Between the lingering winter and the early movie releases (hello, Avengers!), we really are skipping right over spring and jumping into the summer movie season this year. Since the movie theater is my preferred location for a date night with my husband or a girls night out with my friends, I don’t mind this development one bit.
However, when I look at the gigantic list of movie options over the next few months, I feel a bit overwhelmed. Perhaps you do, too? So let’s break this down together, so we know which movies to see — and which ones to skip.
Disclaimer: This is not an exhaustive list. I don’t do horror or graphic violence, so most of those movies aren’t going to show up here. These are simply the movies I think you are most likely to hear about and/or want to watch.
SEE IT: I wasn’t interested in Han Solo’s backstory until I saw this preview. And then I went from not interested to sign me up in less than three minutes. It reminds me of old-school Star Wars, and I laugh several times, every time I watch the preview. I’ll definitely be seeing SOLO this month!
LIFE OF THE PARTY (Melissa McCarthy goes to college, in theaters 5/11) looks funny, but since only half of her movies end up being great, this might be a movie to rent.
SKIP IT: If you’re in my Facebook group (and if not, why not?!), I’ve already shared some concerns about TULLY, which originally looked awesome. The movie has a big twist that changed my feelings about it dramatically. If you want to know more (and don’t mind the spoilers), here’s an article that explains.
I’m also skipping OVERBOARD (a gender-swapped version of the old Kurt Russell-Goldie Hawn movie), because it looks more dumb than funny. And I won’t be seeing DEADPOOL 2, although I know lots of people will be lined up when it comes out on the 18th. Hard-R movies just aren’t my thing, no matter how funny I find Ryan Reynolds.
Sadly, I’m adding SHOW DOGS to the skip it list. Originally, I’d said to take the kids to it because kids (at least mine) love talking animals. But since the movie’s release, critics and parents alike have warned of disturbing plot lines, dialogue, and scenes that normalize sexual abuse and send all sorts of wrong and dangerous messages to our kids. I have not seen this movie, but you can read more about it here and here. As for me and my house, we’ll be skipping it.
ALSO PLAYING: A documentary about a Supreme Court justice? In particular, Ruth Bader Ginsburg? It’s true; RBG isn’t the type of film I normally watch. But after reading about this one — called fierce, funny, stirring, inspiring, spiky, and sharp by critics — I’m looking forward to it!
SEE IT: Is it June 8 yet??? I can’t wait to see OCEAN’S 8, the all-female heist movie starring Sandra Bullock as Danny Ocean’s sister and a whole crew of amazing actresses. Like RBG in May, this looks both fierce and funny — and like a whole lot of fun!
Coming out that same weekend is the documentary everyone with a heart will want to see: WON’T YOU BE MY NEIGHBOR is about, of course, Mr. Rogers. And based on the trailer, it will be a big ol’ [amazing] cry-fest. So, don’t forget the tissues when you see this one!
SKIP IT: All right, look. I know a bajillion people will pack the theaters to watch dinosaurs terrorize the world. But this lady is saying nope, nope, nope-ity nope to JURASSIC WORLD: FALLEN KINGDOM (in theaters 6/22). First of all, I do not understand why these characters keep messing around with dinosaurs. C’mon, people! Second of all, you cannot show me a dinosaur attacking a little girl in her bedroom and expect me to do anything but run the other way. No thank you!
TAKE THE KIDS TO IT: Let’s face it — the kids are just an excuse to go see the long-awaited INCREDIBLES 2 when it opens on June 15! But even if you don’t have little ones to take to the theater, I say go see this one anyway. The trailer looks fantastic, and I just know this is going to be a ton of fun!
ALSO PLAYING: Apparently, there is a group of adults — in real life, you guys — who have played an ongoing game of tag for decades. And that is what the appropriately (if not creatively) titled TAG is about. It stars a whole lot of famous, funny people, so it might be great. Or it might be ridiculous. Or, I suppose, it could be both. It’s really hard to tell. It comes out on June 15, so you have some time to decide.
SICARIO: DAY OF THE SOLDADO will be in theaters this month as well (on 6/29). I haven’t seen the first one, but lots of people did. So if you loved the first one, you might like the sequel. (Just know that this one doesn’t have Emily Blunt.)
