Cinema: Puberty Wrongs

Adolescence is at its most self-conscious when it tries to appear nonchalant. In Last Summer, the director-writer team of Frank and Eleanor Perry (David and Lisa, The Swimmer) attempt a casual parable of puberty rites and wrongs. Like their subjects, they too frequently mistake postures for performances and smartness for wisdom.

On a resort beach, a ripening, broad-beamed girl named Sandy (Barbara Hershey) befriends two teenagers, Peter (Richard Thomas) and Dan (Bruce Davison). The boys try to study Sandy's anatomy back in the dunes, but the explorations never go beyond the halter of her...

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