Carla Simón’s ‘Summer 1993’ is a Moving, Understated Drama About Youth and Grief

GameStop, Inc.

Summer 1993

Even years of life on this cruel, indifferent orb known as Earth can’t prepare you for the all-encompassing sense of grief that strikes one after the death of a loved one. That tragic sense of loss can’t compare to how a child must feel when they’ve lost a parent, and that’s the central idea behind writer-director Carla Simón’s semi-autobiographical drama Summer 1993. Based upon her own youth, Summer 1993 is a quiet, tender character study focused on its young protagonist, her youthful existence in a state of flux following the death of her mother.

When we first see six-year-old Frida (Laia Artigas), the young child is packing up the last of her posessions at her mother’s house in Barcelona. The young child had just lost her mother and father to AIDS and is now traveling to the countryside with her aunt Marga (Bruna Cusí) and uncle Esteve (David Verdaguer) along with their young daughter Anna (Paula Robles). In her new household in the countryside of Catalan, Frida explores the wooded area surrounding her new home, often with Anna by her side.

As the film progresses, it’s the little moments that bring Summer 1993 to life, such as Frida accompanying her aunt to the butcher’s shop and the cause of her mother’s demise being the casually shared gossip as the meat gets sliced. None of this seems to faze young Frida too much, as the carefree nature of youth means she hasn’t quite fully processed what has happened to her parents. Simón’s film strikes a deft balance between capturing a transition through the eyes of its child lead while still presented the difficult task of the adoptive parents, and how this new member to the family creates an adjustment period for them as well.

What sticks out about Summer 1993 is its understated nature. It’s a quiet, almost passive look at grief through the eyes of youth full of low-key moments. There are few big dramatic moments that would play in the awards show reel, which means that its quiet sense to its themes of loss are all the more heartbreaking because they’re running under the surface of the characters. The two young leads anchor the film as its characters traverse a new, unknown terrain in their young lives. The adults have to navigate this fraught territory with ease, somehow respecting the loss that grips young Frida while also establishing boundaries on their niece.

Just when you think Summer 1993 might be a minor but affecting drama about loss and youth, Carla Simón save a heart-wrenching gut punch for the film’s final shot. To explain what happens would constitute a spoiler of the highest level, but it’s safe to say that it’s a chilling, memorable final moment that will stick with you well beyond the end credits of Summer 1993. In her feature film debut, Carla Simón crafts a smart, moving drama that captures the innocence of youth and heartache left behind by death.

Summer 1993
  • Overall Score
3.5

Summary

A moving, understated drama about youth and grief, Carla Simón’s Summer 1993 deftly balances the perspective of the children and adults forced to go through massive life changes in the wake of an untimely death.

Anytime Costumes

Leave a Reply

Animation/Anime Interviews Animation/Anime News Animation/Anime Reviews Film/TV Interviews Film/TV News Film/TV Review
The Mandalorian Chapter 1 Review
The Armor ACTUALLY Works! – The Mandalorian Chapter 1 Review

The Star Wars Universe is finally delving into the dark side… or...

Hollywood Up-and-Comer, Wren Barnes Talks About Her Budding Career

You might not know her name yet, but Wren Barnes is...

Alex Ardenti Documents Dietary Supplement in ‘Supps: The Movie’

Italian fitness photographer, filmmaker and bodybuilding expert, Alex Ardenti has taken...

Event News Event Reviews
Adam Rocha Celebrates the Silver Anniversary of the San Antonio Film Festival

The San Antonio Film Festival (SAFilm) is celebrating 25 years of ...

Legion M President, Jeff Annison Talks about All the SDCC 2019 Festivities

Legion M is the only fan owned film studio that brings...

Viz Media SDCC 2019: Seis Manos and more!

Announced earlier this year (click here), Seis Manos is an upcoming...

