Summer of '42 is a timeless, haunting love story........
Betty June Moore | Douglas, Georgia USA | 01/05/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"It is the summer after Pearl Harbor. The world is at war, and America is sending her best, strongest and healthiest men to fight overseas. Meanwhile, those too young, old, or physically disabled to serve stay behind, as well as wives and sweethearts. Among these are Hermie, Oscy, and Benjie (Gary Grimes, Jerry Houser and Oliver Conant). Together, this "terrible trio" raids the Coast Guard station, frolics on the beach on Packett Island, and sneaks looks at "dirty pictures" from a medical book. But even as the three friends goof around on lazy summer days, the war's effects will soon touch the more serious and sensitive 15-year-old Hermie. He finds himself falling in love with the beautiful Dorothy (Jennifer O'Neill), who is seven years older and married. He worships her from afar, enduring both his friends' merciless teasing and his own confusion about his feelings.But when Dorothy's husband Pete goes overseas to enter the fray, Hermie befriends Dorothy, helping her with chores such as carrying her groceries to her house on the beach and placing boxes in the attic. At the same time, the more rambunctious Oscy (and Hermie's best friend) is trying very hard to pick up girls and lose his virginity, and he makes it his mission in life to help Hermie do the same. So he copies information from a medical book that Benjie says "belongs to the house" where he spends the summer. Oscy also attempts to set up a date for the "terrible trio" at the movies, but that almost falls apart when Benjie and the third girl don't want to go. I don't want to give away what happens next, but it's pretty funny.But the heart of the movie revolves, as many reviewers have said, around Hermie's love for Dorothy, and how he comes to manhood unexpectedly when Dorothy finds out that her husband has been killed in action. It's a beautiful, discreet and bittersweet sequence, and will leave the viewer with indelible memories of a haunting, timeless experience.I like Summer of '42 because it is sweet and gentle, hilarious at times, and always very touching. Michel Legrand's Oscar-winning score is simple yet evocative, and Herman Raucher's screenplay was later adapted by the writer into a best selling novel. I recommend this film to young and old alike as a fine example of what a coming-of-age movie should be like."
Poignant and Unforgettable
Wilfredo C. Derequito | Dhahran, Saudi Arabia | 01/30/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Emotional, poignant, sad, funny...this movie has all the ingredients of an unforgettable tale.Every male adult can surely identify with Hermie as he grapples with the rapid and difficult changes in his young life as he navigates the thin line separating adolescence from adulthood. We see his easygoing, innocent and fun-filled existence suddenly bloom into one involving an awakening and burgeoning awareness of his sexuality. And we have Dorothy, a young and beautiful woman awaiting her husband's return from war only to learn of his death. Combine these two kindred spirits - a boy waking up to his sexual urges and a sad, lonely woman who has just lost a husband - and we have the centerpiece of a great and sensitive story. Theirs is a journey of innocence and awakening, quite similar to that in Bobby Goldsboro's 'Summer'. Then factor in Michel Legrand's brilliant musical score and we have a giant movie classic.Summer of '42 aptly defines what a good movie should be."
Unparalleled, powerful and unmatched
Michael R. Lachance | Maine, USA | 01/18/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This film (as you will read in other reviews here) is simply one of the deepest, hardest hitting and artistic films of its kind. The emotional rollercoaster and coming of age experience has yet to be conveyed better than in Summer of '42. Artistically filmed using an intentionally soft image, this film captures the times and atmosphere of a small summer island in 1940's America in an unbelievably effective manner. I saw this film when i was 19 years old and had never experienced such a film before. Jennifer O'Neil is undoubtebly at the peak of her allure. The Fun, Frolic, Confusion, Desire, Strife, Simplicity, Complexity and Tragedy of one's loss of youth are all painted here in this Classic American film. Accept no substitutes, because although many have tried, no one has yet to reproduce what this film has got. You must see it to appreciate it.The recently released DVD is worth the price. Picture quality is excellent with perfect color and resolution. Letterbox format. However, the obsolete Dolby Soundtrack is a disappointment, as there are no surround channels and audio separation is limited. DVD extras include cast bios and the original theatrical trailer. All-in-all a worthwhile DVD upgrade to any VHS version."
Summer Of '42 Haunting Romance.
Anthony Capialbi | Brooklyn, New York | 06/16/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I was 16 when I first saw this movie in the theater back in 1971 when it came out. It was an incredible experience for me because I related to this coming of age haunting romantic film. Young man falling for older beautiful dream girl. I recently purchased this DVD and I watched it on the big screen in my home theater.... I was transported back in time to 1971 falling in love with Jennifer O'Neill all over again. the DVD quality is just great and this is a film on my top 10 list of all time. They just don't make films of this scope anymore. The film has no special effects, no gimmicks, just a great timeless story and a fantastic score. Buy this DVD, it's worth every penny...you will fall in love I guarantee you."