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|Index||39 reviews in total|
I have watched this movie well over 100-200 times, and I love it each and every time I watched it. Yes, it can be very corny but it is also very funny and enjoyable. The camp shown in the movie is a real camp that I actually attended for 7 years and is portrayed as camp really is, a great place to spend the summer. Everyone who has ever gone to camp, wanted to go to camp, or has sent a child to camp should see this movie because it'll bring back wonderful memories for you and for your kids.
This movie is by far one of my favorites. I saw it while in college in the early 90's, and while I couldn't identify with the thirtysomethings in the film, I felt that the story, characters, and movie in general were top notch. To the people who spoke negatively of Indian Summer, feel free to stick to your overblown Armageddon-type movies and leave the movies with a great, wholesome story to those who can appreciate them.
Deeply humorous yet honest comedy about a bunch of grownups (Bill Paxton, Julie Warner, Kevin Pollak, Elizabeth Perkins, Vincent Spano, Matt Craven, and Diane Lane) who are invited back to spend a week to Tomawka, a camp in (Ontario) Canada by their former consuelor (Alan Arkin). Writer/director Mike Binder drew upon his experience at the same camp as the main source of creating a gentle and understanding yarn that makes sense. Also, the movie has plenty of funny moments, some of which are completely bizarre like my favorite, the one involves using masking tape. Newton Thomas Sigel ("The Usual Suspects", "Three Kings") provides the film with some impressive shots of the Canadian wilderness. Among the cast, Sam Raimi, director of "THE EVIL DEAD" films and "The Gift", appears here as Arkin's bumbling right-hand man. One more thing, this film reassured me that a camp doesn't have to be a site of bloody murders.
I thoroughly enjoyed this film overall, but four things really stand out:
Sam Raimi's perfect comic timing and performance as the camp handy(?)man,
Alan Arkin's wonderful characterisation of the camp owner, and best of
the cinematography. The beautiful golden tones of the exterior scenes
me into the film like a sunset at the lakeshore draws me into my own
The dialog and mood feel very natural and believable. Some reviewers criticise the lack of a more "profound" script. To me, it is exactly that lack that makes this film work. The characters and their problems seem real and because of that, I care about what happens to them.
The bottom line is that all the parts come together to create a whole that feels right.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
We saw 'Indian Summer' as part of a quest to see most Diane Lane movies. She
is superb as always. The movie has "Big Chill" feel to it, but is a quite
different story. Here a group of 30-somethings get together in 1992 at the
Canadian summer camp they all were at 20 years earlier. Which would have
made all the characters born around 1960 or so. In fact, the actors were
born between 1955 and 1965, Lane being the youngest and Paxton the oldest.
Alan Arkin is great as the camp master, for the last 43 years. A former
champion boxer, he runs a tight schedule and seems to always know what is
going on. This is a movie about relationships, and in some cases healing old
wounds. We found it mildly entertaining, but a bit disappointed in the
story. Sam Raimi, of late directing the Spiderman movies, plays "Stick", the
hapless camp assistant, and plays him very humorously.
SPOILERS follow, please quit reading. Turns out that was to be the last summer for the camp. At the end, the characters played by Paxton and Lane, having discovered each other over the seven days, decide to take over the camp, and ask what it would cost. "Nothing. You can have it. Nothing here but old buildings." The movie ends with a scene of the next batch of kids rushing ashore to meet the new camp masters. In the middle, one husband/wife relationship is healed. A man who used his fiancee (Williams) as his personal "toy" was put in his place as she broke off the engagement (subject line quote). A long-buried boxing trophy was dug up and given back to Arkin.
Saw it on VHS from the public library. Sure makes one appreciate DVD!!
A quiet, sweet and beutifully nostalgic movie on how it is to be confronted with old friends and surroundings from your youth with all that memories and the problems and sorrows of the present with you. A movie that makes you feel good. All the ingredients are here: old jelousy, rivalry, friendship and loyalty. Mischief, nightly fridge-raids and all the other fun stuff that we all remember from our summer camps. All the characters get the opportunity for a week to experience this again as the old camp-leader now is retiring and want to meet the children from the golden years of the camp. All of them are now in their thirties and in the middle of their careers.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
There is this private campground in Plymouth, Massachusetts, that's
been around since 1959. My grandparents were among its founders, my
parents had a site starting in 1965, and my two brothers have sites
(This doesn't have anything directly to do with the movie; bear with me.)
