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Summertime: French cinema’s love letter to feminism


If you feel like escaping the British summer with all its rain and political ill will, new film Summertime is the perfect antidote. Set in Seventies Paris you’re ushered into a world where young feminists are passionate, politicised and fun.

It’s into this group that Delphine (IzÏa Higelin) falls when she moves from her parents’ farm to the city. A closeted lesbian, Delphine finds herself liberated in the capital. She falls for Carole (Cécile de France, nominated for a Best Actress César for her role), who surprises herself (and her boyfriend) when the feelings are mutual. So begins an affair which, after Delphine’s father falls ill, moves to the countryside in south-central France. But summer only lasts so long and soon Delphine must confront her demons and her mother, who realises what’s going on.

The film invites comparison to 2013’s Blue Is The Warmest Colour, but in Summertime the sex is unabashed and not exploitative. Director Catherine Corsini wanted the film to be a tribute to feminists and succeeds in painting a rounder, human picture of a political movement. As such, Summertime is a bright spot in a summer of discontent.

Summertime is in cinemas nationwide from 15 July


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