Last Summer is primarily told from the perspective of Luke (played by Samuel Pettit), who is struggling to finish up the last remaining days of summer school. He self describes as more of an athlete than an academic, a character defect that undoubtedly landed him in summer school in the first place. On the contrast, Luke’s high school boyfriend, Jonah (played by Sean Rose), is far more talented when it comes to his schoolwork, though he is not the athlete that Luke is. As Luke muddles through the waning days of summer, a difficult realization starts to settle in. Jonah will be leaving for college soon, and leaving behind Luke and their relationship.
Luke reaches the uncomfortable conclusion that many folks in rural southern towns like his have come to. Some people are very comfortable where they are and couldn’t imagine being anywhere else, whereas others are simply too big for life in a small town. It becomes abundantly clear to the two boys that Luke is much more the former and Jonah is the latter. As the lazy days of summer stretch on, Luke and Jonah decide what their next steps will be and whether or not their relationship will last beyond their high school years in their small town.
“It achieves some lovely moments and even some pointed truths about the lure and limitations of small-town life.”
— The Hollywood Reporter
“Luke and Jonah are shown to face an intimidating prospect – wanting to know what comes next in their otherwise ironclad romance. Thiedeman makes us want to know, too.”
— The Reviews
“Last Summer is a meditation on youth and the fleeting moments of love’s first kiss; it is both romantic and heartbreaking in its own way, and Thiedeman has somehow managed to capture the magical essence of summers past on film.”
— Black Sheep Reviews
Did You Know?
Written and directed by Mark Thiedeman, Last Summer is interestingly short on dialogue. Unlike most “last summer” stories, Thiedeman chose to focus more on visual storytelling than spirited teenage drama and dialogue. Using a series of long takes, he allows the scenery to breathe a little in each scene, showing key images such as baseball gloves and small businesses along main street to help the audience envision Luke and Jonah’s surroundings on their own. Additionally, Luke and Jonah speak very little, conjuring feelings of love lost even before their separation is fully apparent. Review our Gay Themed Films Here