Every year it seems to start a little sooner…the launch of the summer blockbuster movie season. Tradition used to have it that the major films companies delayed their releases until after Memorial Day and the schools have closed for summer vacation in order to maximize audience availability. That was then. Audiences have definitely changed, and so has the theatre going experience. Now with record setting year behind them, the miracle moguls are kicking off the Summer of 2010 beginning in April to fit in all the product that’s ahead for your viewing delight.
With magical swords and fire breathing demons the enchanting world of Greek mythology leaps from the screen in dazzling 3D as Clash Of The Titans primes the summer money pump and hits the megaplex on April 2. Hades and Zeus are pitted in a fearsome battle for humanity. Perseus, the son of Zeus and Danae who was raised as a human, volunteers to lead a dangerous mission to defeat Hades before he can seize power from Zeus and unleash hell on earth. This remake of the Ray Harryhausen 1981 special effects B film promises to be a lot more Avatar as Sam Worthington leads daring band of warriors and sets off on a perilous journey battling unholy demons and fearsome beasts.
Also coming in April will be the newest in the Disney Nature series, Oceans. Meet the creatures of the sea: those that are known and the many that still have to be discovered. It is a venture into the fullness of the sea to show how it teems with life, and into the deepest ocean beds to meet living fossils that belong to world prehistory. Follow the whiplash turns of a shark, the speedy swimming of a swordfish and the gliding manta ray and explore the dens of giant cod, spiny monkfish, orange roughy and the giant squid in their natural habitats. If you’ve ever wondered what’s just offshore of Florida’s sandy beaches, you’ll be in for a treat…or maybe even a scare. And speaking scary creatures…Freddie Kruger, old razor hands, returns in A Nightmare on Elm Street for a revisit to the dreamscape of slice and dice. As long as they stay awake a group of terrified teens are safe from being impaled, sliced, chased, and ripped bloody out of their sneakers.
May seems to be “man” month with MacGruber, Robin Hood and heralds the return of Iron Man and Shrek. Robert Downey Jr. returns as Tony Stark in Iron Man 2, the metal flying super hero along with Pepper Potts (Gwyneth Paltrow), and James “Rhodey” Rhodes (Don Cheadle) at his side must confront powerful enemies while keeping the secrets of the super techno suit. Since 1922 when Douglas Fairbanks first brought to the screen the story of the always daring outlaw of Sherwood Forest who robs from the rich and gives to the poor, Robin Hood has delighted audiences for years and this go-around promises a grand spectacle starring Russell Crowe. Will Forte’s big screen launch of his SNL character MacGruber hopes to fare better than SNL’s Cone Heads release a few years back but this premise seems even more contrived. Shrek Forever After finds our loveable green hero with the blues in 3D and embarking on an It’s A Wonderful Life type mind trip about what the legendary land of Far, Far Away would be without his awesome roar. One break in the testosterone heavy May schedule is Memorial Day weekend when the highly anticipated renewal of the latest adventures of the wacky girls of Manhattan as Sex & The City 2 slips into theatres. They say you’ll get “Carried” away with the fun, friendship and fashion. Guys, skip this one and take in a Sun’s baseball game.
That set of #12 size paws come bounding in when Marmaduke, the Great Dane of comic book fame, makes the cinema his oversized dog house to start the month of June. Jackie Chan is doing the “wax on/wax off” mentor duties in the remake of The Karate Kid and the lovable characters from Andy’s bedroom chest are back in Toy Story 3, and this time in 3D. Andy’s off to college while Woody, Buzz and crew worry about their future and try to welcome Barbie and Ken to the toy box clan. Adam Sandler, Kevin James, Chris Rock, Rob Schneider, and David Spade team up for a 4th of July blowout at the lake house retreat of their youth in Grown Ups.
Cameron Diaz and Tom Cruise hook up for a blind date that turns into a round the world escapade in the action adventure, Knight and Day and then the summer’s top teen anticipated cinematic return of Edward, Jacob and Bella in the third installment of The Twilight Saga: Eclipse.
