It’s time for our Summer Movie preview, and as usual there’s at least ten movies I’ll not be looking forward to along with the good ones.
The Least Anticipated Movies of the Summer
Runner-Up: Captain America: Civil War…I know, I know, it’s gotten “great” reviews so far, but so did Captain America 2 and if anything my interest in this world has gone down since then.
10. Mother’s Day…I love mom, but I can’t think of a worse way to “celebrate” her than taking her to a sure-fire dud from Gary Marshall.
9. Genius…A great example of how not every terrible-looking movie is a big budget blockbuster. This is a film about three American writers (Tom Wolfe, Hemingway, Fitzgerald) portrayed by three Brits/Aussies, and the accents are notably awful. It looks likely to indulge in caricatures more than honest portrayals.
8. Suicide Squad…You just know it’s going to be a CGI-wankfest with no real enjoyment. Plus, the trailer makes it look like the director couldn’t stage an action scene.
7. Angry Birds…Just no…
6. Central Intelligence…Another month, another Kevin Hart movie.
5. Ben-Hur…Summer is all about remakes nobody asked for, but they don’t usually come in shameless Biblical varieties.
4. The Purge: Election Year and Now You See Me 2…Honestly, these two films will probably not be terrible. They’re just completely unnecessary sequels. Although not nearly as outright offensive as 1 through 3…
1. through 3. Ghostbusters, Alice Through the Looking Glass, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles…Some real, real low standards set for family entertainment this year.
And 5 I’m Not Sure About, From Least Sure About to So-So
5. Independence Day 2…Probably going to be bad. I’ll say “probably” and remain foolishly optimistic.
4. Equity…This female-driven Wall Street film actually sounds pretty good, but there isn’t a trailer for it so far. I just wanted to raise awareness more than really recommend or diss it.
3. Cafe Society/Money Monster…I think we’ve all got a pretty good idea of what we’re getting with a Woody Allen movie, but hey, this one stars Jesse Eisenberg as his surrogate and Kristen Stewart and Blake Lively so uhhh…I guess that’s something. Plus, Money Monster looks like something that is trying to be good, but will probably not wind up saying as much as it wants to say.
2. Finding Dory…It’s not that this movie will be bad. In fact, I’m sure it won’t be. It’s just that I’d be lying if I said I was really and truly looking forward to it. I’m sure it’ll have those great ocean-set visuals, but Dory honestly got on my nerves during “Finding Nemo” and there’s no reason to assume a Dory-centric sequel will make that problem go away.
1. The Legend of Tarzan…Will this be as good as The Jungle Book? Doubtful, but I’m lenient on jungle-set action adventures based on classic kid’s books.
The Ten I’m Most Looking Forward To…
10. The Infiltrator…The trailer (about an agent trying to expose Pablo Escobar’s money laundering operation) looks like a generic undercover cop movie, but anything with Bryan Cranston is worth watching.
9. The BFG…The trailer looks bland and borderline indecipherable, but I loved this book when I was a kid. One of the most promising kid’s films scheduled to come out…
8. Kubo and the Two Strings…and this is other half of that “most promising kid’s
7. Jason Bourne 4…So far, there has not been a bad Bourne film, and Paul Greengrass has never made a bad movie. So why am I not more excited to see this one? I guess part of me had kind-of moved on with Jeremy Renner’s “Bourne” replacement and that interesting Edward Norton villain.
6. Nice Guys…Will it be good? Doubtful, but Russell Crowe and Ryan Gosling appear to have surprisingly good buddy-chemistry. Plus, Gosling’s best roles in recent years have been half-comedic ones like “Crazy Stupid Love” or “The Big Short” and this should show off that side more.
5. Our Kind of Traitor…A solid John Le Carre book, and his material is having a major moment in pop culture between stellar film adaptations (“A Most Wanted Man”) and TV ones (“The Night Manager”).
4. Pop Star: Never Stop Never Stopping…Andy Samberg’s spoof on pop/hip-hop stars looks like the first film that really seems to be paying attention to what I call “Believe in Yourself” vanity. Celebrity-trash culture now has a surreally aspirational, faux-feel good vibe to the shallowness.
3. War Dogs…Todd Phillips is not a good director, so this movie may very well turn out to be garbage, but Jonah Hill and Miles Teller as millennial arms dealers (based on a true story)? Yes.
2. Free State of Jones…Matthew McConaughey has been on such a hot streak that I trust his taste in material. Plus, the story of a Southern farmer who led a rebellion against the Confederacy during The Civil War is one most people aren’t familiar with at all.
1. The Founder…Same as McConaughey, Micheal Keaton can do no wrong right now, and this biography of McDonald’s “founder”/thief looks like another great true-story most people don’t know.