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Summer Hours

2008 Drama

Three siblings must come to terms with their mother's mortality as they decide what to do with her valuable belongings in this warm family drama from filmmaker Olivier Assayas. Hélène Berthier (Edith Scob) is about to turn 75, and her children are gathering at her home in the country for a party. Adrienne (Juliette Binoche) has flown in from New York City, where she lives with her boyfriend, James (Kyle Eastwood). Jérémie (Jérémie Renier) has taken a rare break from his globe-trotting business interests to stop by with his wife (Valérie Bonneton). And Frédéric (Charles Berling), the only one who lives close enough to visit regularly, has also come with his spouse, Lisa (Dominique Reymond). Hélène has inherited a large and valuable collection of art from her brother, and with her health beginning to fail, she approaches Frédéric and asks that he, Jérémie, and Adrienne come up with a plan to deal with the pieces after her death. Frédéric wants to keep the collection together and see if they can persuade a gallery to purchase and present them as a set. Jérémie and Adrienne have other ideas, but as he's pondering a business opportunity in China and she's planning on settling in America for good, they don't have as much influence over the final decision as Frédéric. L'Heure d' more..

Director: Olivier Assayas

Starring: Charles Berling, Juliette Binoche, Jeremie Renier, Dominique Reymond, Edith Scob

Reviews

  • In spite of its modest scale, tactful manner and potentially dowdy subject matter, is packed nearly to bursting with rich meaning and deep implication.

    A.O. Scott - The New York Times

    19 January 2013

  • Brims with life and loveliness even as it meditates on the loss of childhood.

    Lisa Schwarzbaum - Entertainment Weekly

    19 January 2013

  • French films traditionally take France and its eternal appeal for granted. Summer Hours is the rare film that worries about that, worries about the future, and that proves to be invaluable.

    Kenneth Turan - Los Angeles Times

    19 January 2013

  • Writer-director Olivier Assayas crafts a near perfect blend of humor and heartbreak, a lyrical masterwork that measures loss in terms practical and evanescent.

    Peter Travers - Rolling Stone

    19 January 2013

  • Much of Summer Hours, which was shot by the excellent Eric Gautier, feels like a Chekhov play and resonates like a Schubert quartet; itâ??s a work of singular loveliness.

    Joe Morgenstern - The Wall Street Journal

    19 January 2013

Awards

  • Best Foreign Language Film

    Boston Society of Film Critics Awards (2009)

  • Best Foreign Language Film

    Central Ohio Film Critics Association (2010)

  • Best Foreign Language Film

    Chicago Film Critics Association Awards (2009)

     
  • Best Ensemble Cast

    Chlotrudis Awards (2010)

     
  • Best Supporting Actress (Meilleure actrice dans un second rôle)

    César Awards, France (2009)