Tuesday, June 01, 2010

The Suckiest Movie Summer Ever?

You may have noticed that this blog hasn't reviewed several of the major summer releases such as ROBIN HOOD, SHREK FOREVER AFTER, SEX AND THE CITY 2, and PRINCE OF PERSIA: THE SANDS OF TIME

That's because I haven't been able to build up enough interest to see those movies. I don't like to judge films before I see them, but this summer's crop appears to be one of the most questionable array of films ever lined up for a supposed event season. The reviews for the films I mentioned above have been extremely mixed with SEX AND THE CITY 2 particularly taking a beating - one critic (Kyle Smith, New York Post) hilariously called it "Bitchtar" - so I haven't felt so far like I'm missing much. 

I don't consider myself a snob about mainstream multiplex movies. I enjoyed IRON MAN 2 and thought MACGRUBER had a fair share of laughs in it, but I can't seem to get excited about the others, nor upcoming films like MARMADUKE, SPLICE, JONAH HEX, KILLERS, or KNIGHT AND DAY. Likewise the remakes or re-boots or re-whatever's - THE A-TEAM, THE KARATE KID, and PREDATORS (Wow! With SPLICE that's 2 Adrien Brody wannabe blockbusters - that's rare). 

It's a tried and true tradition, of course, that the summer is filled with expensive mindless spectacle aimed at teenagers, and film buffs will have to wade through it to get to the fall which will be full of prestige Oscar bait. It just feels like this summer is much harder going than usual. The only thing that would make it worse is if there was another lackluster PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN sequel, but don't worry I'm sure that's what I'll be bitching about next summer. 

August is usually when some more interesting releases get dumped. In previous years great movies such as SUPERBAD, TROPIC THUNDER, and INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS have made the end of the summer a better place than the beginning, and this year Edgar Wright's SCOTT PILGRIM VS. THE WORLD looks like it could fit the bill. 

Until then there's the possibility that Pixar could pull us through with TOY STORY 3 and Universal's DESPICABLE ME also could be animation salvation. I'm sure that there are some other gems hiding in between the weekly bombast of dreck so I'm keeping my eyes open. 

I'm also open to suggestions so if you've got any - lay 'em on me. To answer this post's title question: It's too early to really tell and I'm pretty sure there have been suckier summers - 2002 comes to mind - but this one sure looks to be shaping up as a contender. 

C'mon something, anything - Christopher Nolan's INCEPTION maybe - surprise me! Post note: There are a few smaller films (read: independent and Foreign) that I'm looking forward to - Todd Solonz's LIFE DURING WARTIME and Jean-Pierre Jeunet's MICMACS. Check back for reviews of those. 

More later...


Anonymous said...

Before anything, I just want to say that Micmacs is great fun. Anyways, I just wanted to tell you that you may be harsh on one of the films that you mention: Splice. I haven't seen it yet, but I was excited for it before the trailers and stuff came out. The adverts TRY to push it as a sci-fi blockbuster, but in reality, I don't think it is. This is a film from a small Canadian director named Vincenzo Natali. I would suggest that you watch his two earlier films, Cube and Nothing. They may change your mind towards Splice.

Daniel Cook Johnson said...

Hey - You're right that I may be unfairly looping SPLICE in with the summer sludge. I've only seen 30 second TV spots for it and that's definitely not enough to go on. I will check out Natali's earlier works - thanks for the suggestions. I'll keep my mind more open about SPLICE, but as I've said - this summer that's difficult.

Darren said...

I don't know. I'm digging the retro eighties vibe going on with The Expendables, Machete and Predators. Not, surprisingly enough, the A-Team though.

I think this is a relatively sequel and superhero-lite summer, which is a bit of a change from the past couple of years. Sure, there's nothing really original (except Inception), but it's a "classic" blockbuster summer, I think.

Chief Brody said...

Predators will hopefully turn this year around. Wishful thinking? Maybe.

Anonymous said...

seems like everyone feels the same way about this summer line-up.

Anonymous said...

A good film is a rare find these days. And by "days" I mean years. Woody Allen has even lost his way in the film world. His familiar and successful writing prowess is gone and Altman is dead. There was a time when a fan would follow and anticipate a new film by your fave director. That's gone for now, so it's a good time to look to the past to fulfill the summer drought.