Whether it’s the rise of the Decepticons, Terminator’s salvation, G.I. Joe’s live action debut or the return of Sacha Baron Cohen, it’s time to beat the heat with a pail of popcorn, a bucket of soda and all the action you can fit into two hours.


Next Day Air (Summit)

“Scrubs”’ Donald Faison, backed by Mos Def and Mike Epps, plays a delivery man who accidentally delivers a package filled with bricks of cocaine at the wrong address. Think of it as Burn After Reading meets Scarface ... but funny.

Star Trek (Paramount)

The 11th Star Trek movie takes us back to the beginning for the first time Captain James T. Kirk (Chris Pine), Spock (Zachary Quinto) and the crew of the USS Enterprise boldly went where no man had gone before.

MAY 15

Angels & Demons (Columbia)

Ron Howard’s follow up to the insanely successful The Da Vinci Code film adaptation. Tom Hanks returns as Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon who finds himself in Rome, pitted, once again, against the Illuminati, a secret society, who are planning a terrorist attack on the Vatican. This time around, Audrey Tautou is replaced by a new foreign stunner, Ayelet Zurer, playing an Italian scientist.

The Brothers Bloom (Summit)

A tale of con men … but who’s playing who? Grifter brothers, Adrien Brody and Mark Ruffalo, are looking for one last big score. But their final target, a beautiful, enigmatic wealthy woman (Rachel Weisz), offers more than they bargained for. Don’t they always?

Management (Samuel Goldwyn)

Jennifer Aniston goes back to the indie romantic comedy roots that treated her so well in The Good Girl starring in this quirky comedy about a woman who has a chance encounter with the man who manages the motel she spends one night in, played by underappreciated comedic genius Steve Zahn. When he falls insanely, obsessively in love with her, despite the fact that she already has a boyfriend (Woody Harrelson), he proves just how big love can be.

O’Horten (Sony Pictures Classics)

Directed by internationally acclaimed filmmaker Bent Hamer, the film follows a pathologically habitual train driver on the eve of his retirement as he’s forced to reconsider his approach to life.

MAY 22

Dance Flick (Paramount)

What the Wayan brothers did for scary movies, they’re now doing for dance movies in this send up of Save the Last Dance, Step Up (1 and 2) and You Got Served.

Easy Virtue (Sony Pictures Classics)

Based on Noel Coward’s beloved play, Easy Virtue is the story of a young Englishman, Prince Caspian himself, Ben Barnes, who brings his new raucous American wife, Jessica Biel, home to meet his stuffy, buttoned up family including Kristin Scott Thomas and Colin Firth as his parents.

The Girlfriend Experience

Porn star Sasha Grey makes her big screen debut in Steven Soderbergh’s drama set in the days leading up to the 2008 presidential election and centered on a high-end Manhattan call girl (Grey).

Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian (Twentieth Century Fox)

Museum security guard Larry Daley (Ben Stiller) infiltrates the Smithsonian Institute in order to rescue his friend, Jedediah (Owen Wilson) and Octavius (Steve Coogan), who have been shipped to the museum by mistake. Also with Amelia Earhart (Amy Adams), Teddy Roosevelt (Robin Williams) and General Custer (Bill Hader).

Terminator Salvation (Warner Bros.)

2018, Skynet has destroyed most of humanity in a nuclear holocaust and machines have taken control of the planet. But John Connor is there to lead the human resistance. Hootie hoo! Starring Christian Bale, directed by McG and continuing a 25-year strong franchise, this could be one of the best films of the summer!

MAY 29

Departures (Regent Releasing)

Departures is the 2008 Academy Award winner for Best Foreign Language Film. The film, by Yojiro Takita, is almost a Japanese version of American Beauty about a cellist who losses his symphony and his job, forcing him to reexamine his life and his family.

Drag Me To Hell (Universal)

Remember when Alison Lohman was going to be the next big thing? Yeah, that didn’t happen. But she does appear in this film by Sam Raimi about a loan officer ordered to evict an old woman from her home, which sets off a chain reaction of supernatural horrors.

Summer Hours (IFC)

Starring Juliette Binoche, the film deals with the end of childhood, the loss of a parent and the question of how to honor a parent’s final wishes after they’ve passed on.


Away We Go (Focus Features)

Maya Rudolph and John Krasinski star as a rootless couple expecting their first child that travels around the U.S. looking to find the perfect place to raise their family. Directed by Sam Mendes and littered with great supporting players like Allison Janney and Maggie Gyllenhaal, even the trailer is grating and obnoxious. Krasinski seems to be the good-movie kiss of death.

