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Summer with Alicia

There’s a great deal more to the evolution of filmmaking than just the implementation of CGI or technological advancements. In the same way that these facets advance, there’s also a progression of the stories that filmmakers are able to present based on the direction of society as well as what prior generations of storytellers have presented. This culminates in more intricate and multifaceted plots and characters. Actress and producer Nicole Fahel has some diverse influences in her film Summer with Alicia but upon investigation they make complete sense. This film about four friends has girl-crush/same sex qualities to it but it’s not a film about lesbianism. While this may have been a focus in films such as Monster (Charlize Theron’s Oscar Award Winning performance for Best Actress, as prostitute turned serial killer Aileen Wuornos) and the Wachowski Brothers (responsible for the multiple Oscar winning Matrix trilogy among others) Bound with Jennifer Tilly and Gina Gershon, the characters in Summer with Alicia have no “hardened” personality traits as a result of society’s view of them; in fact, quite the opposite. Fahel’s portrayal as Violet as well as her choices in creating the film owe some accolades to these earlier films which allowed the relationship dynamics to be one of many complex parts that make this film so intriguing. If anything, Summer with Alicia is deceptive in a positive way; it’s the kind of film that keeps you guessing about which characters you trust. The film made an obvious impact with recognitions from the Festigious International film festival 2017 (Best Indie Short), Top Indie Film Awards 2017 (Best Short Film), and others. Fahel and her cast were the source of excitement in this character driven plot, receiving awards for Best Actress at the Festigious International film festival and Best Ensemble at the Actors Awards 2017.


Marina Fraga’s script for the movie was built to capitalize on the chemistry of actresses Isabelle Menard, Hanne Andersen, and Fahel. Nicole dove deep into the project serving as both lead actress and producer, working closely with director Nicholas Cunha to fashion this intriguing tale of female relationships and deception. The story is a twisting love story/con of Violet [Fahel], Alicia [Menard], and Marcos [Orlando Pineda] who hope to gain the trust of a lonely rich girl named Summer [Andersen]. Alicia strikes up an amorous relationship with Summer in hopes of stealing money but when Violet becomes jealous, a gun sparks a new plan that leads down a very regrettable path.

The complex and slow burning fuse in the storyline is Violet. A quiet loner who is distrustful of those outside her close knit circle, she is both fragile and capable of summoning great determination and strength when necessary. Secretly in love with her best friend [Alicia], Violet experiences one too many changes in the plan and acts out as a result. Fahel’s portrayal of her is delicate at first with an evolution so gradual that it is surprising once Violet decides she has had enough. Her low key rudeness and dismissiveness of Summer give hints as to her motives and her true feelings.

One of the most powerful factors in this story is the “handing off” of a gun to several different characters; a component that keeps the viewer on the edge of their seat as to who will be prompted to use it. Fahel describes, “We wanted to show some of the pros and cons of this. Nowadays there is so much going on with guns and shootings that it’s hard to just pick a side. I come from a country where we supposedly have gun control but yet we see thieves and people who want to hurt others with guns all the time. In the movie, Summer has a gun for protection but she gives it up for her girlfriend, Alicia. We see Violet and Alicia with guns later on. We see that people have guns to both protect themselves and to hurt others. It doesn’t really matter the reason for having one; having that much power in one’s hand is literally like having someone’s life in your hand. It shouldn’t be that easy. People’s lives should be worth more. We didn’t want the topic to be one sided. It’s more true to life in this way.”

At its core, Summer with Alicia is about knowing who you really are and discovering if events will sway or alter this. There are numerous stereotypes that are challenged and broken in this film. Responsibility for one’s own actions and their consequences are displayed via a number of different characters in the story. Nicole Fahel communicates that for her the film is about trust; who you trust, why you trust, and whether or not you should trust. Viewers of Summer with Alicia will ask this question to themselves repeatedly as the watch this delightfully unpredictable film.

Written by Kelly King

Summer with Alicia Reviewed by JaamZIN on 3:32:00 PM Rating: 5
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