Enabled Gaming Gaming News Gaming Reviews
Yu-Gi-Oh! TCG Legendary Duelists Magical Hero Will Open 2020

Dark Magicians are getting new tricks in Legendary Duelists Magical Hero coming...

John Wick Hex
Create the Legend of John Wick in John Wick Hex

Create the Legend of John Wix and be John Wix before...

Battle for the Grid Season 2
Power Rangers: Battle for the Grid Season 2 Now Available on Consoles

Power Rangers: Battle for the Grid Season 2 now available on...

Comic Creator Interviews Comic/Graphic Novel News Comic/Graphic Novel Reviews Manga News Manga Reviews Novel/Novella Author Interviews Novel/Novella News Novel/Novella Reviews
David Dastmalchian Teams Up with Dark Horse for ‘Count Crowley’ – Interview

Actor David Dastmalchian is the embodiment of turning one’s life around....

Neon Future Interview with Founder & Writer

A few months ago at WonderCon 2019, I had the honor...

Blue Bastion
Help Bring the World of Blue Bastion to Life

Live now on Indiegogo, help bring the rich and wondrous world...

Apparel/Personal Maintenance News Apparel/Personal Maintenance Reviews Entertainment Product News Entertainment Product Reviews Food/Beverage Reviews Hardware News Hardware Reviews Mystery Box News Mystery Box Reviews
LS50X Snoop Dogg Limited-Edition Headset
LucidSound Announces LS50X Snoop Dogg Limited-Edition Headset Pre-Order

LucidSound announces LS50X Snoop Dogg Limited-Edition headset pre-order opening November 19...

Sparkling Ice +Caffeine
The Ultimate Hydration for Gamers – Sparkling Ice +Caffeine Review

Sparkling Ice +Caffeine is the perfect blend of taste, hydration, and...

Blue Yeti Nano Microphone Review

We have been playing with the Blue Yeti Nano for a...

Arena Football Automotives MMA, Kick Boxing & Boxing Professional Wrestling
Ken Shamrock Shows His ‘Valor’ With VBK 1 This Fall

The Most Dangerous Man in the World, Ken Shamrock is a...

‘Pitbull’ vs. Archuleta and Machida vs. Mousasi Headline Bellator’s Return to L.A. on Sept. 28

  LOS ANGELES – The opening round of the Bellator Featherweight World...

UFC Featherweight Contender, Brian Ortega Talks about Health and Recovery

Brian Ortega is one of the baddest fighters in the UFC....

Adult Continuity Comics on the Can Cultural Junk Drawer Future Comic Rock Stars Is That Racist? Revisiting the Reviled THAT'S NOT ROTTEN! The B-Reel The Cantina Scene This Week in Crowdfunding What the HELL Did I just...?
Fantoy Comics Presents: After the Aftermath!

The search for a defense against the dark arts teacher begins...

Fantoy Comics Presents: Harry Potter and the Emissary of Death: Aftermath – The final chapter…I think.

Wizards use UBER

Fantoy Comics Presents: Harry Potter and the Emissary of Death: Aftermath! Almost the final cut!

Voldemort doesn't get it.

Gaming Uncensored Toon-In-Talk
Episode 34: Chris Prynoski

Whitney Grace is digging through her queue of old new stock...

Episode 33: Jerry Beck

Join Whitney Grace in this blast down memory lane with an...

Episode 32: Mathew Klickstein

I’m back and done explaining about the current state of my...

Music Interviews Music News Music Reviews
Comedy Duo Ben Giroux and Jensen Reed Take Us, ‘Back To The 80s’

Two of the funniest men in show business, Ben Giroux (Hart...

James Maslow ‘Rush’es the Stage to Perform at Super Girl Surf Pro on Sunday

James Maslow is an American singer, actor and songwriter best known as the star of...

Jason Lazarus Talks about Composing the Music for ‘Teen Titans Go! vs Teen Titans’

Jason Lazarus is a Los Angeles based composer for film, television, and...