2014 Summer Movie Preview: August

The summer is almost over. Not only does it mean school (or for me, life) is about to start, but it also means the start of the Oscar season. Although there are some movies that have come out but I’ve yet to see (Boyhood, Begin Again, and Magic in the Moonlight), this summer movie season had a lot of successful hits (compared to last year). It seems like the month of August is going to have more movies that might flop, with the exception of a few movies (including one that is my most anticipated movie of the whole summer). Let’s discuss what has yet to come out this coming month, shall we?

August 1

Guardians of the Galaxy

Guardians of the Galaxy – The latest from Marvel is my most anticipated movie for the entire summer. It’s always refreshing to have something new coming from Marvel. Like with Iron Man (2008), my excitement for this movie went through the roof. I believe this is what a great comic book movie should look like: hilarious, touching, action-packed, and entertaining as hell. With an excellent cast (not to mention Bradley Cooper being the voice of a talking raccoon), a soundtrack containing songs from the ’70s, Guardians of the Galaxy looks more like a comic book movie than an homage to some classic adventure movies (i.e. Star Wars and Indiana Jones). Looking forward to seeing it on opening day!

Get On Up

Get On Up – Biopics of Freddie Mercury, Frank Sinatra, The Beatles, Elvis, and Elton John have yet to be made. Usually, music biopics can be very difficult to make. They need to have an actor/actress who could capture the essence and spirit of the music icon, and bring enough energy to make the movie worthwhile. Get on Up, the biopic of James Brown, looks like what Jersey Boys could have been. I can’t picture a better actor to play James Brown than Chadwick Boseman (Jackie Robinson from 42). Co-starring Viola Davis and Octavia Spencer under the direction of Tate Taylor (of The Help), I feel good to have a biopic about this legendary artist.

Calvary

Calvary – I haven’t heard anything much about this Irish film until recently. The movie stars Brendan Gleeson (known for his role of Mad-Eye Moody from Harry Potter) as a kind Catholic priest who is threatened during a confessional by a parishioner saying he’s going to kill him. He must face his forces that are closing in around him. I think this movie looks absolutely terrific. Like with Philomena talking more about becoming a more respectable human being than Irish Catholicism, this movie talks about suffering the sins and forgiving those around you. The scenery of Ireland looks absolutely beautiful.

August 8

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles – I never seen the original television show from the ’90s, but it doesn’t mean I’ve never heard of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. With Michael Bay being the producer and Johnathan Liebesman (of the appalling Battle: Los Angeles) directing, I rather eat a whole box of pizza than to see this film. Megan Fox and Will Arnett look horrendously miscast! Definitely avoiding this at all costs.

Into the Storm

Into the Storm – *sigh* I feel sorry for Richard Armitage (Thorin Oakenshield of The Hobbit) for being a part of the movie. None of this looks believable at all! Anything else I need to say than that!?

Step Up - All In

Step Up: All In – Looks like the movie has a lot of attractive actors, loud music, and really impressive dance choreography. That’s basically all there is to it. I have never seen the other Step Up movies, and I don’t plan to see any of them (including this one).

The Hundred-Foot Journey

The Hundred-Foot Journey – Now this is more like it! A movie without any big explosions or special effects. Just a warm/delightful story about a family from India opening an Indian restaurant in France across the street from a celebrated French restaurant. While these two cultures battle each other, they come to appreciate each other.

What If

What If – With his Harry Potter years behind him, Daniel Radcliffe is continuing to showcase his talent as an actor. One of his breakout post-Harry Potter films was 2012’s The Woman in Black, a solid yet atmospheric haunted house picture with old-fashioned scares and a decent mystery scattered about. This year, he’s going to be in two films: Horns and What If. Originally titled The F Word (no, not *that* F word), this looks like a good romance story without being too sentimental and sappy.

August 15

Let's Be Cops

Let’s Be Cops (opens Aug. 13) – I think Let’s Be Idiots Than Cops could have been a much better title. A movie about two friends who try to be cops after attending a costume party sounds royally dumb. After watching the trailer, I felt like I just watched the first half of the movie. I’m definitely skipping it.

The Expendables 3

The Expendables 3 – I haven’t seen the predecessors, but I guess it wouldn’t matter much. With a ginormous cast of action stars, these movies feel like they would be fun on their own right. I don’t mind seeing this movie without seeing the others.

The Giver

The Giver – I haven’t read the book since the sixth grade, but I remember it being undeniably strange. The film adaptation of Lois Lowry’s bestseller stars Jeff Bridges, Meryl Streep (unrecognizable in her role), Katie Holmes, and Taylor Swift (also unrecognizable). I don’t know what to think about this movie. It might turn out good, or it might turn out bad. Who knows?

