MONTHLY HIGHLIGHTS: July

I’m sad that I am already fatigued of the summer blockbuster season and we are only two months in. The remaining offerings are not much to get excited about, with the exception of one movie that I’ll get to later. However, this summer has offered an excellent selection of limited release and independent films and that’s where my hope for July lies. This July will have five Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays which only happens about every 5 or 6 years, so there are a lot of opportunities for great success (or crippling failure).

Film Releases

Terri
Released on July 1

This independent comedy gets a very limited release this week and will expand throughout the month. It stars John C. Reilly as a troubled school principal and Jacob Wysocki as an overweight outcast. The two develop a friendship of sorts and drama and laughter apparently ensue. Based on the trailer the film looks like a solid comedy that doesn’t bring anything new to the table, but its protagonist seems so endearing that it could very well be great.

Project Nim
Released on July 8

Summer usually always brings with it one or two prolific documentaries and we have yet to be blessed with one in 2011. There are a couple strong contenders on the way and this is one that I have high hopes for. The story of a chimp that was raised by a human family in the 1970s and what that experiment told us about human/animal relationships and evolution. The film screened at Sundance and was very well-received so I look forward to what it has to offer.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part II
Released on July 15

If you follow Film Misery even casually then you are no doubt aware of my geekish obsession with Harry Potter, both the books and the films. I am sad to see it end, but excited to see the Battle of Hogwarts, which is to take place during a majority of the final film’s running time. We will be doing a retrospective of the entire Harry Potter franchise on the Film Misery Podcast, which should only increase my anticipation.

Winnie the Pooh
Released on July 15

This is a pure nostalgia pick and I am very excited. Who didn’t grow up watching the film versions of Winnie the Pooh? This version appears to be very closely based on the original A.A. Milne book and it has a lot of the segments that were so fantastic in the original movies (finding a tail for Eeyore and other such adventures). The Winnie the Pooh characters offer so much truth about childhood that they are a joy for adults and children alike.

Tabloid
Released on July 15

If there is one movie that is set to be the “Documentary of the Summer,” I think it will probably be Errol Morris’ Tabloid. This is a story about a young Beauty Queen who was charged with abducting a Mormon Missionary. Knowing Errol Morris it will also reveal much about the state of journalism and the natural existence of human bias. It should be entertaining and enlightening.

Another Earth
Released on July 22

Low-budget sci-fi has been pretty good over the last several years with success for movies like Moon and District 9. Another Earth looks to be very close to those same lines with a psychological aspect as well as low-budget special effects. It tells the story of the discovery of another planet that mirrors Earth from the ecological make-up to the life forms that inhabit it. This film will get a limited release so it might not make it into a theatre near you until August.

Crazy, Stupid, Love
Released on July 29

It is remarkably rare that I have a romantic comedy on my most anticipated anything list because recent additions to this genre have been so embarrassingly banal. However, the cast within this movie including Emma Stone, Ryan Gosling, Steve Carrell, Kevin Bacon, Marisa Tomei, and JULIANN MOORE leads me to believe it could be smarter than your average boy meets girl farce.

Attack the Block
Released on July 29

This film has gotten a lot of positive word-of-mouth since it premiered at South by Southwest and has subsequently been screening around the country. It also apparently falls into the low-budget sci-fi genre, although it appears to have more comedy than comparable films. I know little about it besides the fact that it’s British and contains aliens, but I will give it a shot.

Life in a Day
Released on July 29

This is the documentary that came from the project where everyone was asked to upload and submit a YouTube video that took place during one particular day. Produced by Ridley Scott and directed by Kevin MacDonald, I think the idea is fascinating and I will definitely see it when it finally expands to a local theatre.

Film Releases I Don’t Care About:
Transformers: Dark of the Moon – July 1
Larry Crowne – July 1
Horrible Bosses – July 8
Zookeeper – July 8
Captain America: The First Avenger – July 22
Friends With Benefits – July 22
Cowboys & Aliens – July 29
The Smurfs – July 29

Film Events

New Top 200 Movies of All-Time
Coming on July 22

There isn’t much in terms of film events that fall in the month of July, but since this month does contain my birthday (July 22) I will be updating the All-Time Top 200 Movies list. There will be some significant changes this year so look forward to that at the end of the month.

What movies or events are you most anticipating during the month of July?

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  • The final “Harry Potter” should be awesome. Haven’t heard of most of these others, but hopefully they’ll be good. You’re not looking forward to “Horrible Bosses”? Sure, it could be a disaster, but the promos I’ve seen look promising.

    July for me, though, is defined by one thing and one thing only: “Breaking Bad” season 4. Anyone who’s not watching this series… you’ve still got a couple of weeks to catch up, and it would be time well spent. It’s cinematic both in scope and in filming style, and features some of the best acting and writing you’ll ever see (on the big screen or the small screen, doesn’t matter).

    So anyway… that’s it for me.

  • I’ve heard almost nothing but good things about ‘Breaking Bad.’ I don’t have cable, but I might have to watch some of the older seasons.

  • Asif Khan

    i can’t wait for Harry Potter 7 b :)

  • Totally all about the Cap. I’ve been wanting to see a good Captain America movie since I could read comic books (the movie from 1990 CERTAINLY doesn’t count as good). Cap is just a good guy, an asthmatic weakling with a strong heart who’s given a chance to prove himself. He’s a leader, a fighter, a soldier, a friend. In short, he is the quintessential hero.

    Oh and Harry Potter I’ll definitely see. Kinda looking forward to it, actually, in a real sense (not just an ironic “can’t wait for it to be over” sense). Interested to hear Alex and Phil’s thoughts on the movie series during the upcoming podcasts.

  • Jose

    Well Winnie the Pooh and Harry Potter are the biggest must see for me, but I’m also excited for Cowboys & Aliens, Horrible Bosses, Another Earth, kind of anticipating Captain America, and having seen the new Transformers movie, I can honestly say that it was kind of fun.

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