The Kings of Summer Reviews
"The Kings of Summer" is a coming of age story that follows three friends, whom on their own free will, decide to build a house in the middle of the woods to use as an escape from their hectic lives. Through this crazy idea, friendships will be solidified and relationships will be tested, but it's a feel good movie that will make you smile throughout.
A small budget, limited release film released in 2013, "The Kings of Summer" is one of the best coming of age stories of the year. I want to say that the thing I love the most is the simplicity of the movie. It knows exactly what it is, and yet it doesn't over exaggerate it's premise. I really do love the premise of the film, and it executes in an efficient manner, leaving little to be desired by the time the credits rolled. It's a fulfilling movie, as puzzling as its story is, but manages to make you leave the theater smiling.
The actors make the movie feel fun, even if the supporting cast is overly cartoony at times. The main trio here is gold, as Nick Robinson does a good job leading the film. Gabriel Basso and Moises Arias are great supporting actors, and Nick Offerman fills in the parent role very nicely. My favorite one is definitely Moises Arias, who was one of the standouts. Although his character isn't the most original character ever created, he manages to blend the tone of comedy within the movie and provide plenty of comedic moments. Some of the other supporting characters were often made out to be overly cartoonish, which means they were often over exaggerated within their roles and felt a little too fake. I understand that it had to fit in with the tone of the film, but it often made things a bit awkward.
The pacing was also suitable, as the movie manages to keep its run time short. At around an hour and 30 minutes, this film moves along nicely, and doesn't waste to much time on unnecessary plot points and moments. It puts forth an effort to keep the story moving along, even at the expense of clearing up some misconception in certain moments. For the most part, I was fine with that, as it often let you decipher the deeper meaning for yourself.
The movie also did a great job with its camerawork and the directing. They constantly used nature as their background, and never resorted to awkward shots. The movie looked great and the director knew the exact tone of the film. The budget was utilized to the max, and it's often a common attribute in intelligent, small productions.
The movie also had a great amount of comedy that had me chuckling. None of the comedy relied on toilet humor, and even when the jokes seemingly got out of hand, they addressed the situation and made sure they knew what kind of jokes they were writing. They were able to maintain the situation, and were able to make you laugh along with them. There were plenty of moments I will remember in this movie, and I can say I had some solid laughs throughout.
In the end, "The Kings of Summer" will have you smiling and laughing, while providing some thoughtful writing and a great direction. I actually loved watching this movie, and it's probably one of the most underrated indie films of 2013. I highly recommend this to anyone, especially those who just need to smile a little bit, or a lot.
The film is excellently paced; and the quiet "indie" moments are done very well. You get the sense that something is happening even while everyone is silent, looking at each other, with no music in the background. Better yet, YOU KNOW what is happening, what each kid is thinking.
Kings Of Summer isn't sappy at all, nor is it depressing or go-lucky. Its a very honest, plausible movie that doesn't aim higher than it can reach, and that makes it a minority in the genre. Finally, we have an indie-teen drama that doesn't reach for an audience by employing the same pretentious cliches that its peers did.
"The Kings of Summer" is an evocative coming of age movie that makes a convincing argument for teenagers needing their freedom. At the same time, there is a good cast on hand, especially the adults(I think I might be finally warming up to Nick Offerman) who do not overshadow any of the youngsters. It is also so well photographed that the slow motion interludes are not annoying. But as satisfying as the movie is emotionally, it does not quite work as well on a physical level.