It's the summer of 1994, and the streets of New York are pulsing with hip-hop. Set against this backdrop, a lonely teenager named Luke Shapiro spends his last summer before university selling marijuana throughout New York City, trading it with his unorthodox psychotherapist for treatment, while having a crush on his stepdaughter.
Friendship, love, and coming of age in New York City, summer of 1994. Luke Shapiro has just graduated from high school, sells marijuana, and trades pot for therapy from a psychologist, Dr. Jeffrey Squires. Luke is attracted to a classmate, Stephanie, who's out of his league and Squires' step-daughter. By July, he's hanging out with Stephanie, taking her on his rounds selling pot out of an ice-cream pushcart. Then things take a turn. In the background, Squires and his wife as well as Luke's parents are having their troubles. Written by
The scene in which Luke dances and the pavement lights up is a reference to Michael Jackson's video of his song "Billie Jean." See more »
Curlz, the font used on Stephanie's yearbook page, was not released until 1995. See more »
Luke, have you had any more thoughts about what you're gonna be as far as a profession goes?
Mom, he's got time.
I'm just asking!
Actually, I'm thinking about becoming a shrink.
Psychology! It's not quite the shoe business, but it's a very interesting field.
I figure I'm an expert because everyone around me is so fucking crazy, you know?
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When the Sony Pictures Classics logo appears at the very beginning and at the very end of the film, the word "classics" is erased and replaced with a graffiti rendering of the same word. See more »
A thirty-something's dream summer movie, a bittersweet romantic comedy ironically bleached by the day-glo hip hop soundtrack. It's better than a simple nostalgia montage though. The unlikely friendship of Luke Shapiro (Josh Peck) and his psychiatrist (Kingsley) is the buddy movie subplot that might as well be the permissive 60s and its zonked-out, ideologically vacant progeny.
The two men muddle through, but it's the summer romance in summery New York that propels the film. Luke doesn't have any sort of direction until he's gifted the company of Olivia Thirlby's Stephanie, a streetwise but unthinking classmate - with mate being the operative word.
It's a pretty straightforward film. There's plenty of amiable humour and a number of small but well-drawn supporting characters. I felt it missed a trick though. The temperament of the film seems so well-judged, human but halcyon, that I was preparing myself for an enormous twist, a juddering revelation or emotional detonation. Instead Levine chokes and goes for a weak final 15 mins with too much talk and unable to stop the comic wagon on which he's carted the rest of the film along. 7/10
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