August 22

Sin City - A Dame to Kill For

Sin City: A Dame to Kill For – I’ve yet to see Sin City. I appreciate the visual style of these movies; almost like a moving comic book. I appreciate the all-star cast: Josh Brolin, Bruce Willis, Mickey Rourke, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Eva Green, and so on. I guess it’s time to watch the predecessor.

If I Stay

If I Stay – This is like Ghost for a new generation. It has a deep story starring the lovely Chloe Grace Moretz about a teenage girl in critical condition after being in a car accident that leaves her family dead, and she must choose her own fate. I have a feeling this will have teenage audiences bawling their eyes out.

August 29

The November Man

The November Man (opens Aug. 27) -I can tell this is going to flop. Big time! Although having experience of playing a secret agent, Pierce Brosnan seems like he’s returning to his James Bond glory days. This doesn’t look original whatsoever.

As Above, So Below

As Above, So Below – Another movie in which I assume is going to flop. There are a lot of horror films that are marketed as scary but come out as unintentionally goofy. I’m skipping this one for sure.

Recap:

Most Anticipated: Calvary, Guardians of the Galaxy, Get On Up, The Hundred-Foot Journey

Least Anticipated: As Above, So Below, Into the Storm, Let’s Be Cops, Step Up: All In, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

I hope you enjoyed reading on what my thoughts are on the upcoming movies for the month of August. Tell me in the comments on what are your most anticipated movies and least anticipated movies for the month of August. I appreciate anyone who has taken the time to read my thoughts on what had yet to come this summer. I had quite a bit of fun typing about them, and I’m looking forward to doing this next summer. Stay tuned for my list featuring my most anticipated movies for the rest of 2014. Take care.

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2014 Summer Movie Preview: July

Two months down; two months to go. So far, this summer had some movies that met and exceeded my expectations. It also had its fair share of surprises and failures. I don’t think this July will have some great mainstream films, but I’m hoping it will be a memorable month for independent films. I’m quite upset Jupiter Ascending got pushed back from July 18th to February 6, 2015. Channing Tatum has literally improved as an actor, and I’m hoping it will be worth waiting to see him with his pointy ears, alongside Mila Kunis, in that nifty-looking visual extravaganza by the creators of The Matrix.

Probably this month will look good even though it got pushed back, not to mention a new one by Woody Allen and one that took 12 years in the making. Here are my thoughts on what has yet to come in the month of July.

July 4

Tammy

Tammy (opens July 2) – Kicking off the 4th of July weekend is the highly-anticipated comedy starring Melissa McCarthy. She plays the title role going on a road trip with her mother after getting fired from her job at a local fast-food joint. Known for being on the hit sitcom Mike & Molly, McCarthy redefines the means of making a comedy worthwhile. After having everyone in stitches in last year’s buddy comedy The Heat, she has a trick of delivering a punchline that is timed so perfectly. Also starring Susan Sarandon, Tammy looks like it will be good for a few laughs.

Deliver Us From Evil

Deliver Us From Evil (opens July 2) – I’m not a big fan of horror films. Even if they are based on a true story, the result would be too ridiculous to be true. Not to mention lacking tension and atmosphere, it would rather focus more on gimmicky blood and gore, characters we would care less about, and boring the hell out of the audience. Deliver Us From Evil looks far from the shtick we’ve been getting over the years. It may have a familiar concept involving a person being possessed by the devil, but it looks well-executed. I’ll wait and see if it will hold up to the true story it’s based on, not just making it dull and worthless.

Earth to Echo

Earth to Echo (opens July 2) – Looking like a cross between E.T. and Chronicle, Earth to Echo is the first in the found-footage sub-genre to be more family-oriented. We’re all familiar with the concept; a group of kids help an extraterrestrial to bring it back home. Super 8 had a familiar plot, but what mattered was the execution. J.J. Abrams did an astounding job with that, and also paying tribute to Steven Spielberg. On the other hand, despite the unoriginal concept, this looks quite standard in my opinion. I appreciate the filmmakers giving a purpose to audiences having a feeling of summer nostalgia. It might turn out good, it might turn out bad.

Begin Again

Begin Again (now playing in NY/LA, opens July 2) – After the success of Once, fans have been wondering why musicals should be small and independent rather than big and extraordinary. John Carney returns in the director’s chair to direct another low-budget musical. This time, he’s bringing it to America, featuring some modern musicians (Adam Levine from Maroon 5 and Cee Lo Green) and the charming Keira Knightley and Mark Ruffalo. I have a feeling it would be delightful.

