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The 2019 Film Release Calendar: July

New year, new movies.

I begin every new year by taking a look at what movies there are to come out. It helps me to be aware of stuff so I can actively track it throughout the year, and I think it’s helpful for most people who care about movies to at least be informed of what’s going on. Far too often do I talk to my friends who are casually into movies, and they have no idea what’s coming out or when the stuff they want to see is supposed to come out.

Of course, when I do something, I really do it, so instead of just a casual preview of the big 35 movies of the year, I go all out. You’re gonna get everything as it’s currently scheduled to come out, plus another 200 or so movies that are not dated but are finished and ready to come out, plus another 100 or so that I’ve been tracking from previous years. I dare to say that no one on the internet goes as deep into their coverage as I do.

Today is July.

July

Spider-Man: Far from Home

Peter Parker and his friends go on summer vacation to Europe, where Peter finds himself trying to save his friends against a villain known as Mysterio.

The question is whether or not they can recapture what they did in the first one. That’s a very tall order.

My gut tells me, because it’s both a Marvel movie and a sequel, to go 3.5 stars. So that’s what I’ll do. If it’s 4 stars and as entertaining as the first one, I’ll happily be wrong. Or I’ll be right and it’ll fall into the same realm as pretty much every other Marvel movie. That seems like the most likely scenario. So we’ll go with that one.

17 Bridges

Follows a disgraced detective in the NYPD who is given a shot at redemption. Thrust into a citywide manhunt for a cop killer, he begins to undercover a massive conspiracy that links his fellow cops to a criminal empire and must decide who he is hunting and who is actually hunting him. During the manhunt, Manhattan is completely locked down for the first time in its history – no exit or entry to the island including all 17 bridges.

Good premise. Will they pull it off? Doubtful. I mean, they can pull it off decently, but really well? That seems unlikely. But the July placement means they have confidence in it.

The director is a TV guy who did some Game of Thrones and Penny Dreadful.

Chawick Boseman stars, and I wonder if that’s the only reason it’s getting July placement. This feels like a September movie to me. Let’s see if this date holds.

My gut tells me this is nothing more than a 3 star movie. Feels like a standard triller. Takes a lot to overcome that. At best this should be 3.5 stars. It’s not Steve McQueen directing it, you know? 3 or 3.5 stars almost exclusively, and it certainly feels like a standard 3. Honestly, if Liam Neeson were in this, this would come out in January/February or September and it would be a decent 3-star action movie. Why should I treat it any different than that right now?

Stuber

A detective recruits his Uber driver into an unexpected night of adventure.

So it’s Collateral, but a comedy.

Kumail Nanjiani is the Uber driver and apparently Dave Bautista is the detective. The director did Goon and What If, which were both solid movies.

It’s a studio comedy, so I can’t guess higher than 3 stars. Maybe I can get 3.5 stars out of this because the director’s previous two movies were fairly solid. But I can’t, in good conscience, go higher than 3, sight unseen.

The Lion King

The IMDB synopsis at the moment basically says it all: “CGI re-imagining of the 1994 Disney classic.”

4 stars, but ONLY because The Lion King is the best movie Disney’s ever made. I love the story. And I’m sure I’ll really enjoy this the first time. Just like I really enjoyed The Jungle Book the first time. And then not since. It’ll be a 3.5 star movie that can get the bump to 4 because of the effects. Worst case, it’ll be 3.5. There’s nothing in between. It will be one or the other.

Once Upon a Time in Hollywood

A faded TV actor and his stunt double embark on an odyssey to make a name for themselves in the film industry during the Helter Skelter reign of terror in 1969 Los Angeles.

It’s Quentin Tarantino’s new movie. Everyone’s in it. You’ve been hearing about this for like two years now. What is there to even say about it?

5 stars. How can I not? It’s tough for me to not love a Quentin movie. What am I getting from this at worst, honestly? 4 stars? Okay. I’ll take 4. More than likely I’m getting either 4.5 stars or 5 stars and a top ten movie. He’s done it basically every time by now. The only one that wasn’t in the top ten was Grindhouse, which was a style exercise and a different thing entirely.

I will say I’m more nervous about this than any other film he’s made. I was slightly nervous about Hateful Eight, but still knew that would be great. This one, of anything he’s done, has the greatest chance for me not to like it as much as everything else. But I have to trust him at this point, so we’ll say 5 stars and see how it turns out.

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