POSTED ON MAY 9, 2012:
The Summer Rides Again!
Summer movie preview, part 2
The Amazing Spiderman -- It doesn't seem so long ago that the Tobey Maguire-starring Spiderman hit theaters and, thanks to Sam Raimi's stellar direction, spawned one of the arguably best superhero films ever made. Now, thanks to Sony's need to keep the rights to Spidey out of Marvels hands we get this reboot, starring a fine Andrew Garfield, once again going over an oft told origin story that finds a young Peter Parker coming to grips with his newfound superpowers which pitting him against Curt Conner's and his scaly alter-ego, The Lizard. Emma Stone inhabits Gwen Stacy, while Rhys Ifans plays Conners.
Katie Perry: Part of Me -- I'm not even going to kid around here. Katy Perry's millions of fans may be going to see her 3-D biopic/concert movie to bask in the glow of her effervescent, spunky personality and enjoy the pulsing pop beats of her songs in a 10,000 watt movie theater. I will be going to see her stunning body splashed on a huge screen, in three dimensions while hoping with Pee Wee Herman-esque hope that I might be the only one in the theater.
Savages -- Director Oliver Stone's latest finds Taylor Kitsch and Aaron Johnson as two northern California pot growers, who share a beautiful, free-spirited girlfriend (Blake Lively). When she's kidnapped by a rival Mexican cartel, the duo of growers, of whom Kitsch is also a former Navy SEAL (really?) knows just what to do to rescue their mutual fuck buddy from the clutches of the drug lords. We all have a similar story. John Travolta and Uma Thurman co-star.
Ice Age: Continental Drift -- Didn't get enough of Manny, Diego and Sid slip-sliding their way through their arctic adventures in the first three Ice Age films? -- I couldn't tell you what happened since the first one, so I suppose if you are like me than maybe you are ready for more. Anyway, the seemingly immortal friends, who have seen everything from the first Ice Age, to the rise of the dinosaurs, now hitch a ride a glacier that finds our heroes battling pirates and reuniting with long lost family. Ray Romano, John Leguizamo and Denis Leary all reprise their paychecks.
Ted -- I don't like Seth McFarlane. Not Family Guy, not American Dad. Not his smarmy voice. None of it. Yet for some odd reason the trailer for Ted tickled me. Ted is a teddy bear (voiced by McFarlane) brought to life through the childhood wish of his owner, John (Mark Wahlberg). They remain best friends into adulthood, when Ted's frat boyish lifestyle conflicts with John's as he tries to move on from his childhood and land the girl of his dreams (Mila Kunis). McFarlane also writes and directs.
The Dark Knight Rises -- Well here it is. For me Prometheus is the end all be all of the summer but for everyone else it'll be the final installment of the Chris Nolan-directed trilogy of Batman films. Eight years after the greatness that was The Dark Knight (and Heath Ledger's iconic Joker) Batman has taken responsibility for the crimes of Harvey Dent -- to protect his reputation -- and has been exiled. He returns to Gotham just in time to meet Catwoman (Anne Hathaway) and be in a position to foil the nefarious plans of Bane (Tom Hardy), who, of course, aims to destroy Gotham and all that Batman has ever worked for. Bale returns with Morgan Freeman and Michael Caine.
Step Up: Revolution -- Oh God. Some generic looking girl dreams of being a professional dancer. She finds a bunch of likeminded airheads who think dancing is the shizz. Then some assholes film it in 3-D and then a gaggle of other assholes (i.e. the audience) actually gives them money for doing so. See Breakin', Roller Boogie or Beat Street instead. December 21st can't happen fast enough.
Neighborhood Watch -- Don't know if you noticed how fast the advertising for this thing got pulled after the Trayvon Martin shooting, but the trailer for this Evan Goldberg/Seth Rogen penned comedy hits at some true hilarity, despite all things Zimmerman. Jonah Hill (who's getting too skinny), Ben Stiller, Vince Vaughn and Richard Goddamn Ayoade (of The IT Crowd, Darkplace, Man to Man) form a neighborhood watch group of dads looking to get out of their dad-duties--only to find themselves defending the hood from invading alien hordes. This movie could suck and I'd still bless them for putting Moss on an American movie poster.
Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days -- In the middle of a boring summer? Want to watch another Whimpy Kid movie about getting out of school and having nothing to do for two goddamn months? Then this, apparently, is your flick.
The Bourne Legacy -- Reboots, sequels, prequels. It's almost not worth bitching about anymore as the source material for this fourth installment of the popular Robert Ludlum spy series wasn't even written by Ludlum. Talk about meta-unoriginality. Still, casting Jeremy Renner as a good guy asskicker is never a bad thing and Ed Norton as a slithery bad guy alone makes this worth a look. On top of that, the capable Tony Gilroy (Michael Clayton) directs.
Total Recall -- Since everybody who loves 1990's Total Recall pretty much loves it for all the crazy shit that happens on Mars, it makes perfect sense to set the 2012 remake on Earth and leave out everyone's favorite part entirely. Colin Farrell replaces Arnie, who thinks his mind has been infiltrated to make himself a double agent in one brain. Len Wiseman directs which is never, ever, ever a good thing.
The Campaign -- Jay Roach is a very popular and successful comedy director who seems to make only barely amusing films, while squandering great casts and premises in the process. With The Campaign, Roach in all likelihood sucks the freshness from this story of two North Carolina politicians (a dream cast Will Farrell and Zack Galifianakis) vying for a spot in the House of Representatives, who sink to increasingly lower lows in order to triumph. Squandered, I say.
Red Hook Summer -- Spike Lee's semi-sequel to the best film he's ever made, and one of the best films ever made, Do the Right Thing revisits a Brooklyn neighborhood during a sweltering summer as a boy from the ATL comes to visit a grandfather he's never met, and see a world that might change him forever. Lee writes and directs.
ParaNorman -- This 3-D stop-motion animated adventure from the makers of the great, creepy Coraline, follows the adventures of Norman, a misunderstood kid who can speak with the dead. When his hometown of Blithe Hollow comes under attack by ghouls, ghosts and zombies it's up to Norman to save the lives of the people who were never very nice to him. Kodi Smit-McPhee voices Norman.
The Expendables 2 -- Stallone, Schwarzenegger, Willis, Statham, Li, Van Damme, Chuck Norris (I think that's pretty much all of them) star in this sequel to the ultra-violent 2010 fantasy cast, super retarded actiongasm. This time out the Roided Renegades seek revenge when one of their own is killed by a mercenary. Taking on two new recruits, the Expendables set off to the jungle to stop a bad guy and get revenge. Don't forget your heating pads.
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