Summer of '42 | Chicago Reader

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Gary Grimes is the shy, uncertain teenager who receives his sexual initiation from a beautiful, grief-stricken war widow (Jennifer O'Neill). Director Robert Mulligan (To Kill a Mockingbird) brings all of his considerable gifts for atmosphere and lyrical emotionality to bear on Herman Raucher's screenplay, though the qualities of the film have been obscured by the many imitations it inspired. Perhaps too simple and damply nostalgic to rank with Mulligan's best work, but still illuminated by an intense identification with adolescent confusion, beautifully communicated by Mulligan's subjective camera technique. With Jerry Houser and Oliver Conant (1971). 103 min.

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