I haven’t done this in a while, so I figure out it’s a good time to start again. But instead of doing it in three-month chunks, which can be very daunting because there are so many movies to talk about, I’ll do it monthly so it’ll be more manageable. Besides, release dates change all the time, especially for smaller movies, so doing it monthly will make it more accurate.
Movies I will definitely watch in cinemas:
Spider-Man: Homecoming (Jul 6)
I’m a Marvel fan, so of course I’m going to watch this; even though Spider-Man is now a little young for my tastes, and in its third incarnation, which makes his story a little tired. (How many times must we hear a variation of “With great power comes great responsibility?”) But this third incarnation is made by Marvel Studios, though Sony Pictures still owns the rights. Marvel, under Kevin Feige’s leadership, a bona fide fan of the comics, actually loves their property and isn’t only looking to cash in on it, so that should make it better. Critics love it too, which helps.
Dunkirk (Jul 20)
If this war movie about 400,000 soldiers stuck on a beach waiting for rescue while besieged by enemies was made by anyone else besides Christopher Nolan, I don’t think I would want to watch it. It’s not my genre of choice. I’m watching this because of my faith in him to tell a story with beautiful visuals that I will ultimately enjoy, whether I have any interest in the topic or not. I wasn’t fond of Interstellar, but it was beautiful at parts and had some amazing scenes (the docking sequence comes to mind immediately). Maybe it’s just me being very forgiving because he gave us Inception and The Dark Knight, two of my favourite films of all time, but I disliked it much less than I would have if anyone else had tried to feed me mumbo jumbo about solving gravity to save the earth and love transcending time. Heck, before he made The Dark Knight, I didn’t know a superhero movie could be thoughtful but action-packed, serious yet enjoyable. I hope he justifies my faith in him with Dunkirk.
Movies that look interesting, but whether I watch them or not is up to anyone’s guess:
Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets (Jul 20)
I’ve caught an early preview of the film, but if I hadn’t, I would have been ambivalent about watching it. To be honest, I went in not being a fan of either of the leads (Dane DeHaan and Cara Delevingne), or the alien fantasy aspect of it, but Valerian surprised me. It looks like the kind of sci-fi movie that cinephiles and fanboys will go gaga over and turn into a cult classic, like Luc Besson’s own The Fifth Element did — and early reactions from reviewers who have seen it are proving my sentiments true. I’ll review it properly closer to date, but if you really love movies, you should watch it.
Baby Driver (Jul 20)
I am fine with most of the cast of the film, but I wouldn’t go watch it for them. And I especially have a negative impression of Ansel Elgort because I can’t take him seriously as a leading man. Nor am I a huge music lover, and music plays such an important role in this movie. But it has such great reviews! I’m torn.
The Big Sick (Jul 27)
This looks cute and funny, and is based on the true story of actor and writer Kumail Nanjiani’s courtship with his wife. Also very well-reviewed. But it also doesn’t look like a movie that I absolutely have to watch in cinemas, instead of at home, especially when I don’t feel like watching it now. Maybe in future.
Atomic Blonde (Jul 27)
I adore Charlize Theron, and I want to see her in more ass-kicking roles, which this movie gives her. It is also directed by David Leitch, one of the directors of John Wick, which I loved, so I know the action scenes will be great, since both directors were former stunt coordinators who know how to shoot action scenes coherently. (He had to turn down co-directing John Wick: Chapter 2 so he could focus on doing this film properly.)
But I dislike how the film’s palette is so grey and gloomy and washed out. Also, while I can watch hyper-violent movies, they’re not my favourite type of movie to watch. I’m 90 percent sure I won’t be watching this in cinemas.
Movies I will skip entirely:
War for the Planet of the Apes (Jul 13)
I have zero doubt that this is a great movie. Critics have been loving the entire rebooted Planet of the Apes trilogy, and I will encourage everyone else to see what the fuss is about. In fact, the trailer looks great! But as I said three years ago about Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, I’m not into movies about unnatural forces (in this case, sentient apes) taking over the world and exterminating mankind, even if mankind deserves it, so I’ll give it a miss for now.
(Jul 27) (Sep 7)
Great cast (Nicole Kidman, Kirsten Dunst, Elle Fanning, Colin Farrell), and an award-winning director (Sofia Coppola won Best Director at the Cannes Film Festival this year), but I have zero interest in Southern gothic period thrillers about a group of repressed women revenging themselves on the man in the midst who disrupts their quiet existence, no matter how much he deserves it.
When I wrote this, it was supposed to open on 27 July, but later that week, it was moved to 7 September. See what I mean by release dates change all the time?