This story of young love and innocence will transport you into the imaginative world of teenage Daisy (Claire Danes) as she falls in love with her classmate Ethan (Jude Law).
This romance story does not begin like most, as Daisy is still very much an innocent young girl among her more sexually aware peers. She appears in the movie as an only child and lacking some of the more "normal" social graces that would guide her behavior to be far less entertaining to the audience. Daisy is much like Alice, from Alice in Wonderland, and remains enthralled by idealistic romanticism throughout the film.
Daisy pours her heart into poetry, is open and honest when in conversation, and feels everything so deeply that her sentimentality and depth is often perceived as a ferocity that is intimidating to others.
However her sweet persona, childlike nature, and Claire Dane's utter charm makes this character a fascinating and intriguing female lead.
After stalking her crush, Ethan, for weeks watching as he comes for a morning run each morning out of his building, she then writes a poem and reads it to the class admitting secretly that she has been stalking him. He knows this, however, finds her intriguing and takes this opportunity as the window to speak with her and ask her out on a date.
Daisy, is the epitome of a hopeless romantic. Her young innocence provides her with idealistic views of love and romance, but she is also so terrified of stepping out of her comfort zone to allow a relationship with Ethan to occur. However, Ethan's persistence and her infallible crush on him results in their romance.
Throughout the story line we see a girl in a young woman's body who is struggling to escape the imaginary world of books and stories to properly assimilate into reality. She is a captivating figure and is like Alice, in Alice in Wonderland, because she seems perpetually is trapped in her own imaginative world that is sabotaging her social and relational success.
Though I value her imagination and her unhindered passion, her disassociation from reality makes it difficult for her to relate, connect and understand others outside of books in a mature way that enables her to put her emotions aside to understand and connect to another's.
The setting of the story presides in beautiful gardens, fields, shabby chic styled homes, classic diners, and preparatory schools. The flowers surrounding the film's setting (whenever Daisy is not with Ethan) often reflect the beauty in Daisy's innocence and her whimsical story line. She is drawn to dancing in fountains, lying in fields, and riding on carousels and continues to be drawn to childlike attractions throughout the film; never to develop or mature beyond this state of childish nature.
It is while riding the carousel with Daisy, that Ethan realizes that this dream like state she forces herself and everyone else around her to assimilate to, is unhealthy and too "intense" for him. She was not willing to change and adapt to "normality" and put childish dreams and fantasies aside to grow into a less sensitive and more adult version of herself. The charm of her youth and timidity dissolved as Ethan realized that her desire for living in a "dream" far outweighed her desire to live and experience that real world as it was happening with him.
The only explanation to this phenomena is that Daisy was an only child; thus creating an isolating environment that stunted her social growth. On the other hand, Daisy may have had some mild form of psychological disorder (as was hinted to multiple times throughout the film.)
Never the less, this film has topped my list of top 15 movies for its unfailing romanticism prevailing throughout the setting, apparel, story line, and character development of the film as Daisy tests out the fate of love amidst her glorified innocence.