"Best Summer Ever” is a musical film directed by Michael Parks Randa & Lauren Smitelli. The musical starts off with a sweet summer camp love story that unexpectedly intertwines with high school drama, an illegal secret, and a quintessential teen identity crisis.
The appeal of this film is found its intention to challenge the predictable, limiting representations of disability on-screen by entirely excluding disability from the plot. As the majority of the cast and crew have a mental or physical disability, it was important for the creators of the film to showcase an authentic representation of disability.
As Calum Marsh, critic for the New York Times, recalls “The effect of this inclusiveness is a feeling of amazing warmth and camaraderie, at its most compelling during the film’s many original musical numbers, which are staged and shot with verve. The cast has wonderful screen presence — particularly DeVido, whose turn as the lovelorn heroine is magnetic. Representation matters. And in “Best Summer Ever,” it makes the movie come alive.”
As noted in the director statement, this film is “part of a movement to highlight the talents of disabled actors and crew members who deserve a chance to work in the industry. Filmmaking is a crucial medium for raising awareness and promoting cultural enlightenment, and we hope a film like ours can be a stepping stone to continue these important conversations.”
Webcast Special Features:
- Showing of "Best Summer Ever" trailer
- Conversations with DeVido, Wilson, and Pilkington about their experience on set, the significance of this film, and the reach of its impact.
We will be discussing this and more on July 22. If you would like to join the webcast live via Zoom, please RSVP to register and receive Zoom details.
To watch the full movie, "Best Summer Ever" is available on the following platforms: Amazon Prime Video, Youtube Movies, Vudu, Apple TV, and Google Play