Summer Storm (2004 film)

Summer Storm (German: Sommersturm) is a 2004 German coming-of-age comedy-drama film directed by Marco Kreuzpaintner, starring Robert Stadlober, Kostja Ullmann, Alicja Bachleda-Curuś, and Miriam Morgenstern. The story is set to the background of a rowing regatta, which climaxes into a summer storm.

Summer Storm
Theatrical release poster
Directed byMarco Kreuzpaintner
Produced byJakob Claussen
Written byThomas Bahmann
Marco Kreuzpaintner
StarringRobert Stadlober
Kostja Ullmann
Alicja Bachleda-Curuś
Miriam Morgenstern
Music byNiki Reiser
CinematographyDaniel Gottschalk
Edited byHansjörg Weißbrich
Distributed byX Verleih AG
Release date
  • 2 September 2004 (2004-09-02)
Running time
98 minutes[1]
Budget2.7 million
($3.5 million)
Box office$2,085,166[2]


Teams from all across Germany descend on a quiet camping ground for a week of training leading up to a final rowing competition. The plot follows the members of the RSC rowing club from southern Germany as they train for the regatta.

The boys are excited by the prospects of camping with a female rowing team from Berlin. However, by a stroke of fate, the Berlin girls' team cancels and is replaced by Queerschlag ("Queerstrokes"), a gay youth rowing team, and these boys are out, proud, and vocal about it.

Amidst the occasionally tense interactions between the members of his team and those of Queerschlag, Tobi is himself forced to confront his long-time feelings for his close friend and teammate Achim, who is already romantically involved with his girlfriend Sandra. Spurned by Achim, Tobi is devastated, but is partly consoled by his new friendship with Queerschlag member Leo.

The tension between the members of the two teams culminates in a scene set to the backdrop of a summer storm, during which Leo confronts Tobi about his homosexuality in front of his teammates. Tobi denies being gay, and, in an attempt to defend him, one of his teammates tells Tobi's girlfriend Anke to tell the rest of his teammates so. Anke, the only person to whom Tobi has confided his secret, remains silent.

Ultimately, Tobi comes out to his teammates and his rowing team, who seem to accept Tobi no matter what, and they go on to compete with Queerschlag in the final regatta.


Critical reception

Summer Storm received mixed reviews, currently holding a 48% rating on review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes based on 31 reviews.[3] On Metacritic, the film has a 51/100 rating, signifying "mixed or average reviews".[4]

  • Atlanta Journal-Constitution: "Summer Storm nicely captures the awkward confusion of first-time sexual encounters (gay or straight) and the collateral wounds caused by deceiving others and oneself."
  • Chicago Tribune: "Summer Storm is a contemporary teen summer romance with a modern sexual twist…"  "…believable characters…"
  • "…beautifully produced and very authentically played…"
  • Time Out London: "…the story's main strength lies in its characters…"
  • Review: "…psychologically sharp writing and performances."
  • TV Guide: "..“An observant and sensitively played drama about adolescent sexuality, unrequited love and heartbreak.”"[5]
  • Los Angeles Times: "..Kreuzpaintner displays a natural gift with actors and a clarity in storytelling that result in a fresh take on what otherwise might have been a familiar coming-of-age story."[5]
  • LA Weekly: "..A lovely wallow in the sweaty pains and joys of mostly gay adolescent love."[5]


  • Summer Storm received the audience award of the Münchner Filmfest 2004.[6]
  • Director (Marco Kreuzpaintner), New Faces Award, Germany, 2005
  • Best Young Actor – Film (Robert Stadlober)


The soundtrack contains the smash hit "Willkommen" from the album Herz by the German duo Rosenstolz; the single made the German Top 10 charts in September 2004.

  1. "Blonde on Blonde" by Nada Surf
  2. "Shake the Foundation" by Radio 4
  3. "Willkommen" by Rosenstolz
  4. "Los, Wixen" by Niki Reiser
  5. "Auf ins Bergische" by Niki Reiser
  6. "We'll Never Know" by Roman Fischer
  7. "Maltes Kuss" by Niki Reiser
  8. "Flames" by VAST
  9. "Verwirrt" by Niki Reiser
  10. "Achim" by Niki Reiser
  11. "Getaway" by Roman Fischer
  12. "Jim's Theme" by Niki Reiser
  13. "Coming Out" by Niki Reiser
  14. "Catch Me" by Kerosin
  15. "We Oh We" by The Hidden Cameras
  16. "Crooked Lines" by The Go-Betweens
  17. "For Lovers" by Wolfman/Pete Doherty
  18. "The Power of Love" by Frankie Goes to Hollywood
  19. "Sommersturm" by Niki Reiser
  20. "The Summer We Had" by Nova International
  21. "Go West" by Nova International


  1. "SOMMERSTURM (15)". Peccadillo Pictures. British Board of Film Classification. 15 July 2005. Retrieved 24 July 2014.
  2. "Summer Storm (2006)". Box Office Mojo. Internet Movie Database. 20 September 2007. Retrieved 24 July 2014.
  3. "Summer Storm (Sommersturm)". Rotten Tomatoes. Flixster. Retrieved 24 July 2014.
  4. "Summer Storm Reviews". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved 24 July 2014.
  5. Alexander Ryll (2014). "Essential Gay Themed Films To Watch, Summer Storm". Gay Essential. Retrieved 22 December 2014.
  6. Lockruf vom anderen Ufer; SZ vom 2. September 2004
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