Summer offers the perfect time to relax, try yoga for the 14th time and panic because you still need to catch up on all the latest movies. Don’t fall behind this season and make sure to go to the theater and see these gems. (Spoiler: If you haven’t seen Booksmart yet, what are you even doing with your life?)
A lot of movies come out in the Summertime. You can’t miss these picks.
1. Booksmart (May 24)
I got to see Booksmart twice before its official release and I’m thrilled to announce that it deserves recognition as a nearly perfect high school comedy. Beanie Feinstein (Lady Bird) and Kaitlyn Dever give magnetic performances with so much charm and energy. They play two best friends about to graduate high school and feel immense pride in their dedication to academia and extremely bright futures. When they find out that the kids who partied also got into Ivy League schools, they decide they need a night of partying to have the full high school experience. Booksmart offers a delightful coming-of-age story capturing the beauty of female friendship, carried with a gracious amount of humor and honesty. Not to mention Olivia Wilde’s stunning directorial debut.
2. Rocketman (May 31)
Rocketman follows the life of the iconic and electrifying Elton John. Described as an “epic musical fantasy,” the film aims to capture the good, and the bad of the musical legend—delving into his issues with addiction and rehab, his other-worldly persona and the best part: his unabashed queerness. The film dramatizes each of his featured songs to elevate the fascinating spectacle of his life. Based on the trailer and early reviews, Rocketman tells an imaginative, explosive, weird, fun and universally relatable tale.
3. Dark Phoenix (June 7)
Whether you have seen the X-men movies or not, Dark Phoenix seems incredibly intriguing. The cast immediately draws you in — Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence, James McAvoy, Jessica Chastain, along with many others. However, Game of Thrones star Sophie Turner might demands the most attention of them all. Her character, Jean Grey, struggles to fight against the dark cosmic force that consumes her as she evolves into the Dark Phoenix. Watch this movie as an avid X-men fan or as someone new to the franchise. Either way, you will deeply feel the intense and emotional ride as bands of mutants must fight one of their own.
4. Late Night (June 7)
Mind Kaling, a gift to the comedic world, created a promising comedy about being a female late-night-talk-show host. Although women have continued to make strides in professional comedy, late-night still consists of mostly men. So Emma Thompson stepping into that role has a lot of allure. Kaling gets hired as her new and only woman writer, as it’s clear that Kaling acts as a generational voice of change. As Thompson risks cancellation, Kaling helps her change her show to catch up with the changing times. It seems like a film with a lot of heart and a great exploration of two women who find common ground despite being divided by stark generational differences.
5. The Farewell (June 12)
This true story fascinatingly started as an episode on This American Life. Lulu Wang lived, wrote and directed the film about a Chinese-American woman named Billi. She returns to China when she finds out her grandmother has a short amount of time left to live. Her family decides not to tell her and let her live out the rest of her life in ignorant bliss. Billi struggles with this decision and grapples with being caught between two clashing cultures. Reviews already raved about this bittersweet comedy, saying it stunningly portrays the lengths of love and family and touches your heart.
6. Spiderman: Far From Home (July 2)
Although Avengers: Endgame has left us in complete emotional turmoil, the Marvel adventures are not nearly over. Tom Holland returns as Peter Parker in a film that will surely please fans of the beloved superhero. This time Parker ventures to Europe on a school trip. The new Spider-man films grabbed our interest for their high school charm and relatability, largely due to Holland himself. Surely this film won’t differ as he ventures abroad into new dangers, new challenges and new villains like Mysterio, played by Jake Gyllenhaal.
7. Midsommar (July 3)
After the success of Hereditary, movie fans have been waiting to see what director Ari Aster can do next. It doesn’t seem like he can disappoint with Midsommar, a horror film that stands out for its bright and vibrant colors. It follows a woman and her boyfriend as they take a trip to a Swedish festival. There, they discover that the residents practice odd rituals and weird, unsettling events start occurring. More than anything on this list, definitely watch the trailer and see if it piques your interest. It looks unlike anything you have ever seen in the best way possible.
8. Toy Story 4 (June 21)
I may have seen the Toy Story 4 trailer more times than I can count on my fingers, mostly because it captures the adventure and spirit of friendship that the other movies deliver so well. This time, the gang, especially Woody, question their roles as toys and what they really want for themselves. It also includes an oddly relatable character named Forky. Bonnie (the new owner of the toys) created Forky from a spork and some basic craft items. When he comes to life and Woody informs him of his new purpose as a toy he fills with existential dread and insists on belonging in the trash. I would say his experience deeply resonates with our generation. So if anything, go for the cool adventures with Forky.
9. Men In Black: International (June 14)
This movie promises thoroughly entertaining action. Starring the always fantastic Chris Hemsworth and Tessa Thompson, the iconic movie franchise returns. Seeing Hemsworth and Thompson face extraterrestrial threats surely excites audiences as the two have already proved chemistry from Thor: Rognarok. It features the signature style of aliens from the old films with some new characters and new threats. Hopefully it has an original take on the old beloved films, while giving us a reminiscent feel and reminding us why we loved the original trilogy so much. Say it with me: “The men and women in black.”
10. The Lion King (July 19)
If you haven’t heard of the most talked about remake in years, you might live under a rock. This film features the voice acting of Donald Glover, Beyoncé, Seth Rogen and many other big names. Of course, the excitement around the film surrounds the important role it plays in so many of our childhoods. Despite the big star names, the film consists of entirely digital recreation despite the fact that it looks just like the stunning sights of Africa. With so much earned adoration of the original, you can’t avoid being excited to see what Disney does to make this classic story come alive. This film’s cultural significance in terms of new technology, nostalgic remakes and of course, Beyoncé, makes this one a must-see.