BEST: Dawn of the Planet of the Apes. Original review HERE. Apes narrowly beat out three other contenders to earn this title. It's a solid film that wins because it feels so different from every other summer blockbuster. I mean, the fact that they can focus on the tension between a couple of primates for a good solid hour is beyond impressive. And don't even get me started on those downright incredible special effects.
WORST: Maleficent. Original review HERE. I still am honestly shocked that anyone could and does like this garbage, let alone love it. I thought the movie looked dumb when I saw the trailers, but I couldn't have imagined in my wildest dreams how awful it would truly be. All beauty, no substance and desecrating one of Disney's most beloved classics and most iconic villains. Ugh times a billion.
HERE. The previews for this film made it look like they finally got Godzilla right. And perhaps they did… but they sure as heck didn't get the humans around him right, which to make a lasting film is just as crucial. Incredible action, at the end of the day, should be secondary to memorable characters. When you don't care if they live or die, it doesn't make you as a member of the audience feel very invested in the movie. Shame. The previews really showed its potential.
HERE. Every time this movie is praised, a fairy dies... Or an angel loses its wings. Actually what really happens is that hacks are rewarded while creativity and originality are pushed to the side. This movie is the exact same movie as The Avengers! Do you not noticed this, or do you just not care if you get the same thing repackaged a billion times over? If you don't that's fine...just don't act like this is God's gift to the cinema when it is nothing more than a couple of entertaining hours.
MOST UNDERRATED: The Amazing Spider-man 2. Original review HERE. So many haters of this movie. You may not have liked the villains, but that doesn't take away from how great the human drama is from the main characters. They make you care about this story more than you probably should, and to me that kind of connection to a character in the film is invaluable. It's not so much the love story as the feeling that these characters are actually human… Which is so rare to see in almost any film released now, let alone a comic book movie. Yet people can't get past the villain(s) or pacing. Didn't stop them from liking Guardians...
MOVIE I'M MOST ASHAMED I HAVEN'T SEEN: Boyhood. There goes all my street cred for not having seen the most critically lauded film of the year right? I will eventually, and I can't wait. You don't get much better than perfect scores from Rotten Tomatoes and Metacritic. Plus everyone I've talked to has only overwhelmingly good things to say about it.
HERE. Malfoy plays his usual sniveling type in the wonderful period drama Belle. Meanwhile, Harry Potter himself can be found in the romantic comedy that I earlier reviewed this week, What If. Both films are incredibly solid, and draw you in. I only wish that more people knew about them.
MY 5 FAVORITE MAJOR RELEASE FILMS OF THE SUMMER:
1. Dawn of the Planet of the Apes. Can't wait to see where the franchise takes us next.
2. Edge of Tomorrow. Loved this so much I saw it 3 times.
3. X-men Days of Future Past. Original review HERE. This film was so much fun and wins the best film sequence so far this year. What's his face mutant was AWESOME.
4. The Amazing Spider-man 2. Marc Webb brings the heart to this Spider-man and I can't get enough.
5. The Fault in Our Stars. Original review HERE. You can hate on this film all you want for being a melodrama, but there is some sincerity and earnestness here that you don't find much in cinema today.
Farewell summer cinema. See you this time next year.