Variety called summertime the most inspirational movie this year. The drama/comedy directed and produced by Carlos Lopez Estrada releases at the Zeitgeist NOLA starting today, July 16th.
Hailed as a Sundance favorite, SUMMERTIME is a unique, spoken word poetry musical. What’s even better, all the pieces in the movie were written and performed by the artists themselves. It’s an homage to the young creative and a declaration of hope and perseverance.
The director’s ground-breaking vision began at a poetry showcase where performers from across the City of Angels recited fearlessly personal texts about themselves, their communities, and their relationship to their city. The project was then developed around their poems and interwoven into a unified and gloriously moving narrative. It’s part contemporary musical and part sociological art.
SUMMERTIME explores themes of identity, community, and intersectionality through the unique perspectives of this diverse ensemble.
All the poets are also members of the GetLit program, a nonprofit organization based out of Los Angeles that serves underrepresented youth by promoting literacy through spoken word poetry.
Director and producer Carlos López Estrada’s background includes Raya and the Last Dragon (2021), Blindspotting (2018), and Legion (2017). Executive producer Kelly Marie Tran also worked on Raya and the Last Dragon in addition to Star Wars.
Estrada also documented his journey of discovering the poets and creating his film in a web series titled “The Road to Summertime.”
The film takes place over the course of a hot summer day in Los Angeles, where the lives of 25 young Angelenos intersect. A skating guitarist, a tagger, two wannabe rappers, an exasperated fast-food worker, a limo driver — they all weave in and out of each other’s stories. Through poetry, they express life, love, heartache, family, home, and fear.
You can catch the flick at the Zeitgeist Multi-Disciplinary Arts Center, located on 6621 St. Claude Ave. SUMMERTIME will be playing nightly at 7:30 pm from July 16 – 22.
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featured images via Blue Integrated Communications