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When another rowing team bold enough to call themselves the QueerStrokes (which actually exists) shows up, Tobi gets to see the spectrum of gay characters, from manly Malte to effeminate Nils; and Marlon Kittel as Leo sure takes in an eyeful of Tobi as he bides his time. Seeking refuge from a raging storm (and from an increasingly stormy relationship with Achim) in a closed hostel building brings some closer together, and drives others apart.
There isn't much new for American audiences in that there have been a number of equally well done coming out films here, but Summer Storm rings true because it is at least partly autobiographical for director and writer Marco Kreuzpaintner, and Stadtlober and Ullmann certainly have chemistry together to spare as mates. In fact the whole crew seemed to be having a really good time.
The film ends with Tobi arriving home from the summer rowing camp a changed boy. Stepping off the bus and facing his front door his stern look changes to a faint smile. A small touch, but a reason Robert Stadtlober has won awards, and why the film will win acclaim.
You will laugh out loud, and cry as you feel the agony Tobi endures while coming to terms with his sexuality. Tobi (played flawlessly by Robert Stadlober) is the leader of his rowing team, and looked up to by his teammates for leadership. When his team is up against another rowing team comprised of an all-gay team, his inner feelings are realized. Tobi deals with his feelings and love for his best friend Achim, and eventually deals with the complications of coming out to him. All the while dealing with confused emotions for his girlfriend and a new boy he meets on the opposing team.
The film is genuine, well-directed, well-acted and goes head-on with the painful emotions most younger people must face when trying to understand their sexuality. THIS STORY IS REAL! And proves once again that we truly cannot help who we fall in love with. Love is about following your heart - it's about people, not the sex of the individual's involved.
The movie hails from Germany, and is in German with English subtitles. Even with having to read the film to understand it, the talent of the young actors shines through.
Not only was I impressed by the story, even the movies scenes and settings were delightful. Kudos to here! Films, Genius Products and Liberation Entertainment for producing this movie. It's a shame Hollywood USA can't (or doesn't have the courage) to produce this quality and style of film.
Truly, I expected stereotypes galore. The cover of the DVD itself screams, "I'm A Gay Movie". In the opening credits, Tobi (Robert Stadlober) and Achim (Kostja Ullmann) were jumping and twisting in the air for no apparent reason, and the camera centered mostly on their crotches, showing their t-shirts as they rose above the elastic of their shorts to reveal well toned stomach muscles and hints of underwear. I thought, perhaps that's why they're jumping - to titillate. But I judged too hastily.
The film reveals its true purpose immediately: to tell a story. And we get the impression that all the skin we've seen, are seeing, and are about to see is not gratuitous, but rather that it represents the hormonal surges that the young men themselves were feeling.
We witness is Tobi and Achim in the locker rooms (boat house?) wrestling and goofing around - boys will be boys. It's noted that Tobi is aroused, and they masturbate together. Achim speaks lustily of girls, but Tobi's eyes speak only of Achim. This might be confusing to some American audiences, who would immediately assume that Achim is gay because he's doing this with another guy. Well, one of the worst kept secrets between teenage guys is that this sort of thing is not uncommon, even when both - or, indeed, all - members are straight. I say worst kept secret because straight guys never grow up and tell their wives, but gay guys grow up and tell *everybody*.
Achim has a girlfriend, who he obviously adores.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Good coming of age story, and one I related to from my own youth. Nostalgia!Published 3 months ago by khajdas
This is a great movie! It's my first foreign gay film I actually got into.Published 6 months ago by Mr G
Uncomfortable to watch people masturbating in a movie where this was not expected.Published 6 months ago by Buddy Nathaniel Carter
Good flick. Well acted. A bit hoaky in parts but had a genuine quality.Published 11 months ago by MS
This is a very endearing film about a young athlete wrestling (no pun intended) with his sexual identity while at sports camp with other teens who can be merciless to someone who... Read morePublished 11 months ago by Lost in Vegas
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