In the Summer of 1993, Frida, a six-year-old little girl, leaves Barcelona and her grandparents for the countryside. After her father, her mother has just died of a mysterious illness. Taken in by her uncle Esteve and aunt Marga, Frida discovers her new environment, an old stone farmhouse in a mountainous area close to a dense forest. Her new "parents" prove friendly. Another good point is that they have a three-year old daughter named Anna who can become a playmate. For another child less disturbed than miserable uprooted Frida, this would be the most idyllic of stays, in other words a permanent vacation. But Frida IS disturbed and if there are undeniably good times at her new "home", there is also the unexpressed pain which makes her both feel sad and behave badly. Will Frida overcome her troubles ? Only the end of Summer will tell.Written by
Carla Simon's well-observed tale of a young girl who's orphaned and forced to move into her uncle's home. Frida (Laia Artigas ) is the girl and her uncle Esteve (David Verdaguer) has a wife Marga (Bruna Cusi) and an even younger daughter Anna (Paula Robles).
Frida's mother's passing of an "illness" isn't defined at the outset, but, the constant medical tests the young girl has to be subjected to and the panic that ensues when she bleeds on a playground give you a pretty good idea of what will be revealed (not to mention setting it 25 years ago). But, SUMMER 1993 isn't really about that topic, it's more about coping without parents, and trying to blend in with her uncle's family. It's often awkward, and even painful, but it's never less than perceptive even if it never quite reaches the next level. The movie's path never seems in doubt, no matter the obstacles put in the characters' way. The music selections are interesting and unexpected with touches of soulful jazz. The ending concludes on a different note than one might forsee - but, it's just about right.
This was Spain's official submission for the Foreign Language Oscar last year (it was not nominated or short-listed).
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