Everyone has those moments and places in their lives that leave and indelible mark on them. For writer/director Mike Binder one of those places was the famed Canadian summer camp called camp Tamakwa. The camp was a couple hours north of Toronto and has had more than a few famous alumni. In addition to Binder, director Sam Rami, comedian Gilda Radner and many more.
Camp Tamakwa was the place Binder credits his desire to write and make movies and tell stories. It was there he first wrote a story and saw it come to life and gave birth to his career even at the early age of eleven. Binder would go on to create his love letter to the camp with his second directing effort, a film called Indian Summer. Due to the critical acclaim of his debut, Crossing The Bridge he was able to afford a stellar cast that he would enjoy life long friendships and working relationships with from Kevin Pollak to the great Alan Arkin who he would have to fight hard to get him cast due to a lull in Arkin’s career at the time.
The story is that of seven friends who reunite after twenty years to say goodbye to the camp they hold so dear. Having had loves among each other, partnerships and estrangements. Years of these relationships come together in a heart warming story. Although they are all adults it is still a very much coming of age story where after all these years they discover each other once again.
Arkin gives his usual perfect humorous yet perfectly acted performance. Pollak is the king of one liners and the female leads round out a cast that gelled so well together. It’s in the performances that Binder’s love for this time and place come out on the screen.
It is the first look at a true Mike Binder movie that is polished and perfectly mixed with his trademark of comedy and drama. He crafts a story that never lags of feels unnecessary. His writing was truly starting to take shape and become well honed. It was his biggest taste of success.
A true, well loved and fine film it’s to be put on the recommended list of any fan who is looking into his earlier work or if you just love a feel good movie.