' ' Cinema Romantico: 10 Most Un-Summery Summer Movies To See This Summer

Thursday, May 01, 2014

10 Most Un-Summery Summer Movies To See This Summer

The Summer Movie Season Of 2013 was, to this fan of the artsy-fartsy, hipstery doo-dah, the greatest Summer Movie Season Of All-Time, and I’m not exaggerating. It was the Summer Movie Season of Sofia and Greta and Brit-B-Brit and Jesse & Celine and Sarah Polley’s Family and the ladies of “20 Feet From Stardom” and the righteous tentpole majesty of “White House Down” – #notashamed – and Lake Bell getting hers. It was The Summer Movie Season that literally concluded on the last weekend of August by granting me My Favorite Film Of The Year. I genuinely had no idea summer movies could be so grand.

Alas, ‘tis now the Summer Movie Season Of 2014, and circumstances have swung considerably. Consulting the releases over the course of the next few months leaves me despondent with a forecast of further melancholy. Superheroes and more superheroes and more superheroes and giant robots and ninja turtles and Adam Sandler (but I repeat myself) and extra “Expendables” on top of the original “Expendables” who seem to completely contradict their own name by CONTINUALLY SHOWING UP FOR MORE MOVIES and refusing to extend an invite to Angelina Jolie because they TOTALLY KNOW SHE'D SHOW THEM UP and Lake Bell being rewarded for writing, directing and starring in one of the 2013’s best films by being arm candy for Jon Hamm in “Million Dollar Arm” because HOLLYWOOD LITERALLY HAS NO IDEA WHAT TO DO WITH WOMEN UNLESS THEY JUST DO IT THEIR DAMN SELVES. (Breathing into a bag.)

Lake Bell: "Okay. So. I had this idea for a really intense chamber piece where three women-"  Hollywood: "Woah. Hold yer horses there, Lake. We were thinking, what if instead you were the Love Interest in 'Million Dollar Arm' and we put you in a Sari?"
This is what we do, right? We moan. We groan. We gripe. Movies suck. They don’t make ‘em like they used to. Hollywood is awful. Earth is evil. The Universe is just a big fat poopy head. I’m playing right into the stereotype of the jaded film critic. Like those fussy dudes at The New Yorker, right? Everyone hates those guys cuz they hate everything. Except Richard Brody wrote the following: “The year 2013 has been an amazing one for movies, though maybe every year is an amazing year for movies if one is ready to be amazed by movies.” And it’s amazing how many people who probably think the film critics at The New Yorker hate everything are more than likely never ready to be amazed by the movies. They are more than likely ready to point out how that ketchup bottle wasn’t in the previous shot and now it is and this movie is LIES!!!!!!!!!!

Well, I want to be amazed. I do. And so I stopped with the woe-is-me and then I started looking around, and I started finding all sorts of potential diamonds in the sweaty, humidified, summery rough. Here then is the most un-summery summer movie preview on the Internet. Though I should advise, the majority of these films might not make to your town right away, if they make it to your own (heck, my town) at all. Nevertheless. (Release dates and release areas are noted in parentheses to give you a better understanding of what you’re not going to be able to see in which case you may have to go see “X Men: Days Of Future Past In The Present Indicative Tense”.)

10 Most Un-Summery Summer Movies To See This Summer 

God’s Pocket (May 9, limited release)

Even if this hadn't turned out to be one of Philip Seymour Hoffman's last efforts, I'd still have been gung-ho to see it. 

The Immigrant (May 16 in NY and LA)

In certain circles, this is as big as “The Dark Knight Rises.” Perhaps you’re not in those circles, perhaps you’re not even aware those circles exist, and that’s fine. But I’m in those circles. And I’m FREAKING OUT! 

The Love Punch (May 23, limited)

Pierce Brosnan and Emma Thompson are a retired couple out to get what’s owed them. “Jonathan! Bring me my green light!” 

Night Moves (May 30, limited)

It’s the latest from the hella realist Kelly Reichardt, an eco-thriller, and the buzz on the festival circuit last year was considerable if not deafening. Also, it provides me the perfect excuse to offer two "30 Rock" hyperlinks in a row (with a Katy Perry hyperlink tossed in just because). #ThisIsHowWeDo 


 We interrupt this listicle to bring you The Godzilla Reboot (Reboot) Cast Power Rankings! Because This Godzilla Cast Is SO COOL! 

