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Your Totally Curated, Five-Minute Summer Movie Preview

Published on May 15, 2017

I got burned last summer. We all did. Ghostbusters. Suicide Squad. Independence Day: Resurgence. Jason Bourne. Alice Through the Looking Glass. And did I mention Suicide Squad?! But to quote Jennifer Lopez’ more underrated movies, Enough. The Class of ’17 features (at least) 10 delectable offerings. And I’m not just throwing out hyperbole: I’ve already seen a bunch of them and can personally vouch for their quality. In fact, I’m willing to predict at least one will entice you to physically step away from the Hulu and head to the theater. (Remember: Elisabeth Moss’ steely glare will still be there when you return.)


The story: Mitch Buchanan (Dwayne Johnson) leads an elite squad of lifeguards — who all happen to run in slo-mo on the beach. Zac Efron plays a dense Ryan Lochte-like newbie.

The buzz: Those expecting a kitschy 21 Jump Street-like comedy might be surprised that the big screen version of the brainless ‘90s wonder is more akin to a seaside version of The Fast & The Furious. In other news, Efron’s abs!

Release date: May 25

Wonder Woman

The story: This is the origin tale of one Diana Prince (Gal Gadot), a warrior who helps lead a revolution in World War I.

The buzz: Gadot’s all-business (if a bit enigmatic) take on Wonder Woman was the lone highlight of Batman V. Superman: Dawn of Justice. Now she spars with Chris Pine’s charismatic military pilot Steve Trevor instead of Ben Affleck’s morose caped crusader and gets to kick ass all by herself. Trust me, this is a good thing.

Release date: June 3

The Beguiled

The story: The Southern yarn set in Virginia during the Civil War centers on a girls school — led by Nicole Kidman’s headmistress — that takes in a wounded Union soldier vet (Colin Farrell). Spoiler: They don’t bake him cookies.

The buzz: Sofia Coppola’s take on the 1971 spooky classic earned a plum competition spot at this year’s Cannes Film Festival. She’s overdue for a provocative hit, and the trailer alone is spine-chilling.

Release date: June 23

The Big Sick

The story: This year’s rom-com hero is. . . that guy from Silicon Valley. Kumail Nanjiani and his wife, Emily V. Gordon, co-wrote this story based on their own unique culture-clash courtship. He stars as a Pakistani-American stand-up comic whose white girlfriend (Zoe Kazan) becomes gravely ill.

The buzz: A major crowd-pleaser at January’s Sundance Film Festival, the film has the smarts and the heart to be the feel-great sleeper of the season. FYI, Judd Apatow is a co-producer.

Release date: June 23

Olsen and Renner are on the case.

Wind River

The story: A teen girl is found dead and barefoot in the dead of winter on a Native American reservation. An FBI agent (Elizabeth Olsen) teams up with the local game hunter (Jeremy Renner) to solve the murder.

The buzz: Does the name Taylor Sheridan mean anything to do? What if I said that he wrote Sicario and Hell or High Water? Exactly. He wrote and directed this stark, well-crafted chiller, which rivets from beginning to end.

Release date: August 4

Holland is under the mask!

Spider-Man: Homecoming

The story: Peter Parker, Uncle Ben, Aunt May, Queens, Stan Lee cameo, blah blah blah. Brit Tom Holland takes over the role of the teen web-slinger that Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield have officially aged out of. With great power comes a great mentor: Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.)

The buzz: Holland held his ground in last year’s Captain America flick. But the real draw here is Michael Keaton as Vulture the villain. The man was the original big screen Batman and skewered the superhero genre in the amazingly aptly title Birdman! Nicely played.

Release date: July 7


The story: The Dark Knight auteur Christopher Nolan executes is his first period film — and true story. This World War II drama focuses on the evacuation of Allied soldiers trapped on a beach opposite the English Channel.

The buzz: Back in February, Warner Bros. screened just five minutes of footage for press in an Imax theater. It was a dizzying, mesmerizing whirl. Looks like Harry Styles made a savvy choice for a film debut.

Release date: July 21

Rough Night

The story: Scarlett Johansson’s coke-fueled bachelorette party goes fantastically awry. (Hey, is that a dead stripper or are you just happy to see me?)

The buzz: With a cast that also includes Kate McKinnon, Jillian Bell (22 Jump Street), Zoe Kravitz , Ilana Glazer (Broad City), this raucous comedy has the potential to be the Magic Mike version of Bad Moms.

Release date: June 16



The story: Kathryn Bigelow‘s latest project focuses on the 1967 riot and rebellion in downtown Detroit, which left three young African-American men dead at the hands of the police.  John Boyega, Anthony Mackie, Jason Mitchell and John Krasinski lead the ensemble.

The buzz: If anyone can take a hard look at an ugly (and timely) chapter of American history, it’s the gritty director of The Hurt Locker and Zero Dark Thirty. The Oscar race begins here.

Release Date: August 4


Elgort jams out because of his ear problems.

Baby Driver

The story: His name is Baby and don’t even think about putting him in a corner. He’s just going to high-tail it out of there. Ansel Elgort is the title character, an earbud-wearing heist getaway driver who falls for an innocent doe-eyed waitress (Lily James).

The buzz: With its high-octane soundtrack and too-cool-for-school vibe, audiences at SXSW went berserk for cult director Edgar Wright‘s quirky caper. It runs out of gas a bit too quickly — but there’s cause to applaud brazen originality. (What, you’d rather see Transformers 5?)

Release date: June 28