Summer of Sam
Summer of Sam (1999)

New York City's infamous summer of 1977 was a scene of disco divas and the culture clash between fashionable patrons of Studio 54 and the new wave of punk rockers who invaded Manhattan. It was also one of the hottest summers on record… More

Directed By:
Rated: R
Running Time:
Release Date: July 2, 1999
DVD Release Date: August 28, 2001
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Critic Score: 51% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews

Consensus: Spike Lee offers intense visuals but his storytelling feels crowded and overambitious.

Jonathan Rosenbaum
Chicago Reader

Like most of Lee's work, this bites off more than it can chew, but the breadth and energy are impressive.

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Liam Lacey
Globe and Mail

The disappointment with Summer of Sam is not that it's exploitative; it's just difficult to figure out what it's supposed to be about.

Henry Stewart
Brooklyn Magazine

A deliberately overblown MEAN STREETS parody

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Andrew Sarris
New York Observer

This is trashy exploitation at its clumsiest. Once more, a Spike Lee movie has been undone by the earnestness of being important.

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Kenneth Turan
Los Angeles Times

Lee is a powerful filmmaker who certainly knows how to have an impact on an audience, but those who survive his ministrations are likely to wonder if in this case the battle was worth the bruises.

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This ultimately disappoints, but it is good to see Lee branch out into subjects which don't immediately lend themselves to his single-minded politicizing.

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Geoff Andrew
Time Out

Trouble is, the overlong narrative, however entertaining from minute to minute, is a mess.

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Susan Stark
Detroit News

Summer of Sam scatters most of its force by straying far from the compelling, plenty-complex business at hand.

Jim Lane
Sacramento News & Review

The film is sloppy and ill-formed, its tone lurching drunkenly from turgid soap opera to soft-core porn, descending at times to low camp.

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More reviews for Summer of Sam

Flixster Audience Score: 60% Flixster User Reviews
Matthew Samuel Mirliani
A thrilling, often bizarre film, Summer of Sam is a bigger triumph than its general critical reception would make it seem due to a great ensemble and a strong… More
Christopher Heim
On a scene by scene basis this film is alright, but it is a mess when taken as a whole. It's like the filmmakers came in with twenty ideas and a clumsy… More
Alex roy
I am usually one to dislike Spike Lee's work due to his knack for starting fights and complaining about more talented directors. Even I can admit however… More
Conner Rainwater
Probably one of Spike Lee's best movies. The story is so engaging and powerful. It touches on so many subjects of the time regarding race, creed, gender,… More
Emily Armstrong
Know what? I bet that Spike Lee would make a really brilliant zombie movie. He really excels at crafting stories about groups of characters caught in… More
Aaron Neuwirth
Ritchie: All right. What do you want me to tell you? Get a fuckin' divorce, then. Vinny: Divorce is fuckin' evil, Ritchie. You got some fuckin'… More

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