Whether it is competitive, high-intensity internships, life-changing study-abroad opportunities, or anything in-between, CMC students maintain busy summer schedules. Ultimately, it is this pragmatic, professional mentality that makes CMC a special place. Yet that doesn’t mean things can’t get a little tight around the collar at times.
In light of this reality, I have compiled a list of ten movies that should provide some well-earned R&R this summer. While it is tempting to tell yourself that you’ll save time and money by just streaming it later via Netflix, do yourself a favor and try to make it to the theater a couple times—you won’t regret it.
GODZILLA – May 16th
With a star-studded cast headlined by Ken Watanabe (Letters from Iwo Jima, Inception) and Breaking Bad‘s Bryan Cranston, this $160-million film is poised to make a big box-office splash. Given that this story has obviously been portrayed countless times on the big screen, rookie director Gareth Edwards will have to walk a fine line to create an epic, innovative account of everyone’s favorite giant lizard.
EDGE OF TOMORROW – June 6th
Tom Cruise is one of Hollywood’s most polarizing figures for a variety of reasons that I am not even going to begin to delve into. Regardless of what you think of him, Cruise does have a proven track record of starring in blockbuster films (Minority Report, Mission Impossible franchise). However, as of late he has yielded an array of box-office mediocrity (Oblivion, Jack Reacher, etc.). While odds are this film will probably fall into that same category, audiences should at least give Cruise a chance to redeem himself.
DAWN OF THE PLANET OF THE APES – July 11th
This film’s predecessor, Rise of the Planet of the Apes (2011), was both a critical and box-office success. However, it doesn’t take a genius to realize that sequels are a dangerous prospect for almost any movie (The Godfather: Part II & The Matrix Reloaded are worthy exceptions). James Franco fans will be disappointed to learn that this film stars a fresh cast of Jason Clarke (Zero Dark Thirty, The Great Gatsby) and Gary Oldman (Dark Knight trilogy). Taking place 15 years following the events of its predecessor, this film looks to further reinvigorate a 1970s franchise formerly plagued by cheesy costumes and talking monkeys.
NEIGHBORS – May 9th
Although it is still premature to make overarching statements regarding this film’s quality, early critical reviews have been overwhelmingly positive. This is not too hard to believe, especially as the film pairs Seth Rogen with Zac Efron, polar opposites both in physical appearance and temperament. Dave Franco (yes, James Franco’s brother) will surely build upon his stellar performance in 21 Jump Street and continue to evolve as a Hollywood funnyman.
A MILLION WAYS TO DIE IN THE WEST – May 30th
Seth MacFarlane has expanded his horizons as of lately, having branched out beyond Family Guy into ventures including mainstream Hollywood films (such as Ted) and even hosting the Academy Awards. His most recent project, A Million Ways to Die in the West, appears to possess significant comedic poise, as the film brings together Hollywood action star Liam Neeson and How I Met Your Mother‘s Neil Patrick Harris (who, in my opinion, was the shining star of all the Harold & Kumar films).
22 JUMP STREET – June 13th
21 Jump Street took theaters by storm in 2012, generating enough critical and box-office success to immediately spur the production of a sequel. Jonah Hill, Channing Tatum, and Ice Cube all reprise their roles, with the film transitioning from a high school to a college setting. 21 Jump Street was successful due to the fact that it accurately and hilariously portrayed the realities and stereotypes of high school life. Hopefully, this sequel will be able to achieve the same level of comedic genius in the college context.
SEX TAPE – July 25th
Cameron Diaz and Jason Segel exhibited remarkable chemistry in the 2011 comedy Bad Teacher, which is exactly why Sex Tape could be a dark horse at the box office this summer. This film chronicles the frantic efforts of a married couple seeking to reclaim a personal sex tape that was accidentally uploaded to the cloud for all their friends to see. This movie has a refreshingly original premise, as the technological advances of the 21st century have certainly revolutionized even the most intimate aspects of people’s lives.
THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN 2 – May 2nd
To me, the original Spider-Man trilogy featuring Tobey Maguire will always be superior to this reboot starring The Social Network‘s Andrew Garfield. My disdain for this version could very well be rooted in the fact that these new plot lines stem from a different set of Spider-Man comic books. Personal feelings aside, this film will likely be superior to its predecessor, as the sequel will delve more deeply into Peter Parker’s personal life. Moreover, it will be interesting to see how the movie incorporates its vast array of villains, including Electro (played by Jamie Foxx), the Green Goblin, and even Rhino.
EXTENDED trailer here!
X-MEN: DAYS OF FUTURE PAST – May 23rd
Michael Fassbender (who plays young Magneto) and James McAvoy (who plays young Professor X) have together provided a much-needed face-lift to a film franchise that up until a few years ago was beginning to become a little too predictable. While the movie does bring back fan favorites such as Wolverine and Storm, Fassbender and McAvoy will continue to allow the X-Men franchise to evolve in a healthy, progressive manner.
THE PURGE: ANARCHY – July 18th
This sequel to The Purge (2013) is perhaps one of the biggest wild cards of the summer. Despite that its predecessor received generally negative reviews, the movie was a surprising box office success, ultimately meriting the production of a sequel. Personally, I find the film’s plot to be original and thought-provoking, as it is intellectually stimulating to ponder the moral conundrums associated with a designated day of the year in which all crimes are legal. Moreover, if this sequel is anything remotely like the first film, audiences will surely enjoy a high-octane treat sprinkled with a little bit of horror.