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8/4/2022 • 4 min read
Filmmaker James Ponsoldt has built an entire career out of character-focused sensitive dramas with great casts. SMASHED, THE SPECTACULAR NOW, and THE END OF THE TOUR are all standouts from their respective years thanks to Ponsoldt's touch. Now, after spending some time directing episodic television, Ponsoldt returns with a movie called SUMMERING.
SUMMERING follows four pre-teen girls through Labor Day weekend before they enter middle school. As the four make a startling discovery, their last days of pure childhood are steered into a new direction that they never could have predicted. Check out the trailer for SUMMERING, and learn everything else you need to know about the movie below.
That's a really nice trailer that gives us a good sense of the SUMMERING vibe. And, yes, as the girls find a dead body there are intentional aspects of this movie that harken back to STAND BY ME, the coming-of-age classic from 1986.
The languid feel of this footage really captures the feeling of late-summer days, especially for kids who are about to transition up from a familiar school and social setting to something new and potentially difficult. It's not hard to see how the discovery made by these girls — and the actions it prompts them to take — can be an evocative metaphor for their steps into a new level of maturity.
James Ponsoldt has a talent for finding new acting talent, and we have to wonder who in the SUMMERING cast will end up playing bigger roles over the next few years. There are two core sets of characters, here. One is the girls themselves: Lia Barnett as Daisy, who is concerned about being too normal; Madalen Mills as the intellectually rigorous Dina; Eden Grace Redfield as Mari, who is apprehensive about going to a new Catholic school; and the spiritual Lola, played by Sanai Victoria.
Then there are the more recognizable talents who appear as the mothers of the girls: Megan Mullally, Lake Bell, Ashley Madekwe, and Sarah Cooper. In a review from the movie's debut at Sundance in January 2022, Variety notes that "some of the film’s most affecting, naturally performed moments come when the girls are away from each other, trying to find common language instead with their mothers."
All images courtesy of Bleecker Street.
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