Anticipation Station – Movies of July 2011: Home of the Biggest Blockbusters

I’ve decided to make Anticipation Station a permanent monthly blog entry! Since I don’t do movie reviews as often as before, I think this will be enough for my loyal readers to enjoy.

Last July, The Twilight Saga: Eclipse was flocked by millions of fans in its first weekend. Despicable Me wowed audiences with its original and fun concept. And of course, Inception immersed audiences with its intelligent and thrilling plot (let’s not forget its ending which became a trending topic for a long while)

This year, we have a very packed month as July 2011 is scheduled to have 12 NATIONWIDE RELEASES. As I celebrate my 17th (yeah, I’m that young) birthday on July 2, my only wish is that I can watch all the good movies out in the next 30 days. Which of them do I think is good? Well, you’re just gonna have to read and find out!

LET’S JUMPSTART THIS JULY WITH….

1.) TRANSFORMERS: DARK OF THE MOON


Plot: The Autobots learn of a Cybertronian spacecraft hidden on the Moon, and race against the Decepticons to reach it and to learn its secrets

Director: Michael Bay

Starring: Shia Labouf (Eagle Eye), Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, Hugo Weaving (as Megatron), Ken Jeong (The Hangover Part II), Josh Duhamel (Transformers 1 & 2), Patrick Dempsey (Made of Honor), Tyrese Gibson (Fast Five), Leonard Nemoy (as Sentinel Prime), Patrick Dempsey (Made of Honor), John Malkovich (Jonah Hex)

Comments: I don’t care how big they make this franchise, the fact that Michael Bay directed this movie and that it’s showing in 3D makes me want to NOT to watch this movie as soon as possible. Yeah, the first one was good, but the sequel was very, very disappointing. There’s too much going on that the CGI actually gives you a headache. And even though Megan Fox is gone and a model turned actress replaced her, that’s still not enough to convince me to watch this one in the big screen. Unless someone invites me, I won’t be watching this in movie theaters.

ANTICIPATION LEVEL: Average

———–

2.) LARRY CROWNE

Plot: Unclear of his next steps after losing his job at a big-box retailer, Larry Crowne (Hanks) enrolls at his local college, where he finds a niche among the school’s community of outcasts, and a connection with a teacher (Roberts) who has lost her passion for life.

Director: Tom Hanks

Starring: Tom Hanks (The Da Vinci Code), Julia Roberts (Juno), Sarah Mahoney

Comments: Although Julia Roberts and Tom Hanks seem to gel together in this movie (just like in Charlie Wilson’s War), I don’t thing those two actors alone will be enough to entice me into watching this film.

ANTICIPATION LEVEL: LOW

———–

3.) MONTE CARLO

Plot: Three young women (Gomez, Meester, and Cassidy) vacationing in Paris find themselves whisked away to Monte Carlo after one of the girls is mistaken for a British heiress.

Director: Thomas Bezucha

Starring: Selena Gomez (Wizards of Waverly Place), Katie Cassidy, Leighton Meester (Gossip Girl), Corey Moneith (Glee)

Comments: Four young TV stars get together in what looks like a fun movie that you can’t really take seriously. While it does intrigue me, I don’t think I’ll be spending money to catch this movie early. Besides, it’s skewed to female audiences.

ANTICIPATION LEVEL: Average

———-

4.) ZOOKEEPER

Plot: A group of zoo animals decide to break their code of silence in order to help their lovable zookeeper (Kevin James) find love — without opting to leave his current job for something more illustrious. A woman.

Director: Frank Coraci

Starring: Kevin James (The Dilemma), Rosario Dawson (Unstoppable), Leslie Bibb (Iron Man 2), Ken Jeong (The Hangover Part II), Joe Rogan (Fear Factor)

Comment: Let’s take a look at everything bad about this movie. Kevin James, Kevin James, Kevin James. Oh, and it’s another zoo movie. It probably contains a story that can be finished within 20 minutes.

ANTICIPATION LEVEL: Very Low

———-

5.) HORRIBLE BOSSES

Plot: Three friends conspire to murder their awful bosses when they realize they are standing in the way of their happiness.

Starring: Kevin Spacey (Casino Jack), Charlie Day (It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia), Jason Bateman (Paul), Jason Sudeikis (Hall Pass), Jennifer Aniston (The Bounty Hunter), Michael Albala (The Muppets), PJ Byrne (Dinner For Shmucks), Jamie Foxx (Valentine’s Day), Colin Farrell

Comment: Now this is what I call a unique movie. It’s one of those comedies that actually looks like it will deliver on first glance. I expect a lot from this film, even though American humor doesn’t really humor me that much.

ANTICIPATION LEVEL: HIGH

———

6.) HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS PART 2

Plot: The final chapter begins as Harry, Ron, and Hermione continue their quest of finding and destroying the Dark Lord’s three remaining Horcruxes, the magical items responsible for his immortality. But as the mystical Deathly Hallows are uncovered, and Voldemort finds out about their mission, the biggest battle begins and life as they know it will never be the same again.

Director: David Yates

Starring: Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint, Raplh Fiennes, Jamie Campbell Bower, Helena Bonham Carter, Jason Isaacs, Tom Felton, Alan Rickman, Bonnie Wright, Emma Thompson, Michael Gambon, Maggie Smith, John Hurt

Comments: It All Ends. The final chapter of the classic franchise is about to close and there isn’t any reason for any Potter fan to miss it in its opening weekend. Heck, you shouldn’t even miss it in its opening day! Seriously, the only way to watch it is in IMAX on opening day. Who’s with me?

