There are no real blockbusters on deck for the second last week of July, but there are choices for nearly every audience.
Let’s bitch it out…
While the three new releases this week aren’t financial heavy hitters, there is a clear market for each. Whether or not that market comes out, however, is another question. The reviews for two of the three will certainly work in their favour, but in the case of Luc Besson’s pricey sci-fi adaptation, we may witness an epic flame-out.
July 21, 2017
- Cast: Tom Hardy (The Dark Knight Rises), Cillian Murphy (The Dark Knight)
- Official Synopsis: Allied soldiers from Belgium, the British Empire and France are surrounded by the German army and evacuated during a fierce battle in World War II.
- Good for fans of: WWII, Saving Private Ryan, male only films
- Is it worth your time? Absolutely. Christopher Nolan is one of the most pedigreed commercial directors currently working in Hollywood. While his output is consistent, Nolan is still only producing a new film every few years, which inadvertently turns each of his movies into a major event. Dunkirk is no different, particularly with its adult-oriented subject matter (great for cutting through the summer blockbuster malaise) and strong critical reaction. It won’t challenge the $300 million club, but Dunkirk should be a strong performer for the rest of the summer and a major awards contender at the end of the year.
- Gross: $50 million / Final Gross: $175 million
Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets
- Cast: Dane DeHaan (The Amazing Spiderman 2), Cara Delevingne (Suicide Squad)
- Official Synopsis: In the 28th century, Valerian (DeHaan) and Laureline (Delevingne) are a team of special operatives charged with maintaining order throughout the human territories. Under assignment from the Minister of Defense, the two embark on a mission to the astonishing city of Alpha—an ever-expanding metropolis where species from all over the universe have converged over centuries to share knowledge, intelligence and cultures with each other. There is a mystery at the center of Alpha, a dark force which threatens the peaceful existence of the City of a Thousand Planets, and Valerian and Laureline must race to identify the marauding menace and safeguard not just Alpha, but the future of the universe.
- Good for fans of: Space operas, special effects, weak narratives, Jar Jar Binks
- Is it worth your time? Alas it doesn’t sound like it. Reviews run from negative to downright savage, with even the most kind suggesting that watching requires overlooking the absence of a plot and avoiding DeHaan’s miscast charisma-less lead whenever possible. If there’s one reason to make the trip to the multiplex, it is the truly spectacular special effects, though even those may not be enough to sustain a 2+ hour runtime.
- Gross: $15 million / Final Gross: $30 million
- Cast: Regina Hall (Miss Congeniality 2), Queen Latifah (Taxi), Jada Pinkett Smith (Scream 2), Tiffany Haddish (Keanu)
- Official Synopsis: When four lifelong friends travel to New Orleans for the annual Essence Festival, sisterhoods are rekindled, wild sides are rediscovered, and there’s enough dancing, drinking, brawling and romancing to make the Big Easy blush.
- Good for fans of: Raunchy comedy, female friendship, spit takes
- Is it worth your time? Yes. While this has been a rough summer for comedies, particularly R rated ones, the reviews for Girls Trip are quite strong. Throw in an underserved audience (women and/or black – take your pick) and there’s potential for a break out hit. The fact that the film is genuinely funny, unlike the summer’s other female debauchery comedy (cough *Rough Night* cough), could make Girls Trip a winner.
- Gross: $22 million / Final Gross: $70 million
That’s it for this week. Next weekend brings a new animated film for the kiddies, the unfortunate Emoji Movie, as well as Charlize Theron’s Berlin-set period spy film, Atomic Blonde. Plus former presidential candidate Al Gore drops An Inconvenient Sequel, in case you’ve forgotten that planet Earth is completely doomed.