Ten MORE Reasons to Go to the Movies This Summer

Published on June 21st, 2013

Greetings, you magnificent Nation of Pop.

Last time around, I gave you ten movies I thought might be a good time this summer. I appreciated the feedback, and this week, as I give you ten more picks to fill out your summer viewing schedule, I would like to remind you that taste is a personal thing, that my choices will obviously be geared by my taste, and that I will try, but may not succeed, in choosing movies that don’t “suck ass”.

Red 2 (Friday, July 19) – Sequel time to the highly under-rated adaptation (and by adaptation, I mean REALLY loose adaptation) of Warren Ellis and Cully Hamner’s Wildstorm mini-series. Pretty much the entire cast is back, and my feeling was that the cast was 99% of what made the first movie fun.  Bruce Willis, Morgan Freeman, and John Malkovich can crank out this sort of action-comedy in their sleep. And honestly, I don’t know who I have more of a crush on, Helen Mirren or Mary-Louise Parker. Should be a good time.


The Conjuring (Friday, July 19) – The first trailer for this movie was so bad that several people argued it should be renamed “The Clap”. But when I learned what the movie was about, I got VERY excited. The Conjuring is based on a true story, one of the real-life cases conducted by world renowned paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren. I had the pleasure of seeing the Warrens lecture on three separate occasions, and each time, the stories they told were absolutely terrifying. If this movie can create the same sense of dread, it may be able to elevate this one above standard haunted-house flicks.


Only God Forgives (Friday, July 19) – Ryan Gosling, who has proven he is more than a pretty face, but a serious actor with some serious skills. The director of “Bronson” and “Drive”. A revenge-movie plot about a man tasked by his crime lord mother with murdering the men responsible for his brother’s death. Do the math. This movie is going to be bloody, violent, and really, REALLY good.

The To-Do List (Friday, July 26) – Aubrey Plaza plays an uptight, straight-A, Type-A, overachiever who creates a “to-do list” of all the “activities” she missed out on in high school, and needs to cram in (pun probably intended) before she goes off to college. The cast is comedy gold (Alia Shawkat, Donald Glover, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Bill Hader), and the world is probably ready for a smart, female-centric “Porky’s”.


The Wolverine (Friday, July 26) – Okay, let’s just say it. “X-Men Origins: Wolverine” was godawful.  Just… just a horrible trainwreck of a movie. I’m counting on this one to be better. Hugh Jackman is back as Wolverine, gone to seed since the events of “X3” (another abdominal piece of shit movie), and summoned to Japan to honor the dying request of an old friend. Remember back in the day when everyone freaked out because Jackman was going to play Wolverine? At this point, nobody else could do the role. Whatever you think about the previous films in the X-franchise, Jackman’s acting has NEVER been the problem. He IS Wolverine, and if this script, heavily influenced by the classic Claremont/Miller mini-series, is even remotely good, Jackman is going to revive this character and this franchise in a big way. I hope he can do it. (I also hope, bolstered by the success of “Les Miserables”, there’s at least one scene where Wolvie bursts into song.)

Frankenstein’s Army  (Friday, July 26) – Russian soldiers pushing into eastern Germany at the tail end of World War II discover a secret Nazi lab, where scientists have used the legendary Frankenstein’s notes to assemble an army stitched together from the body parts of their dead comrades. I have no expectations that this movie is going to be even remotely “good” in the traditional sense. But every summer needs one insanely fucked-up grindhouse flick, and this definitely looks like it will fill the bill. File this under “Movies my wife will not be going to see with me”.


Europa Report  (Friday, August 2) – So as I understand it this movie is a crazy-quilt of documentary, alternative history and sci-fi thriller. It follows a crew of international astronauts on a mission to Jupiter’s moon Europa, to investigate the possible existence of alien life within our solar system. The movie was developed in close collaboration with NASA and JPL, so if you like a little more “science” than “fiction” in your science fiction, I don’t think this is going to disappoint. Call it “Prometheus” for people without Attention Deficit Disorder. (Cue the onslaught of angry messages telling me that “Prometheus” was awesome. “Prometheus” was NOT awesome. I can prove it scientifically on a chalkboard.)

We’re the Millers (Friday, August 9) – What do you get when you cross “National Lampoon’s Vacation” with “Cheech and Chong Up In Smoke”? Probably something that looks like this. Jason Sudeikis plays a small-time pot dealer who gets stuck bringing his boss’ latest shipment in from Mexico. To get past border security, he recruits a stripper (Jennifer Aniston) his goofy neighbor kid, and a gutterpunk goth girl to pose as his family. The trailer really entertained me, especially Ed Helms as the drug kingpin with the ridiculously large aquarium. I’d be willing to give this a shot.


Grandmasters (Friday, August 23) – Spare me your whining about subtitles. This movie is inspired by the life of Ip Man, the martial-arts master who trained Bruce Lee. The fight choreography looks REALLY good. I’m totally down.

The World’s End (Friday, August 23) – Five childhood friends reunite and return to their hometown in an attempt to recreate an epic pub crawl they experienced 20 years prior. But their hometown has changed, and not for the better. HELL YEAH! The team that gave us Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz bringing us what looks like “The Hangover” meets “Invasion of the Body Snatchers”? Count me in.

One Direction: This is Us (Friday, August 30) – Just kidding. (Unless you’re into that sort of thing. We don’t judge here at POP Nation.)

Follow me on twitter @travisholyfield for more movie picks, comic book recommendations, and reactions to the strange goings on of our pop culture.

Now, let’s all head to the lobby, and grab ourselves a snack.

Travis M. Holyfield