ANTICIPATION LEVEL: EXTREME!

————–

7.) WINNIE THE POOH


Plot: During an ordinary day in Hundred Acre Wood, Winnie the Pooh sets out to find some honey. Misinterpreting a note from Christopher Robin, Pooh convinces Tigger, Rabbit, Piglet, Owl, Kanga, Roo, and Eeyore that their young friend has been captured by a creature named “Backson” and they set out to save him.

Director: Stephen J. Anderson and Don Hall

Starring: Craig Ferguson, John Cleese, Jum Cummings, Jack Boulter, Tom Kenny, Bud Luckey, Travis Oates

Comments: I think I’m a little too old for Winnie The Pooh. This Disney movie is neither a remake, a sequel nor a reboot. It’s just a new episode that will give kids plenty to enjoy and will please lots of old fans. I wasn’t a big fan of this show though, so I don’t think I’ll be watching it.

ANTICIPATION LEVEL: Average

———–

8.) CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE FIRST AVENGER

Plot: After being deemed unfit for military service, Steve Rogers volunteers for a top secret research project that turns him into Captain America, a superhero dedicated to defending America’s ideals.

Director: Joe Johnston

Starring: Chris Evans (Push), Hugo Weaving, Stanley Tucci, Tommy Lee Jones, Richard Armitage, Natalie Dormer, Dominic Cooper, Hayley Atwell

Comments: Out of all superhero movies out for the year, Captain America looks the most unique and the most interesting. Yeah, I loved X-Men: First Class, and Thor rocked too, but looking at the trailers and posters, how could you not expect this movie to be the best among the rest? If everything goes well, get ready for record-breaking news by The Avengers. Chris Evans has already shown improvement over his Push and Fantastic Four performances, so I believe he’s ready to tackle a more serious role. The only problem for me is that the director doesn’t have a good track record

ANTICIPATION LEVEL: VERY HIGH

————

9.) FRIENDS WITH BENEFITS

Plot: While trying to avoid the clichés of Hollywood romantic comedies, Dylan (Timberlake) and Jamie (Kunis) soon discover however that adding the act of sex to their friendship does lead to complications.

Director: Will Gluck

Starring: Justin Timberlake, Mila Kunis, Patricia Clarkson, Jenna Elfman, Bryan Greenberg, Richard Jenkins

Comments: You can already guess the plot from the title, but who cares when the leading actors are Justin Timberlake and Mila Kunis? Justin is an underrated actor whose track record is actually better than most people in Hollywood! Mila Kunis is a veteran when it comes to making people laugh. And oh come on guys, she’s freaking hot!

ANTICIPATION LEVEL: HIGH

————

10.) COWBOYS & ALIENS

Plot: A spaceship arrives in Arizona, 1873, to take over the Earth, starting with the Wild West region. A posse of cowboys are all that stand in their way.

Director: Jon Favreau

Starring: Daniel Craig, Olivia Wilde, Harrison Ford, Sam Rockwell, Paul Dano, Clancy Brown

Comments: Most critics think this will be the Jonah Hex of 2011, expected to receive awful reviews and little money at the box office. I don’t think so. In fact, this is one of my most anticipated movies for the year. Craig and Wilde are big factors, but the thing that intrigues me the most is the setting. Will Jon Favreau jumpstart another franchise like Iron Man? We’ll see.

ANTICIPATION LEVEL: HIGH

———–

11.) CRAZY, STUPID, LOVE

Plot: Cal (Steve Carell) and Emily (Julianne Moore) have the perfect life together living the American dream… until Emily asks for a divorce. Now Cal, Mr Husband, has to navigate the single scene with a little help from his professional bachelor friend Jacob Palmer (Ryan Gosling). Make that a lot of help…

Director: Glenn Ficara, John Recua

Starring: Emma Stone, Ryan Gosling, Steve Carrell, Julianne Moore, Kevin Bacon, Marisa Tomei, Crystal Reed

Comments: I like the idea of this movie, but it looks like Hitch 2.0. Nevertheless, its lack of originality is saved by its cast. Emma Stone continues to ride with success and when you pair her with Ryan Gosling, it almost feels like their storyline is a whole different movie altogether. So basically, if you watch this movie, you’ll be treated with 2 storylines with little connection between the two.

ANTICIPATION LEVEL: AVERAGE

———–

12.) THE SMURFS (in 3D)

Plot: When the evil wizard Gargamel chases the tiny blue Smurfs out of their village, they tumble from their magical world and into ours.

Director: Raja Gosnell

Starring: Neil Patrick Harris (How I Met Your Mother), Jayma Mays (Glee), Hank Azaria (Night at the Museum), Jonathan Winters, Katy Perry, George Lopez, B.J. Novak (The Office), Wolfgang Puck

Comments: There has been a lot of backlash towards this movie. If only because at this day and age these types of reboots aren’t what people want to see. I would’ve dismissed this movie too if not for some of its cast. I just hope the talents of Neil Patrick Harris, Jayma Mays, Hank Azaria and B.J. Novak are put to good use.

ANTICIPATION LEVEL: AVERAGE

——-

So there you go. 12 new movies, plus limited screenings for John Carpenter’s The Ward and Another Earth will be available for everyone to satiate their hunger for more blockbuster movies. I’ve already decided which movies I’m going to catch theaters this month (4), so now it’s time for you to decide.

POLL TIME! Out of the 12 films, pick 5 movies you’d like to see the most. Thanks for reading my blog and see you next time!

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