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Laura of Harvest Lane Cottage
4 Stars Out Of 5
Our Family Enjoyed It.
July 15, 2014
Laura of Harvest Lane Cottage
Thank you Edify Media for this review copy.
Broken families, lost dreams, fears, grief. Only one redeemer can make all things work together for good for those who love Christ. We, however, can show the love of Christ and make a real difference, too. The Perfect Summer is a story of redeeming love, compassion, courage, and hope. After her husband's death, a mother and her teenage son move from Chicago to a beach town to live with the mother's estranged father so that she can make a new start. It's like moving to a different world. In this town, everyone surfs. Young Jake does not. He finds courage and strength as his grandfather teaches him. This is a great family film for all ages. There are some really pretty beach scenes and some awesome surfing as well.
In The Perfect Summer, fatherless teenager Jake (Adam Horner) has to leave Chicago and move with his mom (Sydney Penny) to a small surfing town to live with her father (Eric Roberts) when she needs help supporting them. With no home internet, cable, or friends, the transition isn't easy and Jake isn't quite ready to accept the changes.
While using the internet at the local surf shop, owned by Cody (Jason Castro), Jake is attracted to a young surfing prodigy, Kayla (Katie Garfield)... which makes him an instant enemy to the town bully, Tyler (JD Banks). In an effort to fit in, and spend more time with Kayla, Jake agrees when his grandfather, Lou, offers to teach him how to surf. Through these surfing lessons, Jake also learns lessons in life about determination, facing fears, and rising above the challenges when all seems to be crashing around you.
"The Perfect Summer" was written by Nathan Scoggins and Gary Wheeler; Wheeler also directed the film. The dvd is 85 minutes long and suitable for most audiences. The bullying scenes may be too violent for younger viewers, but it is a clean, wholesome movie.
My Review: Despite some criticisms I have, I honestly did enjoy watching this movie. It has a message about moving along with your life no matter how awful things may seem, whether it is due to your own mistakes or when circumstances occur that causes life to pivot. Yet, it is not told in a preachy manner that will turn off the audience it is intended to reach. It can be enjoyed as a simple entertainment or used to start a discussion based on topic or characters
The film moves along in a predictable direction and I did think some of the roles were caricatures of the same type that appears in countless films. That's not to say that the acting was not good; I have just seen these people in nearly every beach film from when I watched "Beach Blanket Bingo" as a child on up to the most recent films. There were also a couple of things that did not quite make sense to me.
The movie is worth watching. Being predictable is not always a bad thing, and I did think the acting was solid. I enjoy watching Eric Roberts in everything I have ever seen him in, and this film is no exception. Both Sydney Penny and Louis Mandylor are seasoned professionals who give great performances. With the exception of Jason Castro (whom I know only as a singer), I don't know the younger actors in the film, but felt they all did justice to their roles.
I received The Perfect Summer compliments of Word Films and Edify Media for my honest review. I was not required to write a favorable review and the opinions expressed here are strictly my own.
Moving from everything you know and leaving your past behind to start over is hard enough. Especially for 17-year-old Jake Reynolds. He has already lost his father just last summer and now his mother, Alyssa (Sydney Penny) has left their family home in Chicago to move in with her father, Lou Reynolds (Erik Roberts) in North Carolina. She thinks the beach town is the perfect place for Jake to find his roots and perhaps a fresh start at a new life. But Jake is pretty determined to stay resentful of his situation despite how welcoming his grandfather is. The one thing he isn't expecting is to learn that cell phone coverage and Wifi isn't something that is available and he will have to seek it out in town at the nearby surf shop and cafe owned by Cody (Jason Castro, American Idol).
Jake thinks he may have found something to interest him beside the internet when he meets Kayla, a beautiful surfer girl who seems interested in him. But things go from bad to worse, when Kayla's ex boyfriend Tyler seems to think that Jake better find a new interest and hurry. Kayla reminds him that they are no longer a couple and she can do whatever she wants with her time and see anyone she pleases. But like all good bullies, that only adds fuel to the fire. No matter where Jake goes, trouble with Tyler follows and soon he is shown just how forceful they can be when they beat him up and break the surfboard his grandfather has loaned him.
Ashamed and feeling less than worthy, Jake feels that moving back to Chicago might be better than trying to fit in with his grandfather. His mother has found an ideal job working as a travel agent and believes they are finally on the right track. But there is always hope in starting over and learning to never live with regrets, something his grandfather has learned after leaving his own daughter behind. He offers to teach Jake how to surf, but the one thing Jake never realizes is that his grandfather is a surfing legend until he learns to trust and accept things on his own terms.
I received The Perfect Summer compliments of Word Films and Edify Media for my honest review. I did not receive any monetary compensation for a favorable review and the opinions expressed here are strictly my own. This is such a great movie because it focuses on handling issues within the family from bullying, to regrets, to sobriety and shows how God's grace can give us all a fresh start at life and to begin to live our lives without regrets. Everyone can have a second chance if we are willing to leave our past mistakes behind us! This is such a great DVD for the entire family and the surfing is amazing. I easily give this a 5 out of 5 stars and family approved by the Dove Foundation and Uplifting Entertainment.