Downloading Nancy (Strand Releasing)

Starring Maria Bello and Jason Patric, the film follows an unhappy housewife who hires a hit man from the Internet to kill her, but the two fall in love.

The Hangover (Warner Bros.)

Vegas, hangovers, Mike Tyson and the guy who directed Old School – need we say more? Three friends lose the groom during a wild bachelor party in Vegas. Warner Bros. is so sure they have a massive hit on their hands, they’re already working on the sequel. Does that mean they don’t find their friend?

Land of the Lost (Universal)

Based on the 1974 children’s sci-fi series, the film stars Will Ferrell as a disgraced paleontologist sucked into a space-time vortex alongside his research assistant (Anna Friel) and a redneck survivalist (Danny McBride).

My Life in Ruins (Fox Searchlight)

More like Nia Vardalos’ career in ruins. In a sad attempt to recreate her Big Fat Greek legacy, Vardalos plays a travel guide searching for romance, again, with a very unlikely match, again, as she whisks a group of tourists around Greece. Of course. We wonder if she recycled the Windex jokes too.


Food, Inc. (Magnolia)

An unflattering look inside America’s corporate controlled food industry and the trickle-down effect it has on the country’s farmers and America’s health.

Imagine That (Paramount)

Imagine that, another crappy looking movie starring Eddie Murphy. This one is about a financial executive (Murphy) whose career is hitting the skids, until he’s invited into his daughter’s imaginary world, where he discovers the solutions to all his problems.

Moon (Sony Pictures Classics)

Astronaut Sam Bell (Sam Rockwell) has an intensely personal encounter after a three-year stay on the moon where he, working alongside his computer, GERTY (voiced by Kevin Spacey), sends back to Earth parcels of a resource that has helped diminish our planet’s power problems.

Sex Positive (Regent Releasing/here!)

Sex Positive explores the life of Richard Berkowitz, a revolutionary gay S&M-hustler-turned-AIDS activist in the 1980s, whose contribution to the invention of safe sex has never been aptly credited.

The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3 (Columbia)

Denzel Washington plays an ordinary dispatcher pitted against a criminal mastermind (John Travolta) in Tony Scott’s film about armed men, led by Travolta, who hijack a New York City subway train, holding the passengers hostage in return for a ransom. Based on the book and 1974 movie of the same name.


$9.99 (Regent Releasing)

$9.99 is a stop-motion animated feature about people living in an apartment complex in Sydney, Australia, all searching for the meaning of life.

Irene in Time (Rainbow Releasing)

Henry Jaglom lends his signature improvised, voyeuristic style to this exploration of the complex relationships between fathers and daughters, and how they inform women’s relationships with other men later in life.

Whatever Works (Sony Pictures Classics)

No one really knows that a Woody Allen film is about until it’s released … and sometimes, even then, there are still questions. Whatever Works is rumored to be about an older man, Larry David filling in for Allen, who no longer stars as himself, dating a young Southern belle (Evan Rachel Wood stepping into the role that Scarlett Johansson has filled so often lately in Allen’s films). The pair fall in love, but can their worlds come together? Seriously, how about the fact that those two dating is just grody?

Year One (Columbia)

Jack Black and Michael Cera star as two cavemen who are banished from their primitive village and set off on an epic journey through the ancient world.


Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen (DreamWorks/Paramount)

The Decepticons are back and this time, they’re after Sam Witwicky (Shia LaBeouf). But they’ll have to get through Optimus Prime and the Autobots first. Michael Bay returns to direct, and Megan Fox is back in glorious eye candy mode.


Cheri (Miramax)

Stephen Frears, who got one of the best performances of her career out of Michelle Pfeiffer in Dangerous Liaisons, directs Pfeiffer again in another romantic drama, this one set in 1920s Paris, where Pfeiffer plays a cougar educating a young man in the ways of love. Scandalous.

The Hurt Locker (Summit)

Kathryn Bigelow, who directed Point Break, one of the most underrated, fantastic action movies ever, and was the first person to ever do a handheld foot chase scene, turns her eye to the Iraq War, a subject filmgoers have rejected many times before (Stop-Loss, Rendition, In the Valley of Elah). The film is a thriller about a bomb-disposal team near the end of their rotation deadline that has to deal with a volatile new sergeant (Jeremy Renner).