The blistering heat of July will make the cool dark movie theatre a favorite escape for M. Night Shyamalan’s The Last Airbender. Based on the hugely successful Nickelodeon animated TV series, this is the opening chapter in Aang’s struggle to survive. He is lone Avatar with the power to manipulate all four elements of Air, Water, Earth and Fire with the daunting task of restoring balance to a war-torn world. More eye-popping effects are promised for Robert Rodriquez’s Predators when Adrien Brody ripples as Royce, a mercenary who reluctantly leads a group of elite warriors who come to realize they’ve been brought together on an alien planet… as prey who are now being systemically hunted and eliminated by a new breed of alien Predators. There’s a different breed of little critter hostiles, living just beneath your backyard in Despicable Me. Unbeknownst to the neighbors, hidden beneath this home is a vast secret hideout. Surrounded by a small army of minions, Gru (voiced by Steve Carell), is planning the biggest heist in the history of the world. He is going to steal the moon. Meanwhile, in another auditorium, a trapped Leonardo DiCaprio finds himself in a mind cage with no doors in Inception. From Batman director Christopher Nolan this one promises to be a genuine nail-biter. Now, for a real change of pace, do you remember Fantasia’s Mickey Mouse with the waltzing mops and bouncing water pales? Disney Films has revived The Scorcer’s Apprentice with a 21st Century spin. Balthazar Blake (Nicolas Cage) is a master sorcerer in modern-day Manhattan trying to defend the city from his arch-nemesis, Maxim Horvath (Alfred Molina). Balthazar can’t do it alone, so he recruits Dave Stutler (Jay Baruchel), a seemingly average guy who demonstrates hidden potential, as his reluctant protégé. The sorcerer gives his unwilling accomplice a crash course in the art and science of magic, and together, these unlikely partners work to stop the forces of darkness. Also in July, Steve Carell and Paul Rudd star in Dinner For Schmucks a comedy about the most pathetic guy ever to be invited to another man’s weekly dinner party. Romana & Beezus brings Beverly Cleary’s beloved childhood characters to life. Ramona and Beezus Quimby live on Klickitat Street. The stories of her adventures begin when Beezus, who is just turning ten, finds four-year-old Ramona an exasperating little sister! In Salt Angelina Jolie is accused by a defector of being a Russian sleeper spy. Salt goes on the run to clear her name and ultimately prove she is a patriot. Liev Schreiber stars as Winter, Salt’s boss and friend on the Russian desk at the CIA, and Chiwetel Ejiofor plays Peabody, a CIA counter-intelligence officer. What no Pepper? Thank you!
The sweltering days of August herald the wind down for the traditional summer movie season, and with many school’s early start schedules, the leftover offerings this month deserve a fast rack to the video store – they’re lame. Let’s see, the first to stumble through the August boxoffice will be The Other Guys with the totally mismatched cast of Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg as an awkward pair of NYC detectives who idolize mentors Samuel L. Jackson and Dwaye “The Rock” Johnson. And if that doesn’t get you in the stampede line to the exit, Step 3 in 3D will spin right in your face in the third installment of this no-plot street dance spectacle. Julia Roberts is losing grip, divorces her husband and takes off a world traveling adventure in Eat, Pray, Love. Has the Pretty Woman gone cougar? Oh yea, a sure Razzie nom will be Sly Stallone off on another bullet riddled mercenary mission in The Expendables. And one guy who needs some heavy protection is Bow Wow in Lottery Ticket when he discovers a $360 million winning lottery ticket he’s got to protect over a long holiday weekend. Some last of the summer hurrah duds include Jennifer Anniston and Jason Bates in the sperm swap comedy The Switch, Paul Walker leads a gang of mastermind criminals on their final caper but detective Matt Dillon has a plan-spoiler in Takers and to top off the summer of 2010…ready to get nibbled? Piranha 3D is the flip side of sushi .