Age of Summer film review – Teen film will have you California dreamin’
Age of Summer is a beautiful little movie which opens today in select theaters and VOD. Its a coming-of-age tale with a completely different vibe than any recent film…one which will make you feel nostalgic for the 1980’s teen beach scene in California even if you weren’t born yet or lived in Hong Kong all your life.
The plot revolves around a teenage boy, Minnesota (played by Percy Hynes White), who hits that crucial moment in time when childhood is about to transition to something new — something different and possibly scary — called the teenage years. This involves dealing with bullies, alcohol, and scariest of all for a boy just hitting puberty, GIRLS. It also involves saying goodbye to previously powerful bonds, in order to form new ones.
Age of Summer captures this evolution in the life of a teen boy in a charming, very real way as Minnesota and his best friend Woods (played by Jake Ryan) try out for the junior Life Guard team in Hermosa Beach.
Seeing the cute girls and the older “cool” boys on the tryout squad is of course intimidating, and Minnesota struggles to figure out where exactly he fits in and what his relationship with Woods means. The drama is amped up by the news of a missing young man as well as Minnesota’s beloved Ripper bike getting stolen. Add some romantic tension, a game-changing round of spin-the-bottle, a spaced-out beach bum guru who dispenses tidbits of sage wisdom (or might just be totally crazy), and you have an interesting slice of life captured here by the filmmakers.
Stealing the show is the hard-driving Life Guard trainer, played by the hilarious Diarmaid Murtagh, who speaks in some sort of hyper-Australian accent full of ludicrous expressions which I swear do not actually exist in the English language, but make perfect sense here somehow.
The film is gorgeous to look at, and the acting mostly sufficient. What makes the film is just the vibe, man. The colors. The surfing. The drinking of awful piss-warm beer and loving every drop because you are with your bros and a couple of cute chicks.
It will make you sad to see Summer end. Highly recommended.
Watch Age of Summer on demand: https://itunes.apple.com/us/movie/age-of-summer/id1430575602
Age of Summer is also playing in select cities, check their Facebook at http://facebook.com/ageofsummer page for details.
Distributed by: Freestyle Digital Media (Theatrical & North America), Automatic Entertainment (Foreign Sales)
Directed By: Bill Kiely
Written By: Dave Harris and Bill Kiely
Executive Produced By: Leo Kiely and Ryan Dorff
Produced By: Joseph McKelheer and Bill Kiely
Cast: Percy Hynes White, Peter Stormare, Jake Ryan, Charlotte Sabina, Diarmaid Murtagh, Bryana Alicia Salaz
Run Time: 89 minutes
Rating: Not yet rated