Coming Soon: Summer Movies You Don’t Want to Miss, Part 1

By Editor May 16, 2016 12:00

By Anthony Hernandez

With temperatures already topping out well into the hundreds, it’s safe to say that summer has officially arrived in the Valley of the Sun. What better way to beat the heat than kicking back in a nice, cool movie theater and catching the next big (or small) summer movie?

The big screen has already seen its fair share of blockbusters this year – the mediocre Batman v. Superman landed in theaters with ho-hum reviews in March, Disney’s magical Jungle Book wowed audiences young and old in the middle of April, while the really good (could’ve been great) Captain America: Civil War had the fifth-largest opening ever two Friday’s ago.

But the summer isn’t just about the blockbusters. There’s a wealth of smaller movies, including some really wacky independent films, on their way to a theater near you. That being said, we’ve compiled a list of films we’re anticipating the most this summer movie season. Here’s part one of our summer movie lineup:


May 20 – The Angry Birds Movie

Based on the best selling app game (what won’t they make into movies these days?), the Angry Birds Movie hopes to ride the wave of the game’s popularity (coupled with 3D premium pricing) toward a huge cash grab. When an island populated by happy, flightless birds is visited by some shifty green pigs, it’s up to three outcasts with some “anger management issues” – Red, Chuck and Bomb – to find out what the pigs are really up to. Discover why these birds are so angry, this Friday.

Rated PG for rude humor and action.

Starring: Peter Dinklage, Jason Sudeikis, Kate McKinnon, Danny McBride, Bill Hader, Sean Penn





May 22 (limited) – When Marnie Was There

Opening last year in Japan, When Marnie Was There marks the last film to come out of the famous Studio Ghibli. US audiences will finally get to see the film in limited release starting May 22. The story follows a young girl who is sent to the country for health reasons, where she meets an unlikely friend in the form of Marnie, As the friendship deepens, it’s possible that there is more to Marnie than we might expect.

Rated PG for thematic elements and smoking

Starring: Sara Takatsuki, Kasumi Arimura, Nanako Matsushima






May 27 – X-Men: Apocalypse

Bryan Singer returns to direct a star-studded cast in this sequel to the newest vein of X-Men films. Worshiped as a god, Apocalypse – the first and most powerful mutant from Marvel’s X-Men universe – amassed the powers of countless other mutants, becoming immortal and practically invincible. But upon awakening, he is disillusioned by the world as it has become, and the X-Men must unite to stop his extinction level plans.

Rated PG-13 for sequences of violence, action and destruction, brief strong language and some suggestive images.

Starring: James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence, Nicholas Hoult, Oscar Isaac, Rose Byrne, Evan Peters, Sophie Turner





May 27 – Alice Through the Looking Glass

In this sequel (without Tim Burton) to the 2010 smash hit, Alice wakes up in Wonderland and must travel through a mysterious new world to retrieve a magical scepter that can stop the evil Lord of Time before he turns forward the clock, rendering Wonderland into a barren, lifeless old world. With the help of some friends old and new, Alice must also uncover an evil plot to put the Queen of Hearts back on the Wonderland throne. The late Alan Rickman (in his final role) plays the voice of the Blue Caterpillar. 

Rated PG for fantasy action/peril and some language.

Starring: Mia Wasikowska, Johnny Depp, Anne Hathaway, Helena Bonham Carter, Alan Rickman, Sacha Baron Cohen, Michael Sheen, Stephen Fry





June 3 – Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows

The Turtles come into conflict with mad scientist Dr. Baxter Stockman and the return of Shredder in this sequel to the 2014 hit. Shredder hires Stockman to create mutants of his own in the form of Bebop and Rocksteady to even the score against the Turtle brothers. Following an extraterrestrial invasion above New York City led by the Dimension X inhabitant known as Krang, the Turtles not only find an anti-mutagen that could possibly turn them human – but they must unite with their human friends to stop the threats on all sides.

Rated PG-13 for sci-fi action violence.

Starring: Megan Fox, Stephen Amell, Will Arnett, Laura Linney, Tyler Perry, Tony Shalhoub, Fred Armisen





June 10 – The Conjuring 2

Also known as The Conjuring 2: The Enfield Poltergeist, James Wan returns to direct this sequel to his 2013 critical and box office hit. The Warrens travel to north London to help a single mother raising four children alone in a house afflicted with malicious spirits. But the paranormal investigators may have come up against something more than they bargained for when Lorraine has a vision of Ed’s imminent death. The first film was an incredibly solid, well made horror film – so hopes are high for this sequel.

Rated R for terror and horror violence

Starring: Vera Farmiga, Patrick Wilson, David Thewlis, Frances O’Connor





June 10 – Warcraft

Based on the insanely popular video role-playing game, Warcraft follows the story of two heroes from opposing sides who must decide the fate of their family, their people, and their home. The peaceful realm of Azeroth stands on the brink of war as its civilization faces orc warrior invaders, who are fleeing their dying home to colonize another. When a portal opens to connect the two worlds, armies from both sides must come face-to-face in a battle against extinction.

Rated PG – 13 for extended sequences of intense fantasy violence

Starring: Travis Fimmel, Toby Kebbell, Ben Foster, Paula Patton, Dominic Cooper





June 17 – Finding Dory

Pixar returns to the big screen with the much-anticipated sequel to one of their greatest films. Taking place just six-months after the events of Finding Nemo, the friendly-but-forgetful Dory (with the help of her clownfish friends Marlin and Nemo) embarks on a quest to find her long-lost mother and father. Along the way, some new friends are made, and everyone learns a few things about what it really means to be a family.

Rated PG for mild thematic elements

Starring: Ellen DeGeneres, Albert Brooks, Idris Elba, Kate McKinnon, Bill Hader, Diane Keaton, Ed O’Neill, Ty Burrell, Eugene Levy





June 24 (limited) – Swiss Army Man

Remember those whacky independent films we mentioned? Well, here’s one that more than fits that description – but looks so off-beat and entertaining we couldn’t leave it off our list. When a hopeless man intent on dying finds himself stranded on a deserted island, he discovers (and befriends) a dead body with a bunch of extraordinarily helpful supernatural abilities (played by Daniel Radcliffe) – and together, they go on a surreal journey to find their way back home. This film opens in limited release on June 24, and wide on July 1.

Rated R for language and sexual material

Starring: Paul Dano, Daniel Radcliffe, Mary Elizabeth Winstead





June 24 – Independence Day: Resurgence

The original Independence Day exploded onto the big screen way back in 1996 and redefined the summer blockbuster. Now, twenty years later, the alien invaders are returning to earth to exact their revenge on the puny humans who defeated them. Using recovered alien technology from the first invasion, the nations of Earth collaborated on an immense defense program to protect the planet – but nothing could prepare us for this new threat of total human annihilation.

Not yet rated by the MPAA (though most likely, PG-13).

Starring: Liam Hemsworth, Jeff Goldblum, Bill Pulman, Vivica A. Fox, Joey King, Judd Hirsch, Brent Spiner, William Fichtner, Maika Monroe





See you at your local movie theater for these, and other upcoming, hotly-anticipated films. And don’t miss the second part of our “Coming Soon” summer series in late June.

By Editor May 16, 2016 12:00

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