Saturday, May 31, 2014

Movies to See and Skip June (2014)

May was all about the blockbuster, but that's Summer now I guess.  I hate to say it but this May compared to last May looked a lot different.  Last year May had some great smaller films like Before Midnight, Frances Ha, and The Kings of Summer.  This year there was Belle, that's all that truly seems to fit in this category for "wide" release.  If you look at June its no better, in fact it gets worse.

With that said X-Men: Days of Future Past lived up to the hype, and was a fantastic film, I saw it three times, once for a free screening.  Neighbors was hilarious, although a lot of funniest parts were seen in the trailer.  Godzilla roared, and a sequel is on the way.

The Amazing Spider-Man 2 opened well, but is struggling to get to 200 million.  Check out my piece about the struggling franchise here (  I enjoy this franchise more, thanks in part to the strong emotional level elevating the material.

Now to the bombs, the movies listed above were the only ones to make over 100 million (so far) for the month, the rest barely cracked 20 million including another failure from Adam Sandler, Blended, and Disney showing white people as the saviors in Million Dollar Arm.

Maleficent and a A Million Ways to Die in the West open today.  Maleficent will probably be number one, following in the foot steps of Snow White and the Huntsmen, and Alice in Wonderland  MacFarlene's last film Ted was a surprise hit, but it was also good, and had excellent reviews.  Both of these have poor reviews, but it probably won't stop people from going this weekend.  Bad word of mouth could hurt both.

Now onto the films opening in June, and there are a lot more than I realized including Jersey Boys, have I missed the marketing?

June 6th 

The Edge of Tomorrow

I like Doug Liman he has directed The Bourne Identity, Go, Swingers, and Mr. and Mrs. Smith.  Early reviews are solid, not amazing.  I think the thing that is selling me is Liman as director.  Tom Cruise has made some underrated films, Oblivion was better than thought.  While I do not know that I will pay to see this, I was glad I saw Oblivion in theatres.  This may be worth the time.

The Fault in Our Stars

I was about half through the book when I left it on a plane.  I liked the book so far, and while I am not sure what the ending will be, I know I will probably cry.  Shailene Woodley is a talented young woman, and I have faith that this will be a strong adaptation.

(The Fault in Our Stars)

June 13th 

22 Jump Street 

I loved the original, it was truly funny surprising film.  It will be hard to match the surprise factor again.  I think the same will be true about Pitch Perfect 2. Capturing lightening in bottle twice is hard.  The preview is solid, but not great.  The same creative team is back, and they could easily bank off the on screen chemistry of Tatum and Hill to win me over.

How to Train Your Dragon 2 

One of the few animated/family films of the summer, the first was good, and word from Cannes is that this film continues that solid character development, which could honestly make this the must-see movie of the month.

(How to Train Your Dragon 2)

June 20th 

Think Like a Man Too

I enjoyed the first one, nothing Earth shattering, but a fun film.  This will do well at the box office, but I can't help but think this sequel machine is just so tedious.  The cast is talented though, and this movie is certainly better than anything Tyler Perry has cranked out.

Jersey Boys

I honestly had no idea this film was being released in June.  Clint Eastwood seems like an odd choice to direct this film, if a director with clout was going to take this on someone like Scorsese would have made more sense.  The music of Frankie Valley annoys as well, and breaking the fourth wall in the preview, this isn't House of Cards.  Looks bad.

Venus in Fur

One year after it showed at Cannes, the most recent Roman Polanski film had mixed reviews.  After listening to the Oscar podcast from it is sad to think that some films from that festival may take a year to get a release in the States, or never.  Fur could be interesting, Polanski is great.

Third Person 

What happened to the career of Oscar winner Paul Haggis?  Oscar back lash for Crash winning or is it that this former Facts of Life writer just can't cut it?  Haggis certainly does like those interlocking stories about humanity, and the cast is cool, so this one is up in the air, but I am leaning towards skip.

(Jersey Boys)

June 27th 

Transformers: Age of Extinction 

Since when does Mark Wahlberg replace Shia LeBeouf, usually would be the opposite right?  Just saw the preview for this before X-Men, and I can say with certainty that this franchise should be put to bed.


Must See: How to Train Your Dragon 2, 22 Jump Street, The Fault in Our Stars (In that Order) 
Must Skip: Transformers: Age of Extinction, Jersey Boys, Third Person (In that Order)

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