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A Summer Place (1959)

Approved | | Drama, Romance | 18 November 1959 (USA)
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A self-made businessman rekindles a romance with a former flame while their two teenage children begin a romance of their own with drastic consequences for both couples.

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Won 1 Golden Globe. Another 1 win & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
Mrs. Emily Hamilton Hamble
Jack Richardson ...
Claude Andrews
Martin Eric ...
Todd Harper, Handyman at Pine Island Inn
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Storyline

The Hunter family has long owned a mansion on Pine Island, a summer resort located off the Maine coast. Bart Hunter's now deceased father was able to open the mansion for free when Bart was younger, but current owner Bart, a drunkard and weak man, must now live there year round for financial survival with his wife Sylvia and their late teen-aged son Johnny, the family who are barely able to eke out a living with the mansion now as a year-round inn which is in an extreme state of disrepair. Bart and Sylvia are in a quietly unhappy marriage due largely to Bart's drinking. The Buffalo-based Jorgensons - husband Ken Jorgenson, his wife Helen Jorgenson and their late teen-aged daughter Molly Jorgenson - have rented rooms at the inn for the summer, while Ken looks for a summer house on the island. Ken lived on the island twenty years ago, he actually a working class lifeguard for Bart's father at that time. Ken is now a self-made millionaire as a research scientist, who had never been back ... Written by Huggo

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The Sensations...of the Great Best-Seller!

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

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Release Date:

18 November 1959 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Die Sommerinsel  »

Filming Locations:

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Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Max Steiner's main theme for this film is probably his best-known after his "Tara Theme" for "Gone With the Wind." As with "Tara's Theme," it has remained a favorite ever since, with several charting recordings. Percy Faith's version (American Columbia: 1960) went to Number 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in 1960, remaining in that position for 9 weeks, becoming both the Number One Instrumental Hit of the Rock Era and the first instrumental to win the Grammy for Record of the Year. Other charting versions were by Billy Vaughn (Dot: 1960, peaking at #2), the Lettermen (Capitol: 1965, using Mack Discant's lyrics and peaking at #16), and the Ventures (Liberty: 1969, at #83). Faith himself re-recorded it, shortly before his death in 1976, in a disco arrangement entitled "Summer Place '76." See more »

Goofs

Johnny (Troy Donahue) kisses Molly (Sandra Dee) in the garden with his arms wrapped around hers and hers encircling his lower chest. A close-up shows her arms wrapped around his neck. See more »

Quotes

Helen Jorgenson: This is Dr. Matthias. I sent for him from the mainland. I want you to take off every stitch you've got on and let him examine you.
Molly Jorgenson: But we haven't done anything wrong, mama. We slept all night...
Helen Jorgenson: I'm not asking you for the truth because I know you'd lie. So I'm having him examine you completely and make his own report.
Molly Jorgenson: No!
Helen Jorgenson: [grabbing Molly's arm] You have disgraced me enough, now do as I say!
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Connections

Referenced in A Night in the Life of Jimmy Reardon (1988) See more »

Soundtracks

Bridal March
(uncredited)
from "Lohengrin"
Composed by Richard Wagner
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Delinquent parents and delinquent children...make a sudsy melodrama...
26 August 2006 | by See all my reviews

Despite being almost overwhelmingly melodramatic when treating the subject of sex in the context of its time, A SUMMER PLACE manages to rise above the soap suds when dealing with mismatched parents and a rekindled love affair (DOROTHY McGUIRE and RICHARD EGAN) that almost destroys everyone's happiness.

It's all very lush looking in magnificent color, a Pine Island resort in Maine photographed principally in Northern California along the Monterey coast. Whenever emotions soar, whether quiet emotions or full throttled ones, Max Steiner's music is there ready to lend a helping hand.

As the teen-aged lovers, SANDRA DEE and TROY DONAHUE are just as photogenic as the landscapes they're photographed against, especially when the color cameras turn their close inspection on the two bronzed, blue-eyed stars. While not quite as photogenic, DOROTHY McGUIRE and RICHARD EGAN are quietly having a love affair of their own which must be kept hidden from their respective spouses until a showdown that leads to a rather satisfying conclusion.

The handsome production values and earnest performances are matched well against Max Steiner's famous score. His "The Theme from A Summer Place" is as gorgeous and popular as ever with soundtrack fans.

A SUMMER PLACE can take its place alongside other handsomely produced soapers of the '50s. CONSTANCE FORD and ARTHUR KENNEDY do very well in strong supporting roles and it's all a bit more substantial than it sounds on paper.

Easy to see why Max Steiner's "Theme from A Summer Place" hit the top of the music charts for a long, long time in the summer of '59.


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