"Summer 1993"

It may seem odd that I find difficult to defend a movie which I like and death easy to say what I do not like about a film which I do not like because what we like is usually easier to defend. But whenever I see a movie that excites me, my ideas about it mix in my head. I can not just say fluently the reasons for my cinematic ecstasy. There are some movies that make me speechless. I say this because Summer 1993 is one of those films that has fascinated me to the point that it has made me lose control. Not only because of it resounding triumph at festivals (I have seen it during the BFI Film Festival in London) fed even more with the myth.  Every sequence, every dialogue, each plan is an absolute success, a declaration of love to the cinema and, above all, a great story told in style.

Carla Simón debut film Summer 1993 with an autobiographical story about a child, Frida, who has to go to live with her uncles and her cousin in a town of La Garrotxa, Spain, after the death of her mother. Through her eyes, to which the director never loses sight, we enter into the summer universe of a kid who does not understand what happens. Everything is explained from her point of view. The adult world is shown as a distant thing, with conversations that take place in half-voice, measuring the words to shut up just in the precise moment when Frida seems to understand what could be happening.

David Verdaguer, Bruna Cusí, Paula Robles and Bruna Cusi

David Verdaguer, Bruna Cusí, Paula Robles and Bruna Cusi

Summer 1993 is one of the best film that reach the cinemas in a long time. Dazzling and magical, it is able to reach much inside us and infect its painful sweetness. The most appreciated effort in the film is the work with the actors. Little Laia debuts with an incredible performance, full of shades that surprise for her young age. And it improves whenever it is accompanied by Paula, with whom she achieves a sweet and largely realistic duet. Together with Bruna Cusí (Uncertain Glory) and David Verdaguer they complete a family that is surprising to be fiction, revealing an incredible rehearsal work.

The film does not scare itself to go from cruelty to sweetness with a surprising speed, mixing really hard moments with other comedians. Everything is under the direction of Carla Simón, fairy tale type and a vivid and enjoyable chromatic look. Without great artifice or ostentation, Summer 1993 manages to sneak into the heart of the public thanks to the sincerity with which Carla shows a subject that is not only hard but also autobiographical. Perhaps because of this almost anecdotal way in which it tell things, as if it did not want to scare us, the story begins to ferment in the head once the cinema lights are lit. And believe me, it may be harder to get away from it than from a gum stuck to a shoe.

There are many sequences of Summer 1993 that will carry us in time. The brave director chose to share a piece of her life, perhaps without being aware that she would also go deeply into our memories. And although in 1993 I had not been born, when finishing the film I had the feeling of ending living the whole year.

Carla Simon

Carla Simon