My Sister’s Keeper
(New Line)

Nick Cassavetes doing what he does best; making people cry. The film, starring Cameron Diaz and Abigail Breslin, is based on the novel about a young girl who sues her parents for the right to make her own decisions about how her body is used when a kidney transplant is needed to potentially save her older sister.


Public Enemies (Universal)

Michael Mann updates the good old Untouchables-style ganger film starring Johnny Depp, Christian Bale, Billy Crudup, Giovanni Ribisi and Channing Tatum. The film follows FBI agent Melvin Purvis (Bale) as he doggedly follows gangster John Dillinger (Depp) and others in an attempt to curb a rampant Chicago crime spree during the 1930s.


Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs (Twentieth Century Fox)

In the third installment in the Ice Age series, Manny (Ray Romano), Sid (John Leguizamo), Diego (Denis Leary), Ellie (Queen Latifah), Eddie (Josh Peck), Crash (Seann William Scott) and Scrat encounter a dinosaur, reptile and amphibian population, which survived extinction in its tropical paradise, which existed below the thick layers ... until now.


Brüno (Universal)

Sacha Baron Cohen’s follow-up to Borat. If the trailer is any indication, Brüno, a flamboyant Austrian fashion reporter who travels the world reporting on the latest style trends, is going to be even more outrageously hilarious.

I Love You, Beth Cooper (Fox Atomic)

The last night of high school takes an unexpected turn after geeky grad Denis Cooverman declares his love for hottie cheerleader Beth Cooper (Hayden Panettiere playing a cheerleader as usual) in his valedictorian speech. Directed by Chris Columbus and backed by the studio that brought you Turistas, we wouldn’t put our money on this being very good.

Soul Power (Sony Pictures Classics)

Remember “The Rumble in the Jungle,” the legendary fight between Muhammad Ali and George Foreman in Zaire? There was a three-day music festival held that coincided with the fight and featured acts like B.B. King, James Brown and Celia Cruz. Directed by When We Were Kings editor Jeffrey Levy-Hinte, Soul Power documents that 1974 concert.


(500) Days of Summer
(Fox Searchlight)

Marc Webb’s directorial debut was one of the best films at the Sundance Film Festival. Starring Zooey Deschanel and Joseph Gordon-Levitt, this is not a love story, it’s a story about love … and that’s what makes it brilliant.

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (Warner Bros.)

You know him, you love him, he’s Harry Potter, this time in his sixth year at Hogwarts. The kids are getting older, the movies are getting darker and this one brings the death of a beloved character.

Humpday (Magnolia)

This Sundance darling is about two straight best guy friends who decide to make a porn film and submit it to a film festival.


The Answer Man (Magnolia)

Jeff Daniels stars as the reclusive author of a spirituality book titled Me and God, which is hugely successful 20 years after it was first published. When a single mother (Lauren Graham) and a young man just getting out of rehab (Lou Taylor Pucci) come to him looking for answers to the meaning of life, he has to admit, he has no clue. The film also stars Kat Dennings (Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist) and Olivia Thirlby (Juno), who are practically interchangeable in the indie film scene.

In The Loop (IFC)

A political farce about what happens when the U.S. president and UK prime minister team up to create a war. Not “The” war, just a war. Starring My Girl’s Anna Chlumsky, James Gandolfini, Tom Hollander and Peter Capaldi.

Orphan (Warner Bros.)

After their unborn baby dies, a couple, played by Vera Farmiga and Peter Sarsgaard, decide to adopt a child. And, you guessed it, the little girl they bring home might be the devil. Another creepy-kid movie starring Vera Farmiga that will probably fade into obscurity just like Joshua did.

The Ugly Truth (Columbia)

A loud-mouthed, womanizing, machismo morning TV show correspondent (Gerald Butler) makes a bet with his love-challenged newly assigned producer (Katherine Heigl): If his tips on how to land and keep a guy don’t work, he’ll quit the business. Guess which man she lands? Duh, that’s why it’s a romantic comedy.


Adam (Fox Searchlight)

When Beth (Rose Byrne) moves into her new apartment, she meets and falls for her handsome neighbor, Adam (Hugh Dancy). But this isn’t another boy-meets-girl by-the-numbers romance. Adam has Asperger’s syndrome, making him basically a high-functioning autistic.


The Cove (Roadside Attractions)

This documentary had to be shot as a covert mission using state-of-the-art equipment because the Japanese government desperately wanted the story that director Louie Psihoyos exposes to remain uncovered. A group of activists, led by renowned dolphin trainer Richard O’Barry, infiltrated a cove near Taiji, Japan, to expose shocking animal abuse and a serious threat to human existence and health.

