The summer movie season officially began a couple of week-ends ago with the release of Iron Man. My two sons and I went to see Iron Man the other day and the film was as entertaining as the critics advertised. I don’t know if the film deserves the 95% approval rating it received on Rottentomatoes but it was satisfying to see a film that wasn’t totally mindless super saturated with special effects… I have not particularly looked forward to the summer movie menu for some time now because summers have increasingly become the season of sequels for the corporate driven movie industry. Twenty two to be exact last summer and let’s just say watching the second, third, or fourth installment of Shrek is not how I generally want to spend my precious free time. Over the past three summers it has gotten so bad I have pretty much tuned out what’s out there unless I hear from friends or some of “my people on the street” about a must see film. This summer has it’s fair of sequels or ongoing storylines but there are a few films out there that look “potentially” interesting. Here is this summers line up with a few brief comments.
May 16th….Prince Caspian, the sequel to the Chronicles of Narnia. The trailers for this film look very good. I love the story and thought the studios did a good job of adapting the book to film which is not easy to do. This sequel has the potential to be even better than the first film. Let’s hope so…
May 23…Raiders of the Lost Ark…I loved the original series, except for the second film. Generally, I don’t like 20 year sequels because the new and supposedly potential improvements can never live up to expectations…Think Star Wars…I haven’t heard or read anything about this film, one way or another, but the trailers look like a rehash of the classic trilogy which may satisfy the longings of the nostalgia crowd who don’t mind seeing Harrison Ford doing his thing one more time…but… I’ll wait to see what the fans have to say before I spend my hard earned money on this classic blast from the past.
June 13….The Incredible Hulk and M.Night Shyamlan’s The Happening….I actually liked the first Hulk movie even though it wasn’t a huge fan favorite The sequel looks quite different than the first installment with different special effects and different actors. Edward Norton plays in the sequel and I am a big fan of his so hopefully Norton and the special effects crew will bring us something that is at least worthy of the price of a matinee ticket…I am a huge fan of the work of M.Night Shyamalan. I love all his films except for the last one which I didn’t think was as bad as everything thought….Even though his last film was not on par with his earlier work he always brings us a unique story and interesting characters which creates a sense of anticipation for me…so…while his last film wasn’t a winner I still anticipate his next film which will arrive in theatres in about six weeks.
July 4th….Hancock…My son brought this film to my attention. I know absolutely zero about the film and have not seen any trailers…but…the combination of Will Smith and Charlize Theron is enough to get me to take a hard look when the film arrives in theatres on our nations birthday.
July 11….Hellboy II: The Golden Army….The first Hellboy didn’t get as much attention of some of the other Marvel comic book blockbusters. Personally, I liked Hellboy, more than I thought I would, and I especially loved the performance by Rod Perlman, who played Hellboy. I anticipate this film will be bigger and better than the last because the director Guillermo Del Toro has been perfecting his craft and is a rising star in the film industry. While Hellboy is not as dark as some of his other Gothic dark fantasies like Pan’s Labyrinth, his mastery and reputation with the critics and serious fans of the fantasy genre has increased with each film. Let’s just hope this trend continues.
July 18…The Dark Knight…I am not a huge fan of the Batman series but I really did like the last Batman film. I found the history behind Batman fascinating. I just hope they don’t screw up the next Batman by making it more about special effects than the story. The trailers are full of shoot em up, explosions, but lets just hope this is your usual run of the mill marketing technique to wet the whistle of those movie junkies awaiting their next adrenaline rush.
July 25….The X-Files….I am withholding my enthusiasm for one of my all time favorite television series. I loved the X-files but did not like the previous X-file movie. The story of alien abduction and the never ending government conspiracy theory has gotten old for this X-file fan. They need to go back to some of the other interesting paranormal stories…and…If they rehash the alien abduction storyline one more time than expect this X-File fan to stay away from the theatre and spend my time watching X-file reruns.
August 22….Crossing Over…Crossing Over stars Harrison Ford, Ashley Judd, and Sean Penn….I am not a huge Harrison Ford fan, because I consider his acting abilities somewhat limited…but….I do really like Ashley Judd and Sean Penn. Crossing Over is a story about immigration. The story is set in L.A. and from what I can gather, the plot involves exploring how difficult life is for immigrants who come to this country. I haven’t heard any initial rumblings about this movie but the subject matter and the combination of acting talent intrigue me, so I’ll be keeping my eyes open to stories in the weeks and months to come regarding this film…