Summer Storm (Sommersturm) follows the story of a rowing team that comes to a camping area to train for a week before a major competition. The members of the RSC rowing club are eager to participate in this training camp, with the plan of being accompanied by a female rowing team from Berlin. However, at the last moment, the female rowing team cancels their plan, and are replaced by an outspoken gay and proud rowing team, the Queerschlag.
Naturally, this isn’t what the original group of boys was hoping for, and tensions grow thick between the teams. Tobi (Robert Stadlober), of the original team, is forced into a dilemma where he has to face his feelings for fellow teammate Achim (Kostja Ullmann), who has a girlfriend already. Tobi makes an advance, but is rebuffed by Achim, leaving Tobi emotionally bruised, only to be consoled by a member of Queerschlag, Leo.
The tensions between the teams come to a head against the backdrop of a summer storm, and Leo challenges Tobi to come out of the closet, in front of his teammates. Although Tobi initially tries to deny it, he finds that he has no choice but to tell the truth, and is then surprised to find out that his teammates actually don’t really care, and in fact support him, and work together as never before to prepare for the final regatta.
“An observant and sensitively played drama about adolescent sexuality, unrequited love and heartbreak.”
— TV Guide
“Kreuzpaintner displays a natural gift with actors and a clarity in storytelling that result in a fresh take on what otherwise might have been a familiar coming-of-age story.”
— Los Angeles Times
“A lovely wallow in the sweaty pains and joys of mostly gay adolescent love.”
— L.A. Weekly
Did You Know?
Summer Storm (Sommersturm) was an unusual film as the cast and crew were quite large, yet there wasn’t even a single person over the age of 30 involved in its production. Director Marco Kreuzpaintner has said that he originally wanted to have all unknowns cast in the film, but later decided that the lead role would only work with an experienced actor. The themes of the film are also based largely off of the director’s own experiences as an altar boy. Review our Gay Themed Films Here