Review Summer Scars

Dieser Review enthält SPOILER!

We got to keep our mouths shut!
von nymus

The following review was written by Mike from

Based on an incident that happened to him as an adolescent, director Julian Richards’s fourth feature, Summer Scars, captures the final moments at the sharp precipice between cocky childhood innocence and the chaotic uncertainty of growing up.

The story follows six fourteen-year-olds who manage to skip school and steal a moped before the opening credits end. Taunting each other with thick accents and egg-shell tough exteriors, the gang sets off for their hangout in the woods to drink beer, grill burgers and take turns on the "nicked" bike. The light-heartedness quickly fades when Paul (Jonathan Jones) and his disabled brother, Ben (Christopher Conway), literally collide with Peter (Kevin Howarth), a greasy-haired oddball searching for his dog, "Jesus".

Peter befriends the group, taking a few of the boys on escapades in nature, switching between fatherly guide and mischievous peer. Before long, Peter is wielding a pellet gun and refusing to let anyone leave. Peter’s desperation to make an impact on the lives of his young captives elevates the action until it spins recklessly out of control - changing the lives of every character in personal and unforgettable ways.

Richards uses a familiar face - Kevin Haworth (The Last Horror Movie) - and a cast of talented and refreshingly coarse youngsters to create his dark, coming-of-age thriller. Every viewer will recognize a part of his or her younger self in one of the teens. Notably, Amy Harvey’s Leanne, with braces and heavily lined eyes that can be found in any 8th-grade classroom, is a mix of bravery and fragility that strikes at the essence of modern girlhood.

Haworth’s performance is impeccable, crafting a complex character in Peter, a deranged Lost Boy struggling against his age and past to be one of the innocent teens he is torturing. He remains sympathetic through much of the film, though his frustration often leads him to violent outbursts. These volatile shifts in demeanor are pinpricks that illuminate an obscured backstory, hinting at a military background, abuse and emotional immaturity.

Visually, Richards makes use of natural light and often shaky cameras - not unlike his last film, The Last Horror Movie, where the low production values were built into, and enhanced, the story. The choice here was not so obvious, but the decision lends a dirty realism that triggers terror in the viewer.

Like the best short stories, Summer Scars, at 73 minutes long, captures a singular experience with clean beauty, not forcing meaning out of something that simply is. The resolution is subtle but is there in the downcast eyes and slow, measured words of a group joined by a monumental happening and secrecy. "We gotta keep our mouths shut", instructs baby-faced Paul, perhaps wisely knowing that some of life’s moments are ineffable.

staunte im Cinemaxx 2, Hamburg

20 Bewertungen auf



Summer Scars
  • Score [BETA]: 48
  • 3.9/10 20
  • IMDb: 5.6/10
Bewertungen von IMDb werden zuletzt vor dem Festival aktualisiert, falls verfügbar!
© Fantasy FilmFest Archiv 2020-02-25 14:16

Archiv Suche

oder ?