Pete, an eight-year-old Catholic boy growing up in the suburbs of Chicago in the mid-1970s, attends Catholic school, where as classes let out for the summer, he's admonished by a nun to ... See full summary »
Pete, an eight-year-old Catholic boy growing up in the suburbs of Chicago in the mid-1970s, attends Catholic school, where as classes let out for the summer, he's admonished by a nun to follow the path of the Lord, and not that of the Devil. Perhaps taking this message a bit too seriously, Pete decides it's his goal for the summer to help someone get into heaven; having been told that Catholicism is the only sure path to the kingdom of the Lord, Pete decides to convert a Jew to Catholicism in order to improve their standing in the afterlife. Hoping to find a likely candidate, Pete begins visiting a nearby synagogue, where he gets to know Rabbi Jacobson, who responds to Pete's barrage of questions with good humor. Pete also makes friends with the Rabbi's son, Danny, who is about the same age; when he learns that Danny is seriously ill, he decides Danny would be an excellent choice for conversion. When the priest at Pete's church informs Pete that all will be tested before they pass the... Written by
This film was the result of "Project Greenlight," the first-time-director competition launched by Ben Affleck, Matt Damon, and Miramax, and was the subject of the HBO documentary of the same name, which aired in Winter 2002. The documentary revealed many behind-the-scenes snafus, which led to the mid-production firing of co-producer Jeff Balis. See more »
Pete is playing with a Mattel Football handheld game which wasn't invented until 1977, but the movie is set in 1976. See more »
I watched the entire series of Project Greenlight in one sitting (had to rent it on DVD, we don't have HBO yet in my ice country); had I not watched the show, I would not have given Stolen Summer more than a cursory glance. Though I enjoyed Greenlight more than the movie, I enjoyed Stolen Summer for its sincerity and some of the performances. Plus, seeing what I'll have to go through in the future made me appreciate Pete Jones' situation, thus making me ease up on the film. Despite that, the film has its sloppy moments: the two boys are not exactly RADA grads, the editing could be much better (though the same could be said about 99% of every film made since the mid 1930s) and some of the camera work is unnecessarily shaky (I enjoy handheld shots, but only in moderation and when they fit the context of the scene). But the performances by Aidan Quinn and especially Kevin Pollak are pretty damn good. Yes, there is melodrama, but it works; furthermore, it actually deals with big questions like death, god, and existence, high concept terms you wouldn't find in a high concept picture. So watch Stolen Summer, but please watch it after Greenlight.
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