The Godzilla Reboot (Reboot) Cast Power Rankings

10. Ken Watanabe. I like Watanabe but I feel like this is the one place where they didn't get off the beaten path.
9. Aaron Taylor-Johnson. From Kick Ass to Vronsky to one-third of Blake Lively's ménage à trios to screaming and running away from Godzilla. Dude keeps you guessing. Respect.
8. Sean Bean. Whoops! Sorry! I'm confusing "Godzilla" with "Jupiter Ascending"! But don't you agree that Sean Bean should have been in this as a big game hunter gone rogue trying to tag the beast?
7. David Straithairn. This reminds me, I'd like to see a John Sayles-scripted "Godzilla." I imagine it would focus less on Godzilla itself and more on frustrated Tokyo building contractors. 
6. Victor Rasuk. I do recall watching "Raising Victor Vargas" and wondering: "Hmmm. How would Victor Vargas react to a Godzilla attack?" 
5. Elizabeth Olsen. The most unlikely female lead in a gargantuan summer blockbuster since Sienna Miller starred as Black Mascara, the winsome shit-talking villain of the old Confound Comics whose costume was skinny jeans and runny black mascara and whose superpower was a combination of cigarette-smoke and scotch breath that could paralyze a person. (Or did I dream that?) 
4. Richard T. Jones. Cuz this dude's the starting two-guard on the Oh! I Know That Guy I Just Don't Know His Name! All-Stars. 
3. Juliette Binoche. She's only # 3 because, really, once you act opposite Dane Cook, holding your own against Godzilla seems less like a sell-out than a relief. 
2. Bryan Cranston. If I had one wish this summer movie season it would be that "Godzilla's" ultimate reveal is that Cranston's character is actually Tim Whatley.
1. Sally Hawkins. It's always nice to have a rooting interest in a disaster movie and I am totally hitching my star to Sally's wagon. Survive, Sally. Survive. 


The Fault In Our Stars (June 6)

It stars the Shailene-ster. What else do you need to know? It’s a mainstream release. It’ll be in your city. Just go. 

Life’s A Breeze (June 13, limited)

This modern-day Irish treasure hunt had a showing at the Siskel Center in March and I had to miss it. I won't miss it this time. By which I mean, I'll wait for it to be released on Netflix and watch it then.

Can A Song Save Your Life? (July 4)

This film, John Carney’s much anticipated follow-up to the stellar “Once”, has been re-titled “Begin Again” because, of course, all summer movie titles are required per Hollywood Law to possess no more than five words lest confused patrons think they’re stumbling into an art film. Cinema Romantico, however, refuses to honor the title “Begin Again” and will continue calling it “Can A Song Save Your Life?”, kind of like how a certain sect of Chicagoans stubbornly refuse to refer to the Sears Tower as the Willis Tower Because bitch, please. Wait. Where was I? Right. “Can A Song Save Your Life?” The reviews have been mixed, but this worries me not. After all, I can verify with 100% clarity that a song can save your life. And not a single person on this earth nor a single alien in the night sky can tell me any different. 


We interrupt this listicle to ask the most pertinent single question of the Summer Movie Season. That is: How Many Funny Lines Will Rose Byrne Actually Be Allowed To Deliver In "Neighbors"? 

 My guess? One. Well, like, half of one. Maybe. Because maybe they cut her half of one funny line in post. Because they had to make room for Seth Rogen's nineteenth "Hey, everybody! I smoke pot!" joke.


Land Ho! (July 11, NY and LA)

Aaron Katz’s follow-up to Cinema Romantico’s #1 Movie Of 2011 that earned a few jaw-dropping raves outta Sundance. I will hitchhike to Manhattan to see this if that’s what it comes to. 

Mood Indigo (July 18, limited)

A Michel Gondry film in which Audrey Tatou becomes the literal living embodiment of a Duke Ellington song. Which perfectly fits with my recurring dream where I meet a woman who becomes a literal living embodiment of Kathleen Edwards' "12 Bellevue." 

The Two Faces of January (August 8, limited)

Kirsten Dunst stars. And as a Dunst Completist, I have to see it. To quote Coach Norman Dale, "I apologize for nothing."


Anonymous said...

pretty nice blog, following :)

Alex Withrow said...

Love your intro. I hadn’t heard that Brody quote before, but that’s pretty spot on. I’m really excited for The Immigrant, God’s Pocket and particularly Night Moves. Kelly Reichardt is a fiercely unique filmmaker and I adore her work.

The Fault In Our Stars – Yep, Shailene is the only reason I need.