Funny People (Universal)

Judd Apatow’s third film is about a beloved comedian, played by Adam Sandler, who decides to take an up and comer (Seth Rogen) under his wing when he learns he has a terminal, inoperable health condition.

Lorna’s Silence (Sony Pictures Classics)

Written and directed by Cannes Film Festival darlings, brothers Jean-Pierre Dardenne and Luc Dardenne, the film follows Lorna, an illegal immigrant from Albania, who agrees to an arranged marriage scheme with Claudy, a drug addict, to acquire Belgian citizenship.

They Came From Upstairs
(Twentieth Century Fox)

A group of teenagers, including High School Musical’s Ashley Tisdale and Step Up 2’s Robert Hoffman, fight to protect their Maine vacation home from the aliens who have taken over the attic.

AUG. 7

G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra (Paramount)

Go Joe! One of the best toys of the ’80s makes the leap to the big screen. All I know is, this movie had better be awesome. And knowing is half the battle.

Julie & Julia (Columbia)

Based on Julie Powell’s memoir about deciding to spend her 30th year tackling all 524 recipes in Julia Child’s Mastering the Art of French Cooking, as well as Child’s posthumously released autobiography, the film interweaves the story of Julie (Amy Adams) and Julia (Meryl Streep who will, no doubt, get another Oscar nom for this role.)

Paper Heart

Super hipster artist Charlyne Yi created a mockumentary about what love means to different people set around the narrative of what happens as she’s courted by her real-life boyfriend, Michael Cera.

AUG. 14

Bandslam (Summit)

A group of unlikely high school friends come together to form a rock group and compete in their school’s upcoming Battle of the Bands. Starring High School Musical’s Vanessa Hudgens and tween pop star Alyson Michalka of Aly & AJ.

The Goods: Live Hard, Sell Hard (Paramount Vantage)

Legendary used-car salesman Don Ready (Jeremy Piven) is hired by a flailing auto dealership to turn their Fourth of July sale into a blowout extravaganza. It’s Ari Gold gone low rent.

It Might Get Loud (Sony Pictures Classics)

It Might Get Loud, directed by Academy Award winner Davis Guggenheim (An Inconvenient Truth), is a documentary about the electric guitar as seen by rock icons Jimmy Page, the Edge and Jack White.

Spread (Anchor Bay)

Set in a grotesque version of Los Angeles, where everyone’s either a gigolo or a gold digger, Ashton Kutcher stars as Nicki, a homeless, jobless drifter who spends his life finding women to pleasure in return for food and shelter. This was one of the weaker films at Sundance, which only got distribution because of Kutcher.

Taking Woodstock
(Focus Features)

Ang Lee’s film, which will debut at the Cannes Film Festival, is about what happens when a young man, struggling to keep his parents’ motel afloat, inadvertently sets in motion the historical, generation-defining event known as Woodstock.

The Time Traveler’s Wife (New Line)

Based on the best-selling novel of the same name, the film stars Eric Bana as a Chicago librarian who is born with a gene that causes him to involuntarily time travel. Obviously, that tends to create issues in his life, especially with his wife, played by Rachel McAdams.

AUG. 21

Inglourious Basterds (The Weinstein Company)

An American-led killing squad known as “The Basterds” was sent on a mission to brutalize and terrorize the Nazis in German-occupied France during World War II. It’s Quentin Tarantino’s version of Saving Private Ryan.

Post Grad (Fox Searchlight)

When Ryden Malby (Alexis Bledel) can’t find a good job after graduating from college, she moves back in with her oddball family to reconsider her options.

AUG. 28

The Boat That Rocked

In the 1960s the best music on the radio was coming from an illegal radio station run by a band of rogue DJs on a ship in the middle of Britain’s North Sea, a neutral territory that allowed them to play whatever they wanted without censorship by the government. This is where “Pirate Radio” began. Starring Philip Seymour Hoffman, Rhys Ifans, Bill Nighy and Kenneth Branagh, written and directed by Richard Curtis (Love Actually, Four Weddings and a Funeral).

Final Destination: Death Trip 3D (New Line)

You know how the Final Destination movies work by now; someone’s supposed to die (This time it’s Nick Zano.), they evade it and death comes hunting after them for the rest of the film leaving a sea of carnage in its wake. But, now it’s in 3D.

H2 (Dimension)

They’re calling it “Halloween 2,” but this is actually the 10th film in the Halloween series. Rob Zombie, who directed the 2007 remake, returns for a second trip to Haddonfield, Ill.