May has arrived and though the weather in these parts more resembles winter right now, the weather at the cineplex is full on summer. With the release of Iron Man 3, summer 2013 kicks off in earnest, and won’t let up until August. I’ve been doing the “Summer Seven” for several years now, highlighting in order the seven summer movies I am most anticipating, and this year is easily the most packed I can remember. Usually I have to leave one or two movies I’m excited about off the list, but this year I have an additional runner up seven that just didn’t quite make the cut. World War Z, Great Gatsby, Fast and Furious 6, Much Ado About Nothing, The Lone Ranger, Despicable Me 2, and Elysium all have me excited and yet not a one of them could crack the “Summer Seven” this year. That might mean this could be one of the greatest summers for movies of all time, or it might just mean I’m getting a little too excited for movies that will eventually let me down. Either way, here are the seven movies that did make the list, in order, culminate with my most anticipated movie of Summer 2013.
Remember, it’s not necessarily that I think these will be the best seven movies of the summer, but they are the seven I’m most looking forward to seeing.
7. The Wolverine – Hugh Jackman as Wolverine is the through line of the X-Men film universe and even though the movies have been hit or miss, and his X-Men Origins movie was largely on the miss side, I’m excited to see what tricks they might have up their sleeves. In my opinion, the X-Men franchise could be the greatest film franchise of all time if they play their cards right, so it will be very interesting to see what kind of hand we are being dealt with this one.
6. After Earth – Eventually M. Night Shymalan has to remember he can make great movies right? Truth be told, it’s the subject matter (post apocalyptic earth) and Mr. Will Smith that have me most geeked to see what this is about. But if M. Night finds his touch again I will be so thrilled I might just forgive him for “The Last Airbender”. Wait, just remembering that trauma again, never mind, no forgiveness available. Let’s just start with atoning for “The Happening” and go from there.
5. Monsters U – I just find it harder to get excited about Pixar sequels (or prequels) than their originals. Still a Pixar movie is a Pixar movie and Monsters U does look like an interesting setting in which to revisit Mike and Sulley. The most interesting hurdle to jump for the team though may be how to replace what was essentially the heart and soul of the original, Boo. If Monsters U somehow manages to succeed without her I’ll once again tip my cap to the greatest story tellers and filmakers working today.
4. Pacific Rim – Of the seven, this is the one I know the least about. I know there will be mechs and monsters and that they will be delivered by a director who is adept at stunning visuals. In the end, I guess that must be enough cause I cannot wait to see what is going on with this one.
3. Man of Steel – Speaking of visual directors, I’m pumped to see what Zach Snyder does with such time honored material especially under the tutelage of Chris “brain bender” Nolan. The problem is I’m not sure if “Dark Knighting” the son of Krypton will actually be a good thing. I miss the days when we focused on the superhero part of superheros more than the alter ego part. If they focus more on Clark Kent than Superman, not only will I end up craving more super powers, I will probably have to make some sort of, “They should have called it, Man with Glasses” joke. Even so, I can’t wait.
2. Iron Man 3 – Marvel owns summer these days, and the big guy in the can comes out to play solo for the third time. Let’s face it, all they have to do is have a halfway decent story, some cool visual effects, and a partially menacing villian and Robert Downey Jr. will do the rest.
1. Star Trek: Into Darkness – So much to be excited about; JJ Abrams, an incredible cast, Benedict Cumberbatch, and the wonderful characters of the Star Trek universe. Though I know many eyes will be on this to continue to evaluate how JJ will do taking over the Star Wars universe. I’m content to just get another great Star Trek movie, and I’m pretty confident that’s exactly what we are getting.