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Summer Dreams: The Story of the Beach Boys (1990)

TV Movie  |   |  Drama, Music  |  29 April 1990 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.2/10 from 273 users  
Reviews: 9 user

Dramatization looks at the tumultuous relationship that existed between rock group The Beach Boy's Brian and Dennis Wilson and their father, Murry. It also examines their struggles with drugs and alcohol.



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Title: Summer Dreams: The Story of the Beach Boys (TV Movie 1990)

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Greg Kean ...
Karen Lamm (as Linda Doná)
Carole Wilson
Marilyn Wilson (as Wendy Kaplan)
Dorothy Dells ...
Andrew Myler ...
Bill (as J. Bill Jones)
Billy Vera ...
Bruce Johnston (as Robert E. Lee)
Maya Lebenzon ...
Kelly Bratten ...


This biopic chronicles the continuing saga of the Beach Boys from 1961 to 1985. Mainly focuses on the Beach Boys resident wildman Dennis Wilson and in a slightly less capacity big brother Brian Wilson. Written by Paul Cartwright <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | Music

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

29 April 1990 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Heroes and Villains  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


A scene of topless women (not seen in the original TV broadcast) was added for the VHS video release. See more »


The film implies that under Murry Wilson's direction, the Beach Boys recorded "Barbara Ann" in a standard session in 1963 or 1964. In reality, the song was recorded "unplugged" in September 1965 after Dean Torrence (of Jan and Dean fame) visited the session for the Beach Boys' Party! album and suggested that they record it. By that time, Murry Wilson had long since been fired as the Beach Boys' manager. See more »


Edited into Cease to Exist (2007) See more »

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User Reviews

Really worth a watch
15 August 2003 | by (Montreal, Quebec) – See all my reviews

As an avid film buff - I've got to say that despite "Summer Dreams" being a tv movie, it is of excellent quality. The acting, in particular Bruce Greenwood in the role of the late Dennis Wilson, is superb and the way in which the story is told is intriguing, touching and real without being over hollywood-ized. Summer Dreams is perhaps the best tv movie I have ever seen. As matter of fact I have had it on video since it first aired. in 1990...quite a long time. If you ever catch it in the tv listings, give it a shot -- it is well worth watching.

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