What do you dream of when you're 16 years old and in a seaside resort in Normandy in the 1980s? A best friend? A lifelong teen pact? Scooting off on adventures on a boat or a motorbike? Living life at breakneck speed? No. You dream of death. Because you can't get a bigger kick than dying. And that's why you save it till the very end. The summer holidays are just beginning, and this story recounts how Alexis grew into himself.
Thankfully, some people still make films like this
Thanks to Ozon for making something that leaves typical McHollywood LA tropes in the dirt. Most gay films pals in comparison. Why? A story, well written story, dedicate visionaries, and actors. This is what cereative cinema is all about. Sure, we've seen the summer romances, and this film certainly does not do anything new in that respect - however that is the point, The skill to present this as an acceptable love affair, with a good twist, is why it's stronger than most. Summer of 85 brings in everything but the kitchen sink from literate queerdom: young romance, Verlaine, Rimbaud, eager French-isms in tragedy, and steamy sensuality. But it's also what Ozon left out: tired politics, rah-rah Pink parade tropes, and endless rants on victimhood. These are boys, who fell in love, and there's a reasonably believable story about them - apparently rooted in a real life saga of a similar situation, found in British newspapers decades ago. My only criticism is, the film could have used a deeper delve into New Romanticism of the 80s - if you're going to do The Cure - go deeper. Rimbaud was a very bad boy, Alex is not 'bad' he's consumed with passion. Slightly more stylized and slightly less topical. That said, this movie is a great watch, I'll see it in cinema post-covid, and highly recommend. Thank God someone is making things like this! "Never run with the masses, there's danger in numbers" - Quentin Crisp
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