I want points for doing this in the middle of a business trip.
An investigative journalist heads this documentary (heavy with “dramatic recreations”) about the Joint Special Operations Command, or JSOC, which is the military group that pulls from all of the branches of the armed forces to handle top secret operations. Put it this way—the SEALs are part of JSOC. It should be a really fascinating topic—these men and women are the best of the best in field, air, and intelligence operations—but the focus is on how so many of the JSOC commandos are “erased” from military records and how it appears they have no oversight. This isn’t true—their commanding officer’s name is on Wikipedia for Christ’s sake—but I guess they figure it will make a sexy hook for a documentary. With friends in the military, though, including someone who often participates in JSOC operations, I find it a gross oversimplification.
Someone needs to tell Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson that they forgot to put jokes in their new movie.
Much Ado About Nothing
After wrapping The Avengers in 2011, Joss Whedon took a couple weeks, invited his friends over, and shot a black and white, modern adaptation of Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing in his home. Nothing about that sentence is not awesome.
I like this premise—America is experiencing unprecedented peace because one night a year, all crime is legal—but the trailer looks dodgy. Ethan Hawke and Lena Headey (Cersei Lannister!) star, but it seems kind of budget. Insidious was solid, though, and Hawke has reteamed with his producers for this follow up, so hopefully the sum total is better than this trailer is making it look.
Maybe dating Johnny Depp will help Amber Heard’s career. Because this movie certainly isn’t.
Violet & Daisy
Saoirse Ronan is carving out a niche playing tough but contained characters, first in Hanna and even the shitastic The Host, and now Violet & Daisy, the story of a couple of teenage assassins having trouble with their latest hit. I really like Ronan but I’d rather watch a Hanna sequel than this.
This is the End
Seth Rogen and his writing partner Evan Goldberg make their directing debuts with this end-of-the-world/alien invasion horror/comedy parody. It’s in the vein of Edgar Wright’s Cornetto Trilogy or Attack the Block and it stars a bunch of very funny people playing themselves. Even with a two day lead it’s going to get spanked by Man of Steel, but find time for This is the End. It’s super funny.
The Bling Ring
I just have no interest in anything Sofia Coppola does. I’m mildly curious to see post-Hermione Emma Watson but I feel like This is the End will scratch that itch for me, or I could revisit Perks of Being a Wallflower.
Man of Steel
It’s the first good Superman movie in like, 30 years. Or ever, if you’re like me and never particularly liked Superman, even in his Christopher Reeve heyday. But Man of Steel won me over in spite of my many misgivings. Henry Cavill was born to play the part and his Superman is matched by a towering Michael Shannon as Zod. It’s a great hero/villain matchup, easily the most satisfying since Christian Bale and Heath Ledger went toe to toe in The Dark Knight. Produced by Christopher Nolan—who reined in the worst of director Zack Snyder’s bad habits—Man of Steel is darker than, say, a Marvel movie, but it isn’t nearly as grim as Nolan’s Batman movies.
So many of you are going to develop a serious Henry Cavill problem.
It’s a prequel to Monsters Inc. and it’s going to make a ton of money and it’s pretty funny, actually, but I still feel like Pixar is killing time until they launch another run of original titles, like the movie about dinosaurs. A Pixar movie about dinosaurs! C’mon. You’re already into it.
World War Z
I’ve pretty much given up on this and am just hoping it doesn’t actively make me sad.
Neil Jordan’s long-delayed vampire movie, starring Gemma Arterton and Saoirse Ronan, finally arrives, but reviews are mixed bordering on bad. At least it’s got Ronan, in yet another tough teen role?
Sandra Bullock is an uptight FBI agent, recycling her Miss Congeniality character, and Melissa McCarthy is a slovenly cop, expanding on her cameo in The Hangover Part III. It’s a buddy cop comedy featuring female law enforcement officers and starring two actresses I like and I wish it looked better than this.
Jason Statham + European crime syndicate + revenge plot = pretty much every Jason Statham movie you’ve ever seen.
White House Down
It looks completely preposterous and I fully own how dumb it is but I totally want to see this. This is like the epitome of mindlessly awesome summer entertainment. Like, Michael Bay is White House Down’s spirit animal.