July 11

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes – For someone who hasn’t seen the original Planet of the Apes movies, I was really pleased with the 2011 reboot Rise of the Planet of the Apes. It featured a compelling story about a scientist who successfully tests a breakthrough drug (that could cure Alzheimer’s disease) on a chimpanzee named Caesar. When Caesar is imprisoned in an ape sanctuary, he leads an uprising with his fellow apes. Not only James Franco did a really good job in the movie but I think the highlight is Andy Serkis. He captures the expressions and body language of Caesar so well that it looks like we’re connecting to an actual ape than the person behind it. The effects (notably the apes) are beyond excellent, and it contains one of the best climaxes of this decade.

I have a feeling the sequel, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, might be another one of those rare sequels that will surpass its predecessor. Featuring a great cast lead by Gary Oldman and a battle between humans and apes after a virus outbreak, I’m really looking forward to seeing this. I think it’s awesome that Caesar is going to talk more. He only had a couple of scenes of dialogue in the last film. Not to mention the moment where Caesar yells “NO!”

Boyhood

Boyhood – This is my most anticipated movie for the month of July. I’ve never seen a movie that looked as unique as Boyhood. Getting a lot of praise coming out of Sundance, Richard Linklater’s exploration of life seen through the eyes of a boy took 12 years to make. He would use the same cast (Patricia Arquette, Ethan Hawke, Ellar Coltrane, Lorelei Linklater) to act in sequences where they naturally develop over the time-period. It’s a similar technique he did with the Before trilogy; casting Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy every nine years to see the characters naturally mature. Boyhood looks like a special movie-going experience.

July 18

The Purge - Anarchy

The Purge: Anarchy – Really? Do they have to make another one? The first film had one of the most absurd concepts I’ve ever heard. If you forgot the concept from the first film, it takes place in the not-too-distant future where the government sets a 12-hour period in which every illegal crime becomes legal. The sequel has the same exact concept, which is good enough for me to skip it.

Planes - Fire and Rescue

Planes: Fire & Rescue – I haven’t seen its predecessor because it looked like a big, cheap, lazy spin-off to Cars. It gives a good reason why I’m skipping this one.

Sex Tape

Sex Tape – The concept sounds more like a sitcom than a mainstream comedy. A couple makes a sex tape on their iPad one night. The next couple of days, they must find out who was responsible for posting their sex tape. Because it stars two funny actors (Cameron Diaz and Jason Segel) doesn’t mean it looks any good.

I Origins

I Origins – The movie follows a molecular biologist examining the evolution of the human eye. After meeting a woman, he realizes his research complicates his scientific and spiritual beliefs which leads him to travel around the world. I have to admit the movie has an undeniably clever idea, but, from watching the trailer, it seems like the movie is going go all over the place. First, it starts off as a straight-forward sci-fi picture, then it sort of transitions into a romantic drama. I might end up renting this one.

July 25

Hercules

Hercules– Boy, oh boy. Do I have to explain why this movie looks bad? It wouldn’t surprise me if Brett Ratner would make something that is worse than X-Men: The Last Stand. Dwayne Johnson sure does have a lot of muscles to play the titular role, but I don’t think his performance would do it justice. There is a scene in the trailer where Hercules is about to fight zombies. That pretty much sums that I would avoid the movie at all costs.

Lucy

Lucy – Now that’s what I’m talking about! It may have similar concept to Limitless, but who wants to see a movie starring Scarlett Johansson as a woman turning into a superhuman after discovering a drug is implanted in her body? It looks insane!

Magic in the Moonlight

Magic in the Moonlight – After making Annie Hall back in 1977, there would be a movie written and directed by Woody Allen every year. Up to this day, critics would believe that half of his movies turned out good, and the other half turned out bad. After last year’s Blue Jasmine, I wondered how someone who sexually abused his daughter would be such a gifted actor/filmmaker. He created a darkly funny and devastating character study featuring a performance that made Cate Blanchett win the Oscar.

His latest movie, Magic in the Moonlight, looks delightful. Woody Allen bringing the charm of “The Roaring Twenties” in France to life is like a dream come true. Movies set in France (notably Paris) make me want to go there so bad. Emma Stone and Colin Firth look terrific together. I’m looking forward to seeing this one.

Recap:

Most Anticipated: Boyhood, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, Lucy, Magic in the Moonlight

Least Anticipated: Hercules, Planes: Fire & Rescue, The Purge: Anarchy

I hope you enjoyed reading on what my thoughts are on the upcoming movies for the month of July. Tell me in the comments on what are your most anticipated movies and least anticipated movies for the month of July. Stay tuned for a movie preview for the month of August at the end of July.

