Familiar heroes, villains highlight summer movies

Sean Coffindaffer, Features Writer

The time has arrived in which movie fanatics and plain audiences alike will rave about: summer blockbuster season. This year, the lineup looks quite promising for pure entertainment.

Marvel Studios traditionally kicks off the start of the season on May 5 “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 premiers as,” the sequel to the surprise smash hit of 2014. Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Vin Diesel and Bradley Cooper all return as Peter Quill/Star-Lord, Gamora, Drax, Groot and Rocket respectively as they journey across the stars to evade rouge members of the Ravagers gang and search for Quill’s long-lost father (Kurt Russell).

Two months after the Guardians make their return, a friendly neighborhood web-slinger makes a comeback on July 7 in “Spider-Man: Homecoming.” Tom Holland stars as Peter Parker/Spider-Man as he attempts to navigate through life as both a superhero and a high school student after the game-changing events of “Captain America: Civil War.” Marissa Tomei and Robert Downey, Jr. also return as Aunt May Parker and Tony Stark/Iron Man respectively, while Michael Keaton plays main antagonist Adrian Toomes/The Vulture.

Marvel Studios is not the only one with big superhero movies this year, as DC Comics’ greatest superheroine finally receives her first big screen treatment in “Wonder Woman,” due June 2. Gal Gadot returns from last year’s “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” as the titular character to tell the story of her involvement in World War I and why she disappeared from humanity shortly afterwards. Chris Pine co-stars as American pilot Steve Trevor, with Connie Nielsen portraying Wonder Woman’s mother and Amazonian Queen, Hippolyta.

Aside from superheroes, there are other sequels that fans are really excited for. Johnny Depp returns as Captain Jack Sparrow for a fifth swashbuckling adventure in “Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales” on May 26, dueling robots reach their breaking point in “Transformers: The Last Knight” on June 23, and humanity makes its final stand against its primate conquerors in “War for the Planet of the Apes” on July 14.

Reboots for this summer include “The Mummy” starring Tom Cruise attempting to prevent the worldwide spread of an ancient Egyptian curse due June 9, as well as another visit to the mythical kingdom of Camelot starting May 12 in “King Arthur: Legend of the Sword.”

Anticipated animated movies will also be abundant, all revolving around current franchises. “Cars 3” (June 16) and “Despicable Me 3” (June 30) might mark the end of Pixar’s and Illumination Entertainment’s respective film series, but there will definitely be more to look forward during the summer season. For instance, DreamWorks will begin to adapt Dav Pilkey’s famous children’s books onto the big screen in “Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie” on June 2. Also, Sony will release “The Emoji Movie” on July 28, showing what the modern-age hieroglyphs do in their private lives.

Original films might appear to be scarce at first, but there are some that are quite promising. Christopher Nolan returns to the director’s chair in “Dunkirk” (July 21) which focuses on the infamous World War II battle of the same name, while writer/director Edgar Wright’s upcoming crime comedy “Baby Driver” (August 11) features a getaway car driver (Ansel Elgort) trying to break away from his bank-robbing past.

In conclusion, whether one seeks to hit the beach in “Baywatch” (May 26), read “The Book of Henry” (June 16) or climb “The Dark Tower” (August 4), there is a summer movie for everyone to see and enjoy this blockbuster season.

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