August. The most lackluster of movie months. Caught between the Summer blockbuster season and Oscar season, traditionally, August has settled for not fitting into either. Sure, a few years ago, Guardians of the Galaxy came out in August, and changed things for a while, but in 2018, it looks like August has reverted back to being unimpressive. That’s not to say there aren’t any good movies. Here are five:
Not to be confused with Goodbye, Christopher Robin starring Domnhall Gleason and Margot Robbie, which nobody saw, this one stars Ewan McGregor as the titular character, who deals with the reappearance of Pooh and company in his adult life. It seems to me, that there is a lot of interest in this film where there wasn’t for Goodbye, Christopher Robin, or maybe it’s just a matter of the latter being an independent film versus this, a bigger budgeted Disney release. In any case, I’m intrigued, though to be honest, I never really watched Winnie the Pooh as a child, so nostalgia will not be a factor. I’m guessing it will register in the 70-80% range on Rotten Tomatoes and gross a successful, $90-100 million, with longevity.
An independent film that scored big at Sundance, Searching stars John Cho as a father using social media to find his missing daughter. The films use of social media could be an annoying gimmick, but reviews have me excited.
This summer has been low on dumb fun, and I’m optimistic that The Meg can fill this void. A diverse cast led by Jason Statham find themselves stuck at the bottom of the Pacific Ocean and under attack by a massive creature known as a Megalodon. The trailers suggest to me that this will be a good time. I’m going to say it barely makes fresh status with a low 60% on Rotten Tomatoes and garners a modest $100 million at the box-office.
This wild story about a black cop (played by Denzel Washington’s son, John David Washington) going undercover as a Klu Klux Klansman with the help of his Jewish partner (played by Adam Driver) looks like a return to form for director Spike Lee, who, at his best, is a supremely gifted provocateur. A full wave of reviews for the film have been available for a while now, and all indications are that it delivers. It’s been ages since a Spike Lee Joint (not including his short films) has been relevant in Oscar discussions.
The Happytime Murders
Nothing in the trailers has actually impressed me, but I’m still holding out that Melissa McCarthy and R Rated Muppets can make a funny movie. Directed by Jim Henson’s son, Brian, Happytime Murders imagines a world where humans and Muppets coexist, albeit with the Muppets getting second class status. Melissa McCarthy plays Detective Edwards teaming up with Muppet and private eye, Phil Phillips, to catch a serial killer. The idea has potential, but I could see the final product going either way.