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Matrix Reloaded...Terminator III...
Member Name: litefoot
Date: 08/04/03, updated on 08/04/03 (598 review reads)
Advantages: Great films to look forward to
Disadvantages: Some disappointments in the offing..., stand up Lara Croft...
The summer season at the cinema draws ever closer and Hollywood will be rolling out it's big investments of the year in a hard fought battle for high returns. Here are the high profile films coming soon to a cinema near you.
Ian McKellan, Halle Berry, Patrick Stewart
They're back! After an extremely successful first film ($300 million gross) our favourite mutants return for another outing. Except this time there's far more of them - you have returnees Professor Xavier (Patrick Stewart), Wolverine (Famke Janssen), Cyclops (James Marsden), Rogue (Anna Paquin), Storm (Halle Berry), Mystique (Rebecca Romjin Stamos) and Magneto (Ian McKellen). Add to this lot, Nightcrawler (Alan Cumming), Death Strike (Kelly 'Scorpion King' Hu), Iceman (Shawn Ashmore), Pyro (Aaron Stamford)... the word 'overcooked' leaps to mind. How can you give depth to these characters when there are so many to fit in? The story in this one has an unknown assassin (possibly a mutant) making an attempt on the President's life - which results in a public clamour against mutants. Add to the mix military leader William Stryker (Brian Cox) who wants to eradicate the mutants. This is number one of three films most likely to rule the box office this summer.
THE MATRIX RELOADED
Keanu Reeves, Laurence Fishburne, Carrie Anne Moss
And of course, this is number two. The second sequel in my list (you'll notice a vague trend), this is the film I'm most looking forward to this summer, as reports seem to suggest it blows the first film away in terms of spectacle (which raked in $450 million). The first film not only set a benchmark for special effects but was a damn good film too, a rare combination in these days of cinema.
If you've seen the trailer for The Matrix Reloaded you'll know good this looks. Car chases down highways that def
y the laws of gravity... Neo battling 100 Agent Smiths (yep, he seems to have survived from the first film)... and we get to see rebel underground city Zion. Messr's Reeves, Fishburne and Moss are of course your guides. In the run up to the release of this film, the makers have produced a series of animated shorts with the umbrella title the Matrix. They will be premiered of the next couple of months before other films and are also available online.
Adam Sandler, Jack Nicholson, Marisa Tomei
Bet you haven't heard of this. Take one comedy box office star who rakes the cash in. Combine with brilliant actor who's more than a match for anything on screen with him and you have Anger Management with Sandler and Nicholson. After Nicholson's subdued performance in About Schmidt this year I'm hoping this sees a return to his trademark funny performances. When Sandler's businessman is wrongly assigned to an Anger Managment programme he encounters Nicholson's hostile instructor, and chaos ensues.
2 FAST 2 FURIOUS
Paul Walker, Tyrese Gibson
Hurrah! Does The Fast and the Furious really need a sequel? Well Hollywood thinks it does, and money talks, so back comes Paul Walker's undercover cop (alas, no Diesel this time out, which may spell a flop) for another round of vehicle shenanigans. Officer O'Conner (Walker) delves deep into the world of the Miami racing circuit after his badge is taken away from him.
Jim Carrey, Morgan Freeman, Jennifer Aniston
Bruce Nolan (Carrey) complains a lot. Bruce complains to God (Freeman). God gives Bruce his powers. I think you can imagine the kind of comedy that follows. Carrey's more dramatic projects (Man on the Moon, The Majestic) have stumbled financially so Carrey returns to what h
e's best at - comedy. Aniston plays his long suffering partner.
CHARLIE'S ANGELS: FULL THROTTLE
Drew Barrymore, Cameron Diaz, Lucy Liu, Matt LeBlanc, Demi Moore
Now wasn't the first film so much fun. Yeah yeah say the critics it was a load of rubbish but it was FUN. Fun fun fun! Back come our three leading ladies (Barrymore, Diaz, Liu) which is quite a surprise really as you'd think the lineup would have changed, Hollywood being Hollywood. Sadly no Bill Murray this time out. Demi Moore is your villain and Crispin Glover's henchman returns from the first film. But John Cleese as Liu's Dad? We'll see :)
Eric Bana, Jennifer Connelly, Nick Nolte
This is number three of my films likely to be, well, simply brilliant. Why do I say that, you may ask?
1) It's based on a comic (The Incredible Hulk) and comic adaptations are very successful financially (even if Daredevil wasn't a good film, it's done well enough at the box office).
2) It's directed by Ang Lee (Sense and Sensibility, The Ice Storm, Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon). The man can't do wrong. He brings a certain magic to film that Hollywood struggles to find, not to mention heart.
Fingers crossed for this one!
TERMINATOR III: RISE OF THE MACHINES
Arnold Schwarzenegger, Nick Stahl, Claire Danes
Ooh controversial! Cameron doesn't direct! Cameron doesn't write or produce! In fact, Cameron the master of the first two films does NOTHING! But Arnold is of course back and he's picked up a hefty $30 million paycheque for this one. Unfortunately Linda Hamilton and Edward Furlong do not return. The fans out there may be worried but at the same time they'll be looking forward to this too; it's got a reasonably good director in Jonath
an Mostow (U-571, Breakdown, Below) so chances are it'll be worth a look. This time out, the T-800 and John O'Connor (In the Bedroom's Nick Stahl) team up against a new terminator, the T-X (a female one, who just happens to look like supermodel Kristanna Loken).
THE LEAGUE OF EXTRAORDINARY GENTLEMEN
Sean Connery, Richard Roxburgh
Another comic adaptation. Sean Connery heads the cast as Allan Quatermain. It's an alternate Victorian era and Queen Victoria commissions a variety of familiar characters to fight a madman bent on world domination: Dorien Gray, Mina Harker, Tom Sawyer, The Invisble Man, Dr Henry Jekyll, Mycroft Holmes (played by recent new BBC Sherlock Holmes Richard Roxburgh) and Captain Nemo are the players.
Jason Biggs, Seann William Scott, Alsyon Hannigan
The second and last sequel to AMERICAN PIE sees Jim (Biggs) getting married to Michelle (Hannigan). The boys return (and thankfully that includes classic comedy character Stifler) but the girls don't. Eugene Levy returns as Jim's father. It's going to be hard to beat the last film which was extremely funny.
PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN
Johnny Depp, Geoffrey Rush, Orlando Bloom, Keira Knightly
What successful pirate films can you think of from recent times? Well, Renny Harlin's Cutthroat Island was a disaster. Spielberg's Hook was beaten to death by the critics (a good film, but not perhaps what everyone expected). And that's it - until now. Johnny Depp, Geoffrey Rush (in true villainy mode), Orlando 'Legolas' Bloom and Keira 'Bend it Like Beckham' Knightly star in this high seas adventure.
LARA CROFT: THE CRADLE OF LIFE
Angelina Jolie, Chris Barrie, Gerard Butler
Hmmm. The word 'disappointment' doesn't quite cover how most p
eople felt about the first Tomb Raider film. Poor script, confusing plot, Chris 'Dwarf' Barrie wasted (that's almost a criminal offence)... the only thing good to come out of this was Angelina Jolie. Well she's back with a new film and, thankfully, a new director. And Barrie gets an expanded role. But can they get it right this time round?
Now I'm sure there are some titles you think I've left off the list... but as far as I am aware these are the big blockbusters being rolled out this summer... if you think I've left one off, you're welcome to point it out :)