‘O! how shall summer’s honey breath hold out, against the wrackful siege of battering days?” wrote William Shakespeare, which really says it all when it comes to summer movies.
Starting with this weekend’s $200-million, three-villain The Amazing Spider-Man 2, the battering season is on, baby. Coming soon are Godzilla, X-Men: Days of Future Past and Transformers: Age of Extinction. There are sequels such as Dawn of the Planet of the Apes and The Expendables 3, along with Edge of Tomorrow, with Tom Cruise fighting aliens, and Hercules, with Dwayne Johnson throwing down as a Greek demi-god.
Though the “summer is dumber” rule is partly true, it’s only a subplot in the larger story. The next four months will also offer lots of family and teen films, original comedies, extravagant fantasies and – good God almighty! – a biography of soul sensation James Brown to maintain the heat until September. What follows is a sampler of some of the most promising, and unavoidable, late-spring and summer offerings.
Million Dollar Arm
X-Men: Days of Future Past
A Million Ways to Die in the West
Edge of Tomorrow
22 Jump Street
Transformers: Age of Extinction
Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
Guardians of the Galaxy
An X-Men-sized cast is featured in Marvel’s first incarnation of its self-satirizing Guardians series, with Bradley Cooper voicing a genetically modified raccoon and Vin Diesel as a humanoid plant. Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Djimon Hounson, John C. Reilly, Benicio Del Toro and Glenn Close also appear. Aug. 1