HOLLYWOOD—With the release of “Avengers: End Game” this past week, it’s safe to say the summer 2019 box-office is in full-force. I mean summer technically doesn’t start until June, but in Hollywood it has moved up earlier each year. There are plenty, and I mean plenty of familiar favorites, sequels and new content hitting the multiplex between May and August to satisfy the movie craving for all interested parties. There is no time like the present so let’s kick-off our conversation addressing some of the big flicks arriving for the month of May.
There really is ONLY one big flick hitting this month that is on everyone’s radar and that is the live-action version of the Disney classic “Aladdin.” Will Smith has assumed the iconic role of Genie, whose voice in the past was portrayed by the great Robin Williams. The trailer looks interesting, but as I’ve argued before animation and live-action adaptions are two different cups of tea, so we’ll see on May 24 if all the right notes struck a chord with audiences.
A sequel that I believe was not warranted is “Godzilla: King of Monsters” arriving just in time for Memorial Day. I thought its predecessor was one of the worst movies I saw in 2016. I was bored out of my mind watching this movie literally drag for almost an hour before anything happened and I feel to sleep in the theater at least two times before the film caught my attention. Perhaps the addition of “Stranger Things” star Millie Bobby Brown, Vera Farmiga and Sally Hawkins can rebirth this iconic creature who hits theaters on May 31.
If you’re looking for comedy, Seth Rogen and Charlize Theron team up for the political flick “Long Shot” on May 3. That same weekend, the thriller “The Intruder” starring Michael Ealy, Meagan Good and Dennis Quaid hits theaters. Other notable flicks for the month of May included the animated movie “Ugly Dolls,” Keanu Reeves returns for the third chapter in the “John Wick” franchise, “John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum alongside Halle Berry and Anne Hathaway and Rebel Wilson team up for the comedy “The Hustle.”
June 2019 is the month of sequels people. At long last we’re getting what I call another chapter in the “X-Men” universe with “Dark Phoenix” that looks to be plenty of fun on June 7. That same day, the animated sequel “The Secret Life of Pets 2” arrives in theaters. A week later Chris Hemsworth and Tessa Thompson team up for the “Men in Black” spinoff, “Men in Black: International” hoping to entice audiences. That flick will face stiff competition from another remake of the 1970s classic “Shaft.” This time Jessie Usher takes on the title role, with Richard Roundtree and Samuel L. Jackson appearing in the flick as well.
The biggest flick on my radar this summer is the hotly anticipated remake of the 1988 classic “Child’s Play.” The new version sees Mark Hamill voicing Chucky and Aubrey Plaza and Gabriel Bateman battling the evil doll. The movie arrives on June 21. That same day “Toy Story 4” reunites Woody and Buzz Lightyear. I’d say it right now “Toy Story 4” will win the box-office that weekend hands down. The action thriller “Anna” arrives that same day and echoes that flick “Lucy” that came out a few years back starring Scarlett Johansson.
For audiences looking for a great scare, the chaos of that creepy doll Annabelle returns for “Annabelle Comes Home” starring Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga on June 28. Be warned this is not “The Conjuring 3.” That sequel doesn’t arrive until September 2020. The month of July kicks off in a big way just in time for the Fourth of July with “Spider-Man: Far From Home” seeing our favorite hero at long last battle the villain I’ve been dying to see on the screen: Mysterio, who is portrayed by Jake Gyllenhaal.
Mark your calendars for July 19, because ANOTHER live-action remake of a Disney classic, “The Lion King” arrives in theaters. With talents like Donald Glover, Beyonce Knowles, Seth Rogen and a host of others tackling iconic characters, I don’t know if this flick will be able to live up to the original which is one of the best animated flicks of all time if you ask me.
Quentin Taratino unleashes his ninth film, “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood” starring Brad Pitt, Leonardo DiCaprio and Margot Robbie on July 26. Still have no idea what that movie is about, but it seems to be a satirical look at Hollywood’s Golden Era. That same weekend, the sequel “The Boy 2” starring Katie Holmes arrives in theaters. The month of July closes out with a live-action version of “Dora the Explorer” with “Dora and the Lost City of Gold” hitting multiplexes on July 31 with Isabela Moner tackling the iconic character.
As we know, the month of August is when studios dump those flicks they don’t expect to be major box-office draws, even though in previous years we’ve had plenty of surprises. Academy Award-winner Guillermo del Toro returns to the screen with the horror flick “Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark” on August 9.
The movie looks like it could be a great thrill, but at the same time not so much. That same weekend sees the release of the dramedy “Where’d You Go Bernadette?” starring Kristen Wiig. A sequel to one of the most popular games on a mobile device, “The Angry Birds Movie 2” arrives on August 14, with the comedy “Good Boys” looking to draw audiences in for a laugh on August 16. A week later Gerard Butler returns to save the world yet again in “Angel Has Fallen.” This is the third chapter in the franchise following “Olympus Has Fallen” and “London Has Fallen.”
Just looking at the lineup I’d argue that June looks like the strongest of the months when it comes to the summer box-office. The great thing about summer is that there is something on the table for everyone to enjoy rather its comedy, drama, animated, sci-fi or horror you’ll find something to entertain you.