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Movie Review: Summer of '84

Updated on July 25, 2019
Davey Armstrong (Graham Verchere) tries to convince his friends that he saw this missing boy in his neighbor's house
Davey Armstrong (Graham Verchere) tries to convince his friends that he saw this missing boy in his neighbor's house

What would you do if you thought your next door neighbor was a serial killer? Would you spy on them and what if you were wrong?

This is the question four childhood friends deal with in the Summer of '84 as they try to figure out if their neighbor, Wayne Mackey (Rich Sommer) is indeed responsible for the recent disappearances of young boys. The clincher though is Mackey is a local police officer, so surely he's innocent, right?

One night while playing Manhunt, Davey (Graham Verchere) sees a boy in Mackey's house and later when the boy's picture appears on a milk carton, he tries to convince his friends Eats (Judah Lewis), Woody (Caleb Emery) and Curtis (Cory Gruter-Andrew) that the boy was in Mackey's house. They all tell him that he's crazy since they've known Mackey all of their lives and since he's a cop, why would he be doing such a thing.

Davey argues his point and then they start to watch Mackey's every move from morning until the time he gets home from work.

The boys start to come up with evidence against Mackey, but they can't confirm anything until they do a stake out. Their investigating Mackey is also a distraction from their home lives, which aren't perfect and the four of them begin to form an even bigger bond.

While they're only investigating amongst themselves, their concerns begin to grow when their neighbors haven't been seen in awhile. Davey is convinced that Mackey has something to do with their disappearance and the boys break into the house. There they find their older neighbor Nikki (Tiera Skovbye) taking care of the cats.

She assures them that the family rented a camper and left a few weeks ago and the boys let it slip about their investigation against Mackey. Nikki thinks it's a pretty funny story, but, boys will be boys.

When the boys are discovered at what they've been doing, things begin to get dangerous for everyone involved and the Summer of '84 will go down in history.

If you're looking for an edge of your seat thriller, this isn't that type of movie, however, there are a lot of twists and turns throughout I'd say the last half. I'm not sure at which point things start to subtly change, but you will be going back to watch it again.

On a first viewing, you may not like the movie since it's not that edge of your seat type of thriller, but during the last act it makes up for lost time. It's fast paced and really edge of the seat excitement.

This is what I was hoping for in the beginning, but, after a few times of watching this movie, I'm starting to pick up on the things that I've missed.

The performances are great and I like anything set in the '80's (and for some reason, everyone seems to think that the real summer of 1984 was the best in the decade) but unfortunately, I don't remember it.

Now if this were set in 1985 it would be a different story.


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