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The 2018 Film Release Calendar: July

It’s January, which means it’s preview time up here at B+ Movie Blog.

I don’t really peruse other places, but if I were to guess, I would say I’m the only person that goes this deep on their preview coverage for a year. I go month to month based on what’s scheduled to come out, preview like 200 extra movies that you probably have never even heard about as of now, and then bring back all the stuff from last year and previous years that I’ve been tracking that hasn’t come out yet. I’m not the kind of person who just goes, “Oh my god, Avengers! Wrinkle in Time! (Insert other movies the studios are paying us to talk up to fit the narrative to get us more clicks)!” If you ever see a slideshow from me, then you know I’ve given up.

The reason I do this is purely for me, though I imagine anyone stumbling on this will get something out of it to. What I try to do is preview everything so I’m aware of it when it comes out, and, to make it interesting for myself, try to guess what I’m gonna think of it when I do see it. That way, I can see what films surprised me or disappointed me from every angle (before, during and after).

We’re doing July today.

July

Ant-Man and the Wasp

As Scott Lang balances being both a Super Hero and a father, Hope van Dyne and Dr. Hank Pym present an urgent new mission that finds the Ant-Man fighting alongside The Wasp to uncover secrets from their past.

The first Marvel movie, post-Infinity War. So I guess these people live.

The first Ant-Man was fun. Kind of inconsequential, but fun. Not sure they can reach that level again, but I’m willing to wait and see.

3.5 stars is the standard Marvel number. I’m feeling like we might get 3 out of this. BUT… Rudd, Lilly and Douglas are back. Pena’s back. Michelle Pfeiffer is there as the original Wasp. Laurence Fishburne is the villain. Which is cool. Walton Goggins is there now too. I like the cast. So we’ll stick with 3.5 stars and see what we get. It’s gonna be one or the other.

Also — Laurence Fisburne… Silver Surfer, Perry White and now Goliath. I like when people do a bunch of these movies and nobody cares.

The Purge 4

The film will be a prequel that will focus on the events that lead up to the very first Purge event.

Prequel? Okay.

The director did Burning Sands, which was fine. The creator of the franchise, who directed the first three, wrote this one.

The franchise has always been watchable, so we’ll stick with 3 stars. They’re all fine. Thinking we might have reached saturation on this, but we’ll see.

Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation

Mavis surprises Dracula with a family voyage on a luxury Monster Cruise Ship so he can take a vacation from providing everyone else’s vacation at the hotel. The rest of Drac’s Pack cannot resist going along. But once they leave port, romance arises when Dracula meets the mysterious ship Captain, Ericka. Now it’s Mavis’ turn to play the overprotective parent, keeping her dad and Ericka apart. Little do they know that his “too good to be true” love interest is actually a descendant of Abraham Van Helsing, ancient nemesis to Dracula and all other monsters.

Why are there three of these movies? The first one wasn’t even that great.

2.5 stars. I’ll assume I won’t care and it won’t be straight up awful. But I never rule out the possibility.

The Nun

A priest named Father Burke is sent to Rome to investigate the mysterious death of a nun.

Horror movie, don’t care.

2.5 stars.

Demian Bichir is the priest, Taissa Farmiga is the nun. Or a nun. I really could care less.

Skyscraper

FBI Hostage Rescue Team leader and U.S. war veteran Will Ford, who now assesses security for skyscrapers. On assignment in China he finds the tallest, safest building in the world suddenly ablaze, and he’s been framed for it. A wanted man on the run, Will must find those responsible, clear his name and somehow rescue his family who is trapped inside the building…above the fire line.

So, Towering Inferno in China, with The Rock? Okay.

3 stars.

Alita: Battle Angel

An action-packed story of one young woman’s journey to discover the truth of who she is and her fight to change the world.

She got the Pixar eyes. They’re trying to make her more endearing by digitally altering the eyes. Looks creepy to me. Maybe it’ll work for other people?

Going from James Cameron to Robert Rodriguez as director isn’t usually the best sign.

But, I do like Rosa Salazar, and it’s nice seeing her get a lead role. Christoph Waltz as the Gepetto of sorts is an interesting choice. Jennifer Connelly and Mahershala Ali are also good signs.

Looks overly CGI. And the story doesn’t seem that interesting. So I have to say 3 stars. I would like to get 3.5 out of this, but I’m not holding my breath.

Mamma Mia: Here We Go Again

In this sequel to Mamma Mia! Sophie learns about her mother’s past while pregnant.

They started putting out trailers for this already, which is how I know this is happening. Seems they slashed the budget and mostly wrote Meryl out of the movie, so she could show up in a cameo at the end and they’d get to sell it on her name and not have to pay her.

Are there that many extra ABBA songs you can put out there? Or did the first one make so much money it doesn’t matter and they’re gonna clear a decent amount of cash no matter what?

Storyline-wise, this is the Godfather II of the Mamma Mia saga.

Lily James is young Meryl, Cher is here, and pretty much everyone else is back.

I didn’t particularly care about the first one, even though it was fine. This one, I’m assuming I straight up won’t care.

2.5 stars.

Mission: Impossible 6

No plot, but does it even matter at this point?

We know we’re getting at least 3.5 stars out of this. The last couple felt like 4 stars.

We have Cruise, we have Pegg, we have Rhames, we have Rebecca Ferguson back. Alec Baldwin is back. Henry Cavill is in this one — plus moustache, as we all know from Justice League. Michelle Monaghan is back, but she’s basically a cameo in all of these at this point. Sean Harris seems to be the villain.

I should say 4 stars here, but something tells me we’re on the downslide of Cruise’s career and this one might slip a little bit. So I’ll say 3.5 stars and let it go up to 4 if it’s gonna continue the excellence this franchise has exhibited to this point.

Cruise generally steps up his game for these movies, but he got injured like three times on this set, and I’m starting to get the feeling that this franchise (as well as Cruise as an action star) is like that athlete who’s like 36, 37, and they’re starting to get injured a bunch, and you still love them even though they’re no longer what they once were, and you just know the end is coming but want one more good year out of them.

I’m gonna lower my expectations a movie too early rather than a movie too late, is what I’m saying. Maybe we’ll get 4, but I’m gonna temper myself on this one.

Teen Titans Go! To the Movies

A villain’s maniacal plan for world domination sidetracks five teenage superheroes who dream of Hollywood stardom.

I’ve heard the title of this, but I have no idea what the show is or what it’s about. So we gotta say 2.5 stars. Don’t know, and can’t assume anything other than indifference.

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