SEE IT: Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to spy (get it?!) the stunt that broke Tom Cruise’s ankle during filming. Nah, don’t worry about that. Just sit back and enjoy Tom Cruise doing what Tom Cruise does. I am SO excited about MISSION IMPOSSIBLE: FALLOUT (in theaters 7/27). I could watch this preview every day!
MI won’t be the only summer blockbuster this month. Marvel’s ANT-MAN AND THE WASP comes out on July 6, and it will be interesting to see how these two heroes deal with what happened in INFINITY WAR (if they do at all). I liked the first Ant-Man movie, but I’ll confess the preview for this one doesn’t wow me. But I’m a sucker for a superhero, so I’ll be seeing this one anyway.
All right. I realize this next one might be controversial. But the heart wants what the heart wants, and my musical-loving, cliche-falling-for heart wants a Mamma Mia sequel. MAMMA MIA: HERE WE GO AGAIN comes out on July 20, and I have yet to hear a single critic express any enthusiasm for this surprising sequel. And yet? I find it virtually impossible to stop grinning when I watch the trailer. So, I’ll be seeing this one, even if nobody else does.
SKIP IT: I like The Rock. I think he’s funny. But I have no desire to watch him save the world (and his family) in SKYSCRAPER, in theaters on July 13. So I’ll skip it, but I’ll probably suggest my husband get some friends together to see it. Because I’m pretty sure that’s what his heart will want.
TAKE THE KIDS TO IT: I haven’t seen the first two Hotel Transylvania movies. Are they good? I don’t even know. But since we’re going on vacation this month, I know we’ll probably end up in a theater with my girls — and that means we’ll be seeing HOTEL TRANSYLVANIA 3: SUMMER VACATION.
ALSO PLAYING: Until I started researching for this post, I hadn’t heard of SORRY TO BOTHER YOU or PUZZLE. But after watching the trailers, I’m intrigued by both. SORRY TO BOTHER YOU (in theaters 7/6) is about a black telemarketer who only finds career success when he starts using a “white” voice. The movie looks whimsical and a little weird, and it’s categorized as sci-fi. I don’t really know how to describe it; just watch the preview.
PUZZLE (in theaters 7/13) is about a woman who is bored with her life and finds meaning in a puzzle competition. I haven’t read any reviews yet, but the trailer (you can watch it here) had me glued to my screen.
SEE IT: I have some reading to do before August! I’ve heard great things about both CRAZY RICH ASIANS and THE DARKEST MINDS, and both trailers look fantastic, too.
CRAZY RICH ASIANS (8/17) is about a woman who goes to Singapore with her boyfriend and discovers that he comes from a super rich family. Who doesn’t exactly approve of her. It might just be a real, live romantic comedy! THE DARKEST MINDS (8/3) is based on a dystopian young adult novel about kids with superpowers. I’m hoping it leans more toward season one Heroes than any of the Divergent movies.
SKIP IT: If you’re looking for intense, August movies are for you. THE MEG (8/10) is about a giant shark and how Jason Statham fights it. And ALPHA (8/17) is about a boy who befriends a wolf in the Ice Age. Both previews stressed me out. These movies? Not for me.
TAKE THE KIDS TO IT: One of my all-time favorite movies is Hook. So the idea of CHRISTOPHER ROBIN (8/3), in which a man remembers the magic of his youth after reconnecting with fictional (or are they???) characters, appeals to me. And according to one article I wrote, this Disney movie will be for kids and adults alike. I’m waiting for more info before I make a choice for my own kids, though…
ALSO PLAYING: Did you say Bad Moms meets James Bond? Or perhaps the next best thing to a sequel to Melissa McCarthy’s Spy? Or maybe we just need a movie to watch on Girls Night Out before school starts?! THE SPY WHO DUMPED ME (8/3) stars Mila Kunis and Kate McKinnon as accidental spies of a sort, and it looks hilarious. I’ve literally made a note in my calendar to plan a GNO around this one!
For more summer movie previews, I recommend listening to Episode 244 of The Popcast with Knox and Jamie or the April 20 episode of NPR’s Pop Culture Happy Hour.
What summer movie are you most excited to see?
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