2014 Summer Movie Preview: June

Happy Memorial Day, everybody! I hope you are enjoying your cookouts, or maybe you’re just wondering what I think about some upcoming summer movies. You’re in the right place! The summer movie season is off to a very good start. We’re almost in the month of June. I’m about to graduate from high school, and begin my new road to life. Perhaps, pursue a career as a movie critic. This month has movies that look really good. Here are my thoughts on what the month of June has in store for movies.

June 6

Edge of Tomorrow

Edge of Tomorrow – I’ve been hearing early buzz from critics. Some of them are calling Edge of Tomorrow “the best action movie of the summer.” It does look like it will be really good. However, the concept sounds a lot like a video game. Not to mention the movie’s tagline: “Live. Die. Repeat.” To this day, it boggles my mind how people think Tom Cruise is a horrible actor. I think he’s one of those actors who can do anything he could get his hands on, like doing his own stunts. I’m quite skeptical how this movie will turn out to be.

The Fault in Our Stars

The Fault in Our Stars – Based on the #1 New York Times bestseller, here’s a love story that looks sweet but not syrupy (*ahem* Nicholas Sparks). We haven’t had a great mainstream romance movie in years. I’m down for it.

June 13

22 Jump Street

22 Jump Street – The sequel to one of the biggest surprises of 2012, 21 Jump Street, might have the exact same concept. We reintroduce Jenko and Schmidt going undercover again. This time, as college students. I think this will contain as much laughs, as much chemistry from Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill, and as much fun that made the first movie great.

How to Train Your Dragon 2

How to Train Your Dragon 2 – Another sequel coming out on the same weekend as 22 Jump Street…hell yes! I think How to Train Your Dragon is the best animated film that DreamWorks has ever done since Shrek. It was funny, touching, and visually breathtaking. The sequel looks FAN-FREAKING-TASTIC! Hurry up, June 13th!

June 20

Jersey Boys

Jersey Boys – Clint Eastwood directing a musical? How strange. Or, maybe strange in a good way?

Think Like a Man Too

Think Like a Man Too – I’m not into black humor. I’ve only seen a few episodes of Tyler Perry’s House of Payne, and I stopped watching it. This movie is no exception on how I feel. Kevin Hart is one good reason why I’m going to save my valuable time and money on this tripe.

June 27

Transformers - Age of Extinction

Transformers: Age of Extinction – Do we need another Transformers movie? The first one was good, no matter how stupid or overblown it can get. The second one sucked big time, and I wouldn’t see that obscene image of two wrecking balls clinging each other the same way ever again. How excruciating! The third one made up for what made its predecessor a big downer, but it was still not very good.

Mark Wahlberg is a likeable actor, but I don’t think he belongs in a bloody Transformers movie. Director Michael Bay might look back at some of the problems from the previous films, and perhaps make a good movie for once. Or, maybe he’ll focus on blowing s*** up rather than developing the human characters. We all know how bad of a director Bay is. Do we need to know what purpose he’s going bring into this movie? I guess it’s time to bring the Advil and water, because you will need a lot of it.

Recap:

Most Anticipated: How to Train Your Dragon 2 and 22 Jump Street

Least Anticipated: Transformers: Age of Extinction and Think Like a Man Too

I hope you enjoyed reading on what my thoughts are on the upcoming movies for the month of June. Tell me in the comments on what are your most anticipated movies for the month of June. Now I have to go study for my final exams. Stay tuned for a movie preview for the month of July on the last Monday of June. Take care.

2014 Summer Movie Preview: May

2014 started the year off with a bang for movies. It included a lot of bad-looking movies that I was glad to skip (I, Frankenstein and Pompeii). There was a movie that gained a lot of controversy before its release (Noah). Lastly, there were  movies in which I loved to death, and can’t wait to see again (The LEGO Movie, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, The Grand Budapest Hotel). Today, is the beginning of the summer movie season. The season in which the most anticipated blockbusters come out to see what they have to offer.

I have a feeling this summer is going to have entertaining movies. Over the next four months, I’m going to give my thoughts on the highly anticipated summer blockbusters and some independent films. Without further ado, let’s get started on the month of May.

May 2

The Amazing Spider-Man 2

The Amazing Spider-Man 2 – I really enjoyed the 2012 predecessor – The Amazing Spider-Man. It felt like a much more realistic take on Spider-Man’s origins than in Raimi’s trilogy. Director Marc Webb revisits some of the plot points from the 2002 film, and giving them a vivid glimpse of what happened. Andrew Garfield was the definitive choice to portray Peter Parker than Tobey Maguire. He acted more like any teenager would; funny, charismatic, and a bit of a smart-Alec.

