One Deadly Summer (L'Eté Meurtrier) in August
Nouveaux Pictures have announced the UK Region 2 DVD release of One Deadly Summer (L'Eté Meurtrier) for 23rd August 2004 priced at £15.99. Jean Becker's One Deadly Summer is a gripping, psychological thriller – a story of sex and obsession amidst the beautiful Provence countryside – with Isabelle Adjani (Diabolique; La Reine Margot) giving an award winning, career defining performance as the manipulative and cunning Elle.
It is high summer in the south of France and one family's peace is about to be disturbed by Elle (Isabelle Adjani), a young woman with revenge on her mind. Elle is a beautiful, moody and unsettlingly provocative 19-year-old, who returns to the quiet Provence village of her birth to look after her crippled father and German mother.
Initially, her arousing presence enlivens the usually staid village, captivating the young men – one, Pin Pon (Alain Souchon), in particular. But as Elle gradually becomes a part of village life, a more sinister motive for her homecoming begins to emerge. Elle is obsessed by the violent rape of her mother back in 1955, the very incident that spawned her. In the barn owned by Pin Pon's family stands the barrel organ that played "Roses of Picardy" during the rape. Elle schemes to entrap Pin Pon into marrying her, in order to get close to his family's bosom. She wants to settle the score and Pin Pon and his family are her intended victims. Moving in with Pin Pon's family, Elle traps the innocent dupe into marrying her with a phantom pregnancy. Switching from child-like vulnerability to wanton maliciousness she deftly turns friend against friend, brother against brother, as the film moves to its violent climax.
Adapted by Sebastien Japrisot from his own novel, this intricate psychosexual mystery is a disturbing tale of mental derangement. The winner of four César Awards (the French equivalent of the Oscars), including Best Actress (Isabelle Adjani), One Deadly Summer is one of the finest and most memorable French films of the 1980s.