L'Été meurtrier (One Deadly Summer) (1983)

L'Été meurtrier (One Deadly Summer)


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Movie Info

In this tragic tale of misunderstanding, obsession, and increasing madness, "she," a beautiful young woman (Isabelle Adjani) settles into a small town in the south of France with her introverted mother (Maria Machado) and physically handicapped father and soon becomes the subject of wild speculation because of her aloofness and at the same time, her obvious sexuality. The young woman is actually caught up in the desire to avenge the long-ago rape of her mother, a rape committed by three Italian … More

Rating: R
Genre: Drama, Art House & International, Mystery & Suspense
Directed By:
Written By: Sébastien Japrisot, Jean Becker
In Theaters:
On DVD: May 11, 2010



as Elaine/Elle

as Cognata

as Pin Pon's Mother

as Gabriel

as Boubou

as Elle's Mother

as Rostallan

as Henry IV (nickname)

as Calamite

as Ferraldo

as Leballech

as Lady Doctor

as Elle as a Child

as Brochard

as Touret
Show More Cast

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Critic Reviews for L'Été meurtrier (One Deadly Summer)

All Critics (6) | Top Critics (3)

Full Review… | March 26, 2009
Top Critic

Full Review… | January 26, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

Full Review… | August 30, 2004
New York Times
Top Critic

It is difficult to feel sympathetic to someone so bent on getting revenge.

Full Review… | January 12, 2004
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

July 16, 2005

Full Review… | May 24, 2003

Audience Reviews for L'Été meurtrier (One Deadly Summer)


An interesting character study that benefits from a strong performance by Adjani as a beautiful young woman bent on revenge. Even so, the story is not only greater due to a predictable ending that you can see coming halfway through the film.

Carlos Magalhães

Super Reviewer

A fairly decent adaptation of a good psychological thriller by Sébastien Japrisot, scripted by the author himself. The trouble with it is, the book's greatest strengths - the richly detailed provincial French setting and the vivid characterisation, resulting from a multiple first-person narrative - prove difficult to translate to the screen, at least within the constraints of a sensible running time. The movie, therefore, somehow manages to feel simultaneously watered-down and overlong. Japrisot attempts to preserve his first-person narrative in voiceover form, but he overuses this device considerably; I've nothing against voiceovers per se, but cinema should primarily be about visual storytelling, and any movie this reliant on narration must be doing something wrong!

Switching from coquettish sexiness to childlike vulnerability in the blink of an eye, Isabelle Adjani is marvellous in the lead role, but try to imagine the film without her and it begins to look very ordinary indeed. The rest of the cast are fine, though strictly two-dimensional. Jean Becker's direction is adequate but completely lacking in tension; a first-rate director - say, Claude Chabrol in his prime - would have made more of the psychosexual strangeness of the tale, and would have better disguised the fact that the nicely ironic ending hinges on a pretty indigestible coincidence. My advice: read the book; if you like it, watch this for Adjani.

Stephen M

Super Reviewer

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