The Summer movie season is now
underway! Iron Man got things off
to a very strong start by being arguably the best superhero adaptation since Spider-man 2.
The successful release of Iron Man is reminiscent of grand
reception that the first Spider-man
film got back in May of 2002 – one of those rare instances in summer movie-going
where everyone (film critics, fanboys and the general public) seems pleased
with the final product.
The same cannot be said for Speed
Racer, which is a much harder
sell than something like Iron Man. This opening weekends box office returns
suggest that Speed Racer may have to
wait until its DVD release in order to find an audience.
That is a real shame, because
its probably the most visually unique blockbuster well be getting this summer
(at least until Guillermo Del Toros Hellboy
II opens in July). More importantly,
its lots of fun to watch. I urge anybody reading this to pay no attention to
the bad reviews and even worse box office. Do yourself a favor and catch and
catch Speed Racer in Imax while you
still have the chance.
Indiana Jones and The Castle of
the Crystal Skull has been suffering from some bad buzz as of late. Word
of mouth emanating from early screenings has been
somewhat less than encouraging, but Im not worried.
Every Summer movie season has at
least one highly-anticipated blockbuster that ends up paying the price for
overblown expectations. Im sure Indiana
Jones 4 will be just fine, as long as we all keep our expectations in
We have a couple of updates from
our first Preview Approved column in February. Righteous Kill starring Robert DeNiro, Al Pacino and 50 Cent
was originally slated to come out in April, but was moved to a September
release. LL Cool Js appearance in The
Deal will be delayed further, as its overseas debut will be in August
now. Still no word on a U.S. release date.
All that said, its been an
interesting ride so far this year, and theres still more to come. We still
have a few more superhero films coming our way before August – The
Hulk on June 13, Wanted on June 27, Hancock
on July 2, Hellboy II: The Golden Army on July 11 and The Dark Knight on July
Here are three movies we’d like to highlight this time around:
Based on the comic book series
by award winning comic writer Mark Millar, Wanted
tells the story of office drone Wesley Gibson (James McAvoy). Gibsons
mundane existence takes a turn toward the fantastic when he is recruited into
an organization of super assassins and is given the chance to avenge the murder
of his father, who was also an assassin.
The mysterious organization is
led by a man named Sloan (Morgan
Freeman), who was Gibsons fathers partner. Under the tutelage of Sloan second-in-command
Fox (Angelina Jolie), Gibson becomes
an efficient killer.
Keep an eye out for everyones
favorite bohemian Common in his role
as the Gunsmith, a character who trains others in the use of firearms. Judging
by his filmography, Common seems to like to flex his creative muscles by
playing characters who are the polar opposite of his rap image. This is
different from most rapper-turned-actors, who usually take the safe route by
choosing roles which fall in line with whatever image theyve already
established within Hip-Hop.
Look for Wanted in theaters everywhere on June 27.
Wanted movie trailer
It just wouldnt feel like Summer
movie season without an Independence Day weekend offering from the last real
movie star alive, Will Smith. Hancock looks to continue
that tradition while simultaneously cashing in on the superhero craze.
Hancock is not merely a cash-in, though, as it offers a comedic
twist on the genre. Will Smith plays John Hancock, a drunken vagrant who just
happens to possess powers. However, his feats of superhuman ability have not
exactly endeared him to the public. His alcoholism causes him to have a certain
disregard for public safety and property.
Jason Bateman plays a publicist who attempts to help Hancock clean
up his act and become a true hero.
Hancock repays him by carrying on a love affair with his wife played by Charlize Theron.
The concept sounds promising,
and the trailers so far have been entertaining, though I have heard rumblings
that test screenings havent been going so well. The latest trailer made an
uneasy transition from comedy to serious drama, leaving one a little uncertain
about what to expect from the film. This might be indicative of the problems
that test audiences are having with it. The fact that it had to be trimmed
twice to avoid an R-rating suggests that it may not be as family-friendly as
the marketing wants us to believe.
Regardless of quality, I expect Hancock to do relatively well at the box
office once it opens on July 2. Will Smith is a pretty sure bet as far
blockbusters go as he is probably the most likable and charismatic actor
Hancock movie trailer
The Dark Knight
One of the most anticipated
films of the Summer, I fear this one will be a bittersweet affair as we gear up
for the July 18 release date. On the one
hand, I expect this to be the movie that we have all been waiting for –
the one that will make all aspects of Batman
No easy feat, considering that
no film in the series as of yet has been able to achieve that level of
universal acceptance from batfans, not even
Batman Begins. Each one has its champions and its detractors, which is probably
fitting, seeing as how Batman comics
have offered many different versions and interpretations of the character over
the years. Im really hoping that The Dark Knight breaks this trend by
giving us the ultimate Batman film.
On the other hand one cannot
ignore the melancholy vibes hanging over the proceedings, as the sting and
shock of Heath Ledgers death is
still with us. I fear that if his turn as comics greatest villain is as great
as expected (and by all accounts it will be), it will make the film that much
harder to enjoy on the level intended.
Perhaps it would help to see the
film as a monument to an enormous talent – one of the finest actors of our
generation, giving us the definitive interpretation of The Joker (all due
respect to Jack Nicholson)
Christian Bale stars as Batman, and Morgan Freeman reprises his role as Lucius Fox from Batman Begins. There will
also be an appearance by Debo himself, Tiny Lister.
The Dark Knight movie trailer
Just for good measure, here is the trailer for The Incredible Hulk. As AllHipHop.com confirmed last month, Robert Downey Jr. will make a cameo as Tony Stark in the movie!