Summertime

Nominee
NEXT Innovator Award
Sundance Film Festival
Shift[s] the focus to the unheard and unseen for a wonderful reinvention. You'll never see L.A. the same again.

NOW PLAYING

Summertime

Over the course of a hot summer day in Los Angeles, the lives of 27 young Angelenos intersect. A skating guitarist, a tagger, two wannabe rappers, an exasperated fast-food worker, a limo driver—they all weave in and out of each other’s stories. Through poetry they express life, love, heartache, family, home, and fear. One of them just wants to find someplace that still serves good cheeseburgers. 

Inspired by a spoken-word showcase featuring 25 diverse high school performers, Carlos López Estrada (
Blindspotting, Raya and the Last Dragon) proposed a collaboration to develop the performers’ work into a loose, interconnected narrative, encouraging the non-actors to express themselves and their relationship to their city.

With its
Slacker-inspired structure, fanciful form, and exuberant magical realism, Summertime is a free verse poem—of the kids, by the kids, for the kids. The young poets radiate vitality, honesty, and profound emotion. By the time they wind up together in a tricked-out mega-limo overlooking the city, we believe in what their crazy, creative togetherness represents: hope. As the driver says, “Y’all got a pocket full of dreams, so don’t let me down.”
R
Genre
Comedy, Drama, Music, Los Angeles, African-American Experience, Poetry
Runtime
95
Language
English
Director
Carlos López Estrada
Writer(s)
Dave Harris, The Summertime Poets
Cast
Tyris Winter, Marquesha Babers, Maia Mayor, Austin Antoine, Bryce Banks, Amaya Blankenship, Bene't Benton, Gordon Ip, Jason Alvarez
Awards:
Nominee, NEXT Innovator Award, Sundance Film Festival
FEATURED REVIEW
Nick Allen, RogerEbert.com

After making his directorial debut two years ago with the film “Blindspotting,” director Carlos López Estrada returns to Sundance in the “Next” category, a category usually saved for filmmakers who have not yet received the kind of attention Estrada already has. And yet it’s a fitting classification ...

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