“You can’t hold on to everything.”
SYNOPSIS: In the summer of 1991, a sheltered teenage boy comes of age during a wild summer he spends in Cape Cod getting rich from selling pot to gangsters, falling in love for the first time, partying and eventually realizing that he is in over his head. – via IMDB
So I moved this up on my watch list because I adore Timothée Chalamet and I also thoroughly enjoy Maika Monroe, so the talent alone had me like “hells yeah” on this. I had no preconceived ideas about Hot Summer Nights, I remember reading about it before it came and thinking to add it to my watch list because I liked the cast, and A24 has churned out some pretty good movies over the years, then I kind of forgot about it. But then I saw it again and I was like “oh yeah!”.
Hot Summer Nights is a mixed bag. It’s carried by amazing performances from the cast, and it looks great – the outfits of the time, the stylish way it’s shot, the colours, everything on that front works for it. I even like the soundtrack, though at times it just felt like someone wanted to cram as much nostalgic/relevant music of the time to set the scene, which sometimes kinda just dragged you out of the whole affair sometimes? Chalamet was (as expected), fantastic. Honestly. Maika Monroe, too, impressed me (as always), and the two of them just looked gorgeous together. Alex Roe (a newcomer for me) was solid, too. He doesn’t have the most extensive filmography and I am not sure why, I thought he was rather good. I really liked them all, and watching them all.
Where the movie is let down is the paper thin story. For reals. It could have been so much more, weaving a coming of age story into this summer and seeing how it would all come together. But that opportunity was wasted. Also, these guys grow their pot sales empire, but never really addresses the how. We are told it is happening, we see the money, but we don’t get anything more than that. It just leaves holes and questions. Thomas Jane, too, is underused in this.
Anyway, Hot Summer Nights is a decent watch. The performances alone are worth a look see, and it’s not a terrible movie. It just doesn’t have an awful lot of substance to it at the end of the day. Not your typical coming of age movie, but I liked it enough.