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Summer is a magical time of the year where lifelong memories are created, different countries are visited, and bank accounts are emptied.
That’s for people with a social life however. I’m more interested in spending days off work inside a darkened room with a 20-foot screen.
The original 2016 film was a surprise smash hit and received 2 Golden Globe nominations, so naturally a sequel was going to be greenlit.
With original director Tim Miller stepping aside to take up the poisoned chalice of the Terminator franchise, John Wick co-creator and Atomic Blonde helmer David Leitch has stepped in to bring the irreverent Merc With A Mouth back to the big screen.
Ryan Reynolds’ performance in the first movie elevated it from merely decent action comedy to legitimately hysterical. With a bigger budget this time along with more Marvel toys to play around with, expect more meta-humour and fourth wall breaks than you can shake a stick at.
Solo: A Star Wars Story
In what might be either the biggest hit of the summer or the biggest flop, this Han Solo prequel film has had a storied path to the big screen.
Phil Lord and Chris Miller (best known for the excellent Jump Street movies) were removed as directors last June following reports of them being over-awed with the task of directing a Star Wars movie and going wildly over-budget, so Ron Howard stepped in.
The shift in directorial style and tones could not be more jarring, and leading man Alden Ehrenreich had to avail of an acting coach to better emulate young Harrison Ford, however, all those behind the scenes woes are forgotten with one actor playing a particular character.
You better believe that Donald Glover will bring his usual A-Game to the table, and will make the film roughly 34% better solely because he’s in it.
Emilia Clarke, Woody Harrelson, Thandie Newton and Paul Bettany round out the cast. So if you’re not sick of Star Wars seemingly being shown every other weekend at the cinema.
Danny Ocean’s hitherto unseen sister is also a master thief and has a knack of recruiting some of the most famous people in the industry to work for her.
When people think of ensemble casts, they think of a superhero movie, but the ensemble here is being used in a comedy thriller and what a cast it is!
We have Sandra Bullock in the lead, and she’s joined by Cate Blanchett, Anne Hathaway, Mindy Kaling, Rihanna, Sarah Paulson, Helena Bonham-Carter and up-and-comer Awkwafina rounding out the principal cat.
Sadly, James Corden is also in this movie. You have all these incredible actresses, and you throw James Corden into the mix for some reason. It’s like going to a nice restaurant, and the soft drink you order is very obviously supermarket brand.
Horror has been experiencing a boom recently with the likes of Get Out, It, and The Conjuring movies bringing in some of the best box office takes and critical accolades comparable to the genre’s late 60s/early 70s heyday, and Hereditary looks set to carry on the horror streak.
The film is about a family member passing away, but a presence still lingers around the Graham household, and it seems to be taking a particular interest in the family’s daughter..
With an intriguing cast including Toni Collette in the lead, our own Gabriel Byrne as the father, and Naked Brothers Band alum Alex Wolff as the brother.
The Incredibles 2
It only took 14 years to get a sequel.
Director Brad Bird has been busy dabbling in live-action to mixed results (Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol was great, but Tomorrowland is the worst mash-up of Wizard Of Oz and Black Mirror you’ll ever see) but he’s back in the animation fold for the first time since 2007’s Ratatouille.
The film picks up exactly where the 2004 classic left off, that is to say, fighting The Underminer, but what happens after the fact is being kept mostly under wraps.
If it’s anything like the original, expect gorgeous visuals, really clever jokes that will go over the heads of kids, a killer Michael Giacchino score, and a plethora of memes spawned by the film.
Sicario: Day Of The Soldado
Usually, that’s a massive red flag that the studio is planning to add in more car chases and explosions to appeal to the lowest common denominator, but if this film even has 1% of the smarts and tautness of the original, you’re in for a good time.
Mercifully, the screenplay is being penned by Taylor Sheridan who wrote the original, and in the meantime picked up an Oscar nomination for Hell Or High Water, so if it’s good enough for Sheridan, it’s good enough for unpleasable film buffs.
The directorial choice is somewhat unorthodox, an Italian by the name of Stefano Sollima, but his credentials are rock-solid – he directed ten episodes of the Sky drama Gomorrah.
The original captured lightning in a bottle and remains the tensest cinema experience I’ve had to date, so this film has an awful lot to live up to.
Have you ever watched Die Hard and wondered what would happen if you cast The Rock instead of Bruce Willis? Well so did the executives who greenlighted this.
At this stage The Rock has become roughly as profitable and bankable as salted caramel ice-cream, Hollywood could cast him as a maths teacher trying to solve the Riemann hypothesis, and it would still make an embarrassing amount of money.
In probably the weirdest career trajectory in recent memory, the film is being directed by the same guy who directed Dodgeball, and We’re The Millers.
To be fair people had doubts the director of Bring It On and Yes Man could direct a Marvel movie, yet here we are in 2018 with Peyton Reed directing Ant-Man 2.
Sorry To Bother You
If the success of Get Out or Shape Of Water has proven anything, it’s that audiences will lap up anything wholly original or weird.
Enter Boots Riley, critically acclaimed underground rapper serving up his directorial debut.
What this movies hook is that it’s a scathing satire about a black telemarketer who adapts a “white voice” to climb up the corporate ladder.
I imagine the elevator pitch for this film was “The Apartment meets Do The Right Thing” and if that sentence means anything to you, it’s a sure sign that the movie will explode upon release.
Lakeith Stanfield, best known as a Darius on Donald Glover’s tremendous dramedy Atlanta is in the lead role here, with Tessa Thompson, fresh off Alex Garland’s Annihilation and Thor Ragnarok playing his girlfriend.
Already, the two lead roles are populated by some of the best young actors working today, but the cast list gets better as you scroll down the list.
Armie Hammer, last seen making Timothee Chalamet and millions of others cry in Call Me By Your Name plays the boss, and Hollywood veteran Danny Glover plays the co-worker who tips off Stanfield’s character about the “white voice” concept. Once a summer, we get an original movie that ends up at the Oscars, I’m calling it now that Sorry To Bother You will be that film.
So there you have it, this is the preview of films released this Summer, make sure to binge-watch them before college starts!
By Michael Finnerty
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