I spent summers at Blueberry Hill from when I was five years old to when I was eighteen, and it is to people like me to whom this film speaks: the ones for whom a group camp in the woods was, as my fiancée tells of me, "the good and happy place." If you've never experienced the lifestyle, Indian Summer will probably be lost on you; don't bother. It's not quick-paced, it doesn't have rapid cuts, the plots aren't in the least bit convoluted, it has no explosions, such dramatic tension as exists is mild, there aren't any A-list actors, there are no rapid-fire quips just to show off how clever the scriptwriters are (other than, perhaps, Kimberley Williams' killer line about how her fiancé shouldn't "overwind his toys.") That is not the least degree what this movie is about, any more than The Godfather is a slasher flick just because it has a lot of on screen gore.
But Indian Summer is Godfather's polar opposite. If you have experienced the lifestyle, see this movie. Don't read any more, just do it.
For me, this is a 9/10 film.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I was looking over our DVD tower last night for something to watch. We were between NetFlix mailings and it was a quiet Saturday night. I pulled one out that I never heard of before and realized it was borrowed from a friend. From the jacket, it sounded like a rip-off of "The Big Chill" but, with the all-star cast, felt it might be worth watching. Boy was I wrong!!! Not only was it like "The Big Chill," it was a rip-off almost character by character. The Bill Paxton character was a copy of William Hurt ("where have you been all this time" role) -spoiler warning- and, lo and behold, he remains behind to take care of the old place(cabin/camp). Kimberly Williams = Meg Tilly; jerk womanizer Matt Craven = Jeff Goldblum etc., etc. I found myself wondering why I'm even watching these people. There was insufficient character development for me to find any interest in them. How did "Unca Lou" even find these characters after 20 years? Plus it wasn't even funny, except when Perkins fell, err 'flopped' out of bed the first morning, it was a sign and I missed it. After it was over, I asked my wife, "Were there any endearing characters in this film? ... Are you sleeping over there?" She replied, "No, I'm still thinking...No, none I can think of."
I am a sucker for films like this. Films that take you back and let you
relive your childhood. I'm a grown up now and have many grown up
responsibilities like a mortgage, kids, dogs, a wife and a slew of
others. I enjoy my life but it is not as innocent and carefree like it
was when I was twelve. Mike Binder's Indian Summer knows this and
explores this like he was twelve years old. It brings you back to a
time when life was simpler and much more fun. It brings you back to a
time when worrying about your first kiss and wondering if you could
finish the camp marathon were important issues. Indian Summer is a
fantastic film and it is one that should be watched at least once a
year just so you can sit back and laugh...and reminisce.
The film stars Kevin Pollak, Bill Paxton, Diane Lane and Matt Craven (to name a few) as childhood friends that are being summoned back to Camp Tamakwa by their former Head Camp Counsellor, Uncle Lou. Uncle Lou is played perfectly by Alan Arkin. He is kind of guy who is the patriarch of the group. He is also all knowing and encompasses the true spirit of a father figure and someone who understands the simple things in life. He has a hard time relating to today's kids that need a walkman blaring in their ears when they are at a place of immense beauty like Tamakwa. This is a camp that has moose wandering through the camp, leaves turning colours that God gave them and water for as far as the eye can see. Uncle Lou yearns for the days of old and asks his former campers back to the camp to see one of them will take over the camp. While they are all together again, we get to see their trials and tribulations and perhaps a new love could spring between them.
As the adults return to the camp, it isn't long before they act like kids again as the typical camp pranks get played all over again. They take toilet paper out of the stalls, the put toothpaste on sleeping bags and so on. All of this is done hilariously and with actors like Pollak and Paxton, it is all very funny stuff.
But beyond the hilarity, we get to explore some very real adult emotion that anyone can relate to. In one of my favourite scenes, Kevin Pollak and Elizabeth Perkins are overlooking a bay where they used to go canoing as kids. Pollak can't get over how small it all looks and Perkins finally tells him that the bay didn't get smaller, they just got bigger. It doesn't hammer the point home, but it does it subtly. We all grow up, we all move on and we all unfortunately can't live like we did 20 years ago. The more things change, the more they stay the same.
Indian Summer is a character driven film and it is written beautifully by Mike Binder who actually did attend Camp Camp Tamakwa, (as did Sam Raimi, who played Stick in the film) and it is his fond and vivid memories of his experiences that fuel the film. There are many touching scenes and there are many hilarious ones also. Both are perfect.
I love this film. I love everything about it and it is a true hidden gem.
Great cast, good acting. Its a real video-movie. Play it when you are feeling sad, missing the good old days. This movie makes you realize that these days aren't that good after all. But don't expect a movie with a great story. It's just funny and entertaining. Laugh and cry if you want. Because you will if you open your heart to this Indian Summer
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