I am looking forward to seeing him springing into more web-slinging action in The Amazing Spider-Man 2, despite the mixed reviews it has been getting. It might head into that Spider-Man 3 territory where there will be too much going on, but I’m still hoping for it to be good. Dane DeHaan as Harry Osborn and Jamie Foxx as the main villain? Couldn’t be much better than that.

belle

Belle – With it coming out today in limited release, this will expand across the country throughout the month of May. Belle is one of those films that gives history I never heard of. It follows the true story of Dido Elizabeth Belle, a mixed race daughter of Royal Navy Admiral, trying to end slavery in England while being raised by her aristocratic great-uncle. Featuring a stellar cast including Tom Wilkinson, Emily Watson and Tom Felton (Malfoy from Harry Potter) nifty-looking sets and costumes, Belle looks like a brilliant period-romance piece.

May 9

neighbors

Neighbors – There hasn’t been a lot of hilarious comedies lately. If you think the comedy genre is, for the most part, dead, it looks Neighbors – the latest from the creators of last year’s overrated comedy-horror ensemble This Is the End -will probably bring back the big laughs. A raunch-fest with Seth Rogen as a dad with a newborn baby against Zac Efron and his frat boys, a variety of amusing movie references, and a lot of energy? I’m so in!

May 16

Godzilla

Godzilla – This looks like this year’s Pacific Rim, but without the giant robots. Although I have yet to watch the original 1954 Japanese version featuring the iconic radioactive lizard, this version simply looks jaw-dropping. From the destruction to the look of Godzilla, the special effects look outstanding; giving the movie a realistic feel. This movie cannot get any more awesome even with it starring Bryan Cranston (of Breaking Bad fame), Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Elizabeth Olsen, and Ken Watanabe.

million_dollar_arm_ver2

Million Dollar Arm – Don Draper as a sports agent training cricket players from India to play in Major League Baseball? I don’t know about this. Even for a sports movie by Disney, it looks standard.

May 23

X-Men - Days of Future Past

X-Men: Days of Future Past – The only X-Men movies I have seen are X-Men Origins: Wolverine, X-Men: First Class, and The Wolverine. Although I didn’t enjoy X-Men Origins, the latter two were more than just superhero movies, but rather interesting character studies. With Days of Future Past being about the original characters from the X-Men trilogy going to the past to team up with their younger selves, this looks unbelievably fascinating.

blended

Blended – Remember when Adam Sandler used to be on Saturday Night Live? Making everyone laugh so hard that tears would roll down their face? Now that his SNL days are behind him, his comedy is starting to become boring. His new movie Blended is no exception. It’s a shame, because I liked him, alongside Drew Barrymore, in 50 First Dates. Boy, I never felt so embarrassed from watching the trailer. I’m definitely giving this one a pass.

May 30

Maleficent

Maleficent – It seems like every classic Disney cartoon is being remade into a live-action Disney film. With Maleficent and Cinderella, I think it’s unfair for the original cartoon. It’s not to say Maleficent looks bad. The movie looks visually stunning, although looking like Alice in Wonderland, Snow White and the Huntsman, and Oz: The Great and Powerful combined. Angelina Jolie is downright perfect for the role of Maleficent. Elle Fanning is not a bad choice for Princess Aurora, but her fake English accent ruins it. However, this dialogue between the two characters gets me pumped up for the movie:

Aurora: “Don’t be afraid”

Maleficent: “I’m not afraid”

Aurora: “Then come out.”

Maleficent: “Then *you’ll* be afraid.”

million_ways_to_die_in_the_west

A Million Ways to Die in the West– Written, produced, directed, and starring Seth MacFarlane, the idiot who can’t cancel Family Guy, A Million Ways to Die in the West looks like a grittier version of Blazing Saddles. It seems to satirize the Western genre in a disgusting way. Even though it has a great cast including MacFarlane, Charlize Theron, Neil Patrick Harris, Amanda Seyfried, and Liam Neeson, the trailer didn’t make me laugh. It might be good, but it doesn’t look any good, in my opinion.

Recap:

Most Anticipated: Godzilla

Least Anticipated: Blended

I hope you enjoyed reading on what my thoughts are on the upcoming movies for the month of May. Tell me in the comments on what are your most anticipated movies for the month of May. Stay tuned for a movie preview for the month of June on Memorial Day.