O'Connor
  • Jeremy’s awkward attempts to woo Susan
    Wooing
  • A sensitive, honest portrayal of teenage sexuality emerging from mutual love and respect
    Mutual Love
  • Interesting on-location camera work in New York
    Walking in NY

Must See?
No, but it’s recommended.

Links:

2 Responses to “Jeremy (1973)”

  1. First viewing. Not a must. Yes, granted, it’s ‘sweet and unexploitative’ but it’s more a mood piece than a film. It does successfully capture the feeling of wholeness discovered by two young people who very much need to feel alive and loved. But it also doesn’t go anywhere. It just stays put. As well, I can’t offhand think of many/any guys of any age who would be anything but antsy watching it–particularly when it indulges in the non-dialogue longueurs of Jeremy following Susan, being with Susan, feeling alone without Susan. That could just mean that it’s not a must for guys–but it really is short on much but first love brushstrokes. For what it’s worth, O’Connor’s performance is somewhat moving, but Benson pretty much comes off as ‘goofy’ as O’Connor’s character says he is–and he walks on cars! On the plus side, however, there’s an enjoyable sequence of a classical music concert 30 minutes in.

  2. I’ve gone back and forth about whether to vote this film as “must see” or not (I’ll admit a personal favoritism towards it), though I believe it’s at least “recommended” because it marks the screen debut of O’Connor (who, according to Peary’s “Cult Movie Stars” book, has a bit of a following). But I think it’s actually more than just a mood piece — as a teen, meeting someone and falling in love for the first time is enough of an “event” to merit the full coverage it’s given here; and the fact that Jeremy loses Susan so soon after meeting her shows the devastation of being a teenager and unable to control some of the most fundamental life choices (i.e., where to live), despite FEELING like an adult in terms of love and sex and commitment. I think Benson’s goofiness is also completely realistic, and adds to the wonder and amazement he feels at finding someone who appreciates this aspect of his nature.

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