The snow piles have evaporated, the sun shines more often and you’re wearing fewer layers of clothing with each passing day. It could mean only one thing: summer movie season is upon us! Yes, it’s time to order your advance tickets, save your appetite for a tub of buttery popcorn and head into a dim theater.
What, did you think we were going to tell you it’s time to hit the beach? If so, you’re reading the wrong website!
But if you want to know what summer flicks AiPT!’s resident cinephiles are excited to see (and not so psyched about), you’re in the right place. So without further ado…
Most Excited to See: War for the Planet of the Apes (July 14)
While I’m looking forward to Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 and cautiously optimistic about Spider-Man: Homecoming, I feel like War for the Planet of the Apes will satisfy – and surprise – me the most. I’m a longtime Apes film fan and was blown away by Dawn of the Planet of the Apes and its look at the rise and fall of Caesar’s utopian primate society. With director Matt Reeves back at the helm and a story that promises all-out war between the evolving ape army and the remnants of the human species, how can this film possibly disappoint? I’m ready to go ape!
Least Excited to See: Transformers: The Last Knight (June 23)
Speaking of disappointment … Michael Bay has another Transformers film ready for us! For the record, I’ve never enjoyed a live-action Transformers film (the animated 1980s feature, on the other hand, is incredible). So why am I going to see what’s sure to be a loud, confusing and excruciating mess of a movie? Devotion to the Transformers brand, I’m afraid. Yes, I know, I’m enabling Michael Bay by buying a ticket. But at least this is his last one … right? He said so. I mean, it’s not like he hasn’t said he was done before…
Most Excited to See: Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (May 5)
I think it’s safe to say this could be one of the best years for movie blockbusters in some time. I’m most excited to see Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 for obvious reasons (Marvel can’t lose, the cast is fantastic, early buzz is very positive). It also looks like the most fun to be had at the theaters this year. Given the political climate, a lot of us need complete escapism and I think this is it.
Least Excited to See: The Lego Ninjago Movie (September 22)
I’d say Transformers, but there’s no way in hell I’d even consider seeing that after hating the second one and never looking back. I pick Lego Ninjago Movie partly because I wasn’t blown away by Lego Batman and I’m not certain these Lego movies are must see affairs … yet. Sure this comes out on the last day of summer, but I think it counts!
Most Excited to See: Alien: Covenant (May 19)
I thought Prometheus was the best Alien-verse flick since Aliens, so I’m hoping that Covenant continues this face-hugging coolness streak! Psyched to again see Ridley Scott behind camera and Michael Fassbender in front of camera. The more new and amazing Alien films we get, the quicker we can forget the two Alien Vs Predator duds!
Least Excited to See: Baywatch (May 25)
This one looks like pure Redbox fodder and I wish this trend of rebooting/reworking/reheating old TV series into films would die off. I’ll be slow-motion running to every other film at the multiplex.
Most Excited to See: Baby Driver (June 28)
Controversial Opinion: Edgar Wright is the most underappreciated comedy screenwriter of the modern era. I feel that way, fight me. Anyway, Baby Driver looks to be one of Wright’s more ambitious efforts to date. Though, yes, it may be the writer’s most action-oriented script, but I’m more interested in the synergy of music as a separate character in the film. The trailer looks action-packed, funny, and like a great time at the movies. Plus it has the best form of Jamie Foxx – crazy-eyed, scenery chewing Jamie Foxx.
Least Excited to See: The Emoji Movie (July 28)
Yes, this is a real thing. Yes it has actual stars you’ve heard of. Sir Patrick Stewart is playing the shit Emoji. All of these sentences are true. The only saving grace is that maybe Cthulu or another of the elder gods will return to lay waste to humanity before this blight can be unleashed on the world of the living.
Most Excited to See: Wonder Woman (June 2)
I’m excited to see Wonder Woman because it’s DC and Warner Bros.’ last chance to get the DC Cinematic Universe back on track. If this film doesn’t work, don’t let Justice League hit theaters. It’s remarkable to me that a character like Wonder Woman, who has been around for 75 years, is getting her first movie after Suicide Squad and other B-list characters from other publishers. Gal Gadot was surprisingly the best part of Batman v. Superman (other than that part where she literally sat and watched trailers for the other upcoming DC movies), so hopefully she can carry a film on her own. The film is also set during World War I, which is rarely used for films of any kind, never mind comic book movies.
Least Excited to See: Cars 3 (June 16)
I used to be so excited for Pixar movies, but it takes way too much energy to even pretend to be excited for Cars 3. The first two Cars films are among the most pedestrian in the Pixar library, with the second one as the studio’s worst film. Maybe Cars 3 can wow us, but I’m not betting on it. Unlike the Toy Story franchise, I have no desire to spend another two hours with Lightning McQueen and Mater.
Most Excited to See: Spider-Man: Homecoming (July 5)
After the lackluster Amazing Spider-Man series, which had nothing going for it except for the great chemistry between its romantic leads and a Spider-Man director literally named “Webb,” what excites me most about this latest reboot is the unprecedented corporate synergy. Watching Disney and Sony play nice and come together to do right by this beloved character; letting him co-exist with the Kevin Feige MCU and interact with Iron Man fills me with the kind of childish glee I felt watching The Lego Movie.
Least Excited to See: Alien: Covenant (May 19)
I’d originally gone with Justice League until it was pointed out that it’s not a summer movie, so I’m going instead with Alien: Covenant. I feel like I’m done with this franchise. The first two are classics. I’ve never bothered to see the next two. Then I had high hopes that Ridley Scott’s return to the franchise would restore the series’ luster. Sadly, however, that gave us Prometheus, the film I would come to refer to as “The Worst Film of 2012.” My three-word review of that film moments after leaving the theater was “Pretty, but dumb.” That was an understatement in both regards as Prometheus was, at times, visually stunning but featured some of the most dreadful writing I can recall seeing in a film not involving Tommy Wiseau. Then there’s the early released footage from Alien Covenant that just looks like a retread of the original’s formula of blue collar people going on a space mission that’s supposed to be smooth sailing until an alien or aliens attack, killing them off one by one — a formula, I might add, that at least looked from the trailers to have already been aped earlier this year by a completely different movie, Life. The first two films in the series are beloved sci-fi classics, but I just don’t think there’s anything interesting left to mine in the franchise. I’m done with it.
Most Excited to See: Spider-Man: Homecoming (July 7)
It’s great to see Spider-Man in the MCU. We finally get him bouncing off our favorite Marvel characters, and Tony Stark is the perfect early sparring partner. We’re back in high school, where Stan Lee says he should have left him, with a renewed emphasis on Peter’s daily tribulations and romantic entanglements. And no Goblins!
All that’s great, but do you know why I’m really excited for this movie? To see the same self-righteous, anti-superhero Michael Keaton from Birdman with a non-ironic beak on his fucking face. The machine always wins!
Least Excited to See: Amityville: The Awakening (June 30)
Wait, what? One movie based on a “true” story (that was more or less a hoax) wasn’t enough? We need a whole series of these things? I can only assume this is the unholy union of The Purge and those asinine ghost hunter TV shows who think the best way to find something is to turn all the lights off.
I’ll be following suit, so instead of watching this movie, I’ll be sitting at home, alone in the dark, listening to static on a tape recorder and trying to parse out random messages through pareidolia. It’ll probably have a more coherent plot.
Those are the films the AiPT! staff is thinking about, but what about you? Let us know what your summer movie picks are in the comment space below!