Cross Your Fingers, Part 1

Humby posted a list of the Top 10 movies he’s most looking forward to this summer. [LINK]. I started making a similar list, but there’s not a lot I’m excited about right now. Hollywood may be improving at creating films with substance, but they’ve become lazy and sloppy when crafting popcorn flicks. (A third FAST & FURIOUS?!?)

Instead of a counterlist to Humby’s list, I’ll handicap a film’s chances of sucking or succeeding. (I’ll cover through June now, and tackle the rest of summer at a later date.)

Currently the summer film I’m most looking forward to. (Although PIRATES 2 is a close second.) I honestly don’t care how crazy Tom Cruise is, as long as it stays out of the final product. Being a big fan of “Alias” and “Lost”, I’m very excited to see what director J.J. Abrahams is bringing to the party. And Phillip Seymour Hoffman is at the perfect point in his career to play a menacing villain. He could do for M:I 3 what Nicholson did for BATMAN.

POSEIDON (May 12th)
A remake from director Wolfgang Peterson who knows a lot about blockbusters set in the water (PERFECT STORM, DAS BOOT) as well as expensive films that will probably make more overseas than here. (TROY). I feel like this will be a fairly bland shot down the middle…not very fresh or even eye-popping, but large in scope and passable.

Tom Hanks and director Ron Howard are both coming off of surprising disappointments (THE TERMINAL and CINDERELLA MAN). I don’t expect them to stay down, especially with a movie based on a book that I believe outsold the entire Harry Potter series. I’m one of the 5 who hasn’t read it, but the film looks good enough. I’m interested in the clues and Paul Bettany as a super creepy albino.

This year’s MADAGASCAR (and remember how successful THAT film was.) CARS comes in with Pixar’s perfect track record, but this looks like a better film.

Audiences (and this is an understatement) l-o-v-e the X-MEN films. Unfortunately, when Bryan Singer left for Metropolis, he threw the entire franchise into peril. Hiring Brett Ratner to direct and attempting to cram in about three major storylines has left all fans biting their fingernails. The trailers gave hope, but a recently released clip seems to confirm that our worst fears for the series are going to come true.

THE BREAK-UP (June 2nd)
Vince Vaughn saved WEDDING CRASHERS, and he may do the same here. The film looks fairly bad when focusing away from Vaughn and Jennifer Aniston, but their banter may make this worth checking out. Probably not a good movie, but there could be enough fun scenes.

THE OMEN (June 6th)
The only clever thing is the release date (6/6/06, which many don’t get when they see the billboards.) This looks to be overly faithful to the original movie, minus a great deal of star charisma.

CARS (June 9th)
Pixar’s track record is near perfect. (4 of their 6 films were in my Top 3 of their year.) The film will do well on trust, but I have yet to meet anyone who thinks it looks more than just okay. I’d love to be proven wrong, but I guess everyone has to falter sometime.

NACHO LIBRE (June 16th)
I like Jack Black best when he’s completely unhinged. (SCHOOL OF ROCK is one of the most rewatchable comedies of recent years.) However, this is from the director of NAPOLEON DYNAMITE, which I hated. I still don’t get its humor or understand its success. The trailer looked terrible, and when I found out who the director was, it suddenly became clear.

Everyone expects big things from this, possibly the biggest film of the summer. I’m hoping for a fresh take on the Superman legend, (much like last year’s revival of Batman.) It could be because, while I like Supes, he’s not a very interesting hero. (A little too square-jawed for my tastes.) Everything looks respectful so far, but I’m hoping for a little more irreverence in the stew.


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