Fives movies you should probably go see

The summer silver screen releases that actually excite us.

By Jon Turner
[contributor]

The World’s End (August 23)

The third film in the so-called “Three Cornettos Trilogy”, based on the entirely irrelevant flavours of ice-cream consumed by the protagonists, The World’s End looks to send up the current crop of post-apocalyptic cinema with the same combination of love and satire as its predecessors, Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz, did for the genres of horror and action. The plot follows a group of unattractive, thickly-accented alcoholics (i.e. English people) whose attempt to re-enact a failed pub crawl from their youth is upended by an inconvenient alien invasion.

Why we’re excited:

Rumour has it the final Cornetto flavour is mint-chocolate. Will this prove the key to demolishing the alien menace, or will it be exploited for cheap comedic effect? Probably both.

Man of Steel (June 18)

Man of Steel is DC’s attempt to reinvigorate their premier superhero franchise with an exciting, gritty reboot. With an award-winning cast including Amy Adams, Kevin Costner, Russell Crowe, and Henry Cavill as the big S, the film will be an ambitious two-and-a-half hour epic focusing on the origin and personal journey of Earth’s first superhero. While ambition alone isn’t enough, the film also boasts the combined writing talents of David S. Goyer and Christopher Nolan, who wrote a trilogy of critically acclaimed films that you may have heard about starring a certain moody, socially awkward billionaire. At the helm is veteran comics-to-film visionary Zack Snyder, who, when he’s not futzing around with overblown CGI male wish-fulfillment fantasies or talking owls, is sure to bring his preternatural understanding of stylish action scenes to the film.

Why we’re excited:

Michael Shannon as an intransigent alien overlord? Sign me up!

Pacific Rim (July 12)

Writer/director Guillermo del Toro returns to his particular brand of big-budget philosophical sci-fi with Pacific Rim, his personal love letter to Lovecraftian horror tropes and Japanese action flicks. Inter-dimensional aliens have emerged from the Pacific Ocean, and for some reason, the government’s solution is to psychically link pilots with gigantic, unwieldy, and shockingly cost-inefficient mechanized exoskeletons (known as Jaegers) so they can punch them to death. With a strong stable of character actors like Ron Perlman, Idris Elba, and Charlie Hunnam (of Sons of Anarchy fame) and an effusive display of spectacular CGI, the film seems to know exactly what it’s after with an incredibly sincere confidence.

Why we’re excited:

Ellen McLain, known for her role as the sinister yet sarcastic GLaDOS of the Portal games will provide the voice of the Jaegers’ AI.

Monsters University (June 21)

Despite the weaker-than-expected reception of their last two features, Pixar remains a synonym for animated perfection, and their latest effort is unlikely to modify that well-earned association. Returning as James P. Sullivan and Mike Wazowski are John Goodman and Billy Crystal respectively, as well as Steve Buscemi as Randall. When the two young monsters arrive at the same fraternity, their intense dislike of one another leads them into a mess of trouble, but their respect for each other grows until they presumably are on good enough terms to sign on for a sequel ten years later. This will be director Dan Scanlon’s first feature film; prior to this, he directed the short film Mater and the Ghostlight. Expect a funny, heartwarming tale about the troubles of college-aged youth.

Why we’re excited:

Okay, it’s not technically part of the film, but the Blue Umbrella short preceding the feature will be Pixar’s first foray into photorealistic animation.

Kick-Ass 2 (August 16)

With the underground success of the first Kick-Ass quietly simmering in the comic-nerd collective consciousness, it’s safe to say that many audiences have been waiting a long time to sit in a dark theatre and watch a small girl violently disembowel a series of a criminals. The sequel, starring Aaron Taylor-Johnson as the titular ass-kicker, Chloë Grace Moretz as Hit-Girl, Christopher Mintz-Plasse as The Mother Fucker, also employs the twisted comedic talents of Jim Carrey. The plot follows Kick-Ass as he confronts the influence of his popularity, which has spawned a group of rival superhero teams seeking exclusive rights to dole out violent vigilantism. Overseeing the film’s undoubtedly brutal violence and black humour is relative newcomer Jeff Wadlow, who also wrote the screenplay.

Why we’re excited:

Jim Carrey’s sure to turn in a psychotic performance as the grizzled, sadistic Colonel Stars and Stripes.

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