Summer Scars

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Summer Scars
Summer scars poster.jpg
Film Poster
Directed by Julian Richards
Produced by Julian Richards
Mike Tims
Written by Julian Richards
Al Wilson
Release date
Running time
73 minutes
Country United Kingdom
Language English
Budget £135,000[2]

Summer Scars is a 2007 British horror film produced and directed by Julian Richards. It is based on a hostage situation that Richards experienced during his childhood. The cast includes Kevin Howarth, Ciaran Joyce, Amy Harvey, Darren Evans, Jonathan Jones, Chris Conway, Ryan Conway, and Chole Parfitt.


Six youths ditch school for the woods where some hot rodding on a stolen moped changes the fate of their day. They crash into Peter, a dishevelled drifter, who is delighted to have a group of teens to hang out with. First he gains their trust by joining in their games but then his behaviour changes. Peter uses what he has learned about the kids against them, bullying the alpha boys, belittling the weaker ones and saving his worst for the only girl in the group. Realising too late they are being held hostage the kids are forced to embrace the dark side of human nature in order to survive the ordeal.



The film had a limited UK theatrical release in 2009 by the Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA) in their screening season for 'New British Cinema'. In 2008, Summer Scars was released on DVD in North America by TLA Releasing on their Danger After Dark label. In 2009, the film was released on DVD in the UK by Soda Pictures. Other DVD distributors include MIG Film GmbH (German speaking Europe), MCF Megacom (Former Yugoslavia), Wide Pictures (Spain), Sahamongkol Film International (Thailand) and Viswas (India)


Rotten Tomatoes, a review aggregator, reports that 70% of ten surveyed critics gave the film a positive review; the average rating was 5.6/10. The site's consensus reads: "This low budget British psycho-thriller packs plenty of atmospheric tension and suspense into it's slender running time."[3] Summer Scars has been linked with other, roughly contemporaneous, films that deal with concerns over "Broken Britain" and a fear of "hoodies", including Harry Brown, Eden Lake, The Disappeared, Outlaw, The Great Ecstasy of Robert Carmichael and Heartless.[4]

Kurt Dahlke of DVD Talk rated it 4/5 stars and called it "lean, mean, disturbing and deftly crafted".[5] Josh Winning of Total Film rated it 3/5 stars and called it a "bare-boned tween nightmare" that is a combination of Stand by Me and Eden Lake.[6] Nigel Floyd of Time Out London rated it 3/5 stars and wrote, "An inexperienced cast don't always make the most of a slippery, unsettling script".[7] Andrew Pulver of The Guardian rated it 2/5 stars and wrote, "There's not much to recommend in this putative hoodie horror from Julian Richards, which takes the inverse position to Eden Lake."[8]


Organization Award Recipient Result Year Ref
BAFTA Cymru Best Newcomer Al Wilson Won 2008 [9]
Best Titles Craig Wilkinson Won 2008 [9]
Best Film Julian Richards Nominated 2008 [10]
Canada International Film Festival Best Foreign Feature Summer Scars Won 2009 [11]
London Independent Film Festival Best Director Julian Richards Won 2008 [12]
Fantastic Fest Best Actor Kevin Howarth Won 2007 [13]


  1. ^ Blaney, Martin (2007-09-07). "UK and US films open world and international premieres in Oldenburg". Screen Daily. Retrieved 2014-08-27. 
  2. ^ "Horror film Summer Scars cuts up festival circuit". Wales Online. 2009-06-18. Retrieved 2014-08-28. 
  3. ^ "Summer Scars (2007)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 2014-06-08. 
  4. ^ Graham, Jane (5 November 2009). "Hoodies strike fear in British cinema". The Guardian. Retrieved 21 August 2011. 
  5. ^ Dahlke, Kurt (2008-10-20). "Summer Scars". DVD Talk. Retrieved 2014-06-08. 
  6. ^ Winning, Josh (2009-05-26). "Summer Scars". Total Film. Retrieved 2014-06-08. 
  7. ^ Floyd, Nigel (2009-06-02). "Summer Scars (15)". Time Out London. Retrieved 2014-06-08. 
  8. ^ Pulver, Andrew (2009-06-04). "Summer Scars". The Guardian. Retrieved 2014-06-08. 
  9. ^ a b "Welsh Baftas 2008: Winners". Broadcast. 2008-04-28. Retrieved 2014-08-28. 
  10. ^ Mitchell, Wendy (2008-04-07). "BAFTA Wales film nominees include Summer Scars, Daddy's Girl". Screen Daily. Retrieved 2014-08-28. 
  11. ^ "2009 Winners". Canada International Film Festival. Retrieved 2014-08-28. 
  12. ^ Dawtrey, Adam (2008-04-22). "'Ruby Blue' wins London festival". Variety. Retrieved 2014-08-28. 
  13. ^ Siebalt, Joshua (2008-01-28). "New Pic, Festival Dates for Summer Scars!". Dread Central. Retrieved 2014-08-28. 

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