Summer of '42


Summer of '42 (1971)



Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.


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Movie Info

In this irresistible coming-of-age piece, director Robert Mulligan narrates the film as the grown-up counterpart of Hermie, a teenager of the War Years who has a crush on twentyish Jennifer O'Neill. With O'Neill's soldier husband off to war, Grimes convinces himself that he can take hubby's place in every way.

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Critic Reviews for Summer of '42

All Critics (22) | Top Critics (4)

Summer of '42 has a large amount of charm and tenderness; it also has little dramatic economy and much eye-exhausting photography which translates to forced and artificial emphasis on a strungout story.

Mar 26, 2009 | Full Review…
Top Critic

It forever misses, unlike American Graffiti, the heady sexual climate of adolescence to concentrate on the circumstances of the sex act itself.

Jun 24, 2006 | Full Review…
Time Out
Top Critic

"Summer of '42" is a memory movie, written, directed and acted with such uncommon good humor that I don't think you'll be put off by its sweet soft-focus, at least until you start analyzing it afterwards.

May 9, 2005 | Rating: 3/5

Nostalgia is used as a distancing device -- to keep us safely insulated from the boy's immediate grief, love, and passion.

Oct 23, 2004 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…

People who actually recall 1942 will more greatly appreciate the waves of nostalgia that bathe this affectionate coming-of-age drama, set on a tiny island off New England.

Jun 9, 2011 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

Visually lyrical film romance also has problems with dubious views on teen sexuality.

Jan 4, 2011 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Summer of '42


A deliberately tender and sentimental coming of age tale wherein a young man is given his longed for first experience with sex, only under dark and tragic circumstances. Together with this, in this incredibly spare tale, is a nostalgic longing for what innocence there might have been in America in the time before WWll. That and a simple soundtrack by Michel Legrand translate what might've been tacky into a pretty decent Hallmark card from the home front circa 1942.

Kevin M. Williams
Kevin M. Williams

Super Reviewer

Very good romance :)

Cassie Hill
Cassie Hill

Super Reviewer


Sorry, but I couldn't help but laugh. It was such a different time... WOW!

Leigh Ryan
Leigh Ryan

Super Reviewer

Good film.

Leo L
Leo L

Super Reviewer

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