2013 summer preview

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Article by Teddy Durgin

Of course, I am chomping at the bit to see this summers big, BIG summer movies! This is definitely the summer of sequels, prequels and follow-ups with the continuing adventures of Iron Man, Superman, Wolverine and the crew of the Starship Enterprise. The Wolfpack is back for another Hangover misadventure, Vin Diesels Fast and the Furious crew look to have one more heist in em and even the Lone Ranger rides again. Consequently, even the non-franchise pictures are going bigger and bolder to compete. Brad Pitts World War Z will try to be the ultimate zombie movie, Pacific Rim features giant robots battling giant monsters and even Jay Gatsby is coming to screens in Real-D 3-D. But I am a lover of all movies. And the summer box office has proven to be the perfect place to counter-program in recent years. As much as I get up for a new Star Wars or Star Trek, I have equally fond memories of discovering such past summer sleepers such as Little Miss Sunshine, Midnight in Paris and 500 Days of Summer. Looking ahead to the coming hazy, hot and humid months, these are 10 less-heralded flicks I am looking forward to seeing just as much as Star Trek Into Darkness and Monsters University. Keep in mind, because these are smaller releases, the below release dates are extremely subject to change. Also, some of these films are so small, they could be released in New York, Chicago and Los Angeles on the dates listed ... but Baltimore may not get em til several weeks after, if at all. Nevertheless, here is my list: 1) The Bling Ring - Spring Breakers and Pain & Gain have attempted to mine box office gold by telling visually flashy, yet dramatically inert stories of beautiful people doing really bad things. Here, Sofia Coppola tries to go the same route and shes slutting Hermione herself (Emma Watson) in the process. The film is based on a true story of a group of brand-obsessed L.A. teens who were busted a few years back for heisting $3 million worth of goods from upscale homes. And, yes, Paris Hilton cameos as herself. (June 14) 2) In a World - The very pretty Lake Bell aspires to be a professional voiceover artist. Why didnt I meet girls like this when I was single?! (Aug. 9) 3) Kevin Hart: Let Me Explain - Lately, the very funny comedian has been doing a lot of explaining following his recent DUI arrest. This ones less a concert film a la Eddie Murphy Raw and more of a concert tour documentary, showing Hart taking his act to Madison Square Garden and other U.S. venues as well overseas. The group beer bike ride in the films trailer looks hilarious. (July 3) 4) The Kings of Summer - This one received rave reviews at this past years Sundance Film Festival. Its also the first of several indie-flavored, coming-of-age stories due to hit screens in the next three or four months. Kings follows three teenage friends who decide to run away, build a treehouse in the woods and live free. I give it until the films 35-minute mark before they realize that raccoons and squirrels are no substitute for pom-pom girls. (May 31, early June in Baltimore) 5) Lovelace - Amanda Seyfried is getting some early raves for her portrayal of 70s porn star Linda Lovelace in this indie biopic. Its sad Lovelaces Deep Throat co-star Harry Reems didnt live to see this film. Its also sad that I know the name Harry Reems but still cannot name all the members of the Supreme Court. (Aug. 9) 6) Now You See Me - I love the concept of this crime thriller about a group of Las Vegas magicians who use their skills of illusion to pull off elaborate bank heists. Even more, I love the cast for this film with Zombieland co-stars Jesse Eisenberg and Woody Harrelson pairing up with Dark Knight co-stars Morgan Freeman and Michael Caine. Mark Ruffalo is also featured as the intrepid FBI agent obsessed with learning how they are pulling off their crimes. (May 31) 7) Only God Forgives - Ryan Gosling re-teams with his Drive director Nicolas Winding Refn in what looks like bloody-as-Hell gangster and boxing flick set in Thailand. Ive heard Kristin Scott Thomas could steal the summer as Goslings domineering mother. (July 19) 8) The To Do List - Here is the second coming-of-age story I am looking forward to this summer. What can I say? When I was a kid, I cut my teeth on flicks like Meatballs and Losin It. The hook in this one? Instead of the usual teenage boy trying to lose his virginity, its a teenage girl (Aubrey Plaza of TVs Parks and Recreation). The film was written and directed by a woman (Maggie Carey), which should declaw some of the films detractors who will surely object to the main plot. (Aug. 16) 9) Twenty Feet From Stardom - I always try and include one straight-up documentary on this annual list, and this one has me intrigued. Its seeks to shine a spotlight on the immensely talented back-up singers who have lent their voices to everyone from Bruce Springsteen to Mick Jagger. (June 14) 10) The Way Way Back - If I was doing this list in order of movies I most want to see, this would be my No. 1. Yes, it is the THIRD coming-of-age movie on this list. But it also charmed at Sundance ... so much so that Fox Searchlight paid a near-record $10 million for the rights to distribute it. Liam Janes stars as an awkward teenage boy who goes to work at a water park for the summer and looks to break out of his shell. Steve Carrell, Toni Collette, and Sam Rockwell co-star. (July 5)


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