Summer Movie Preview 2018

Summer movie season started a week early this year, with “Avengers: Infinity War” hitting theaters the last week of April rather than the first week of May, which is the traditional start of the season.

Why a week earlier? Money, of course. Disney had planned a May 4 release, and waited until other high-profile movies stayed two weeks away from that date before moving to April 27. Those sly foxes at the Mouse House got themselves an extra week of moviegoer’s prime attention!

Of course, it’s not the only high-profile release this summer. What follows is my annual lighthearted look at what to expect on the big screen through July, including The Rock leaping tall buildings in a single bound, a pope documentary, and more “Mission: Impossible.” To borrow from one of this summer’s titles, “Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again”!

May 4


The gender roles are reversed from the 1987 Goldie Hawn/Kurt Russell original, but the premise of shamelessly taking advantage of another person’s memory loss remains the same. And we’re supposed to laugh about it. These are not good people.


Charlize Theron did well in the Diablo Cody scripted, Jason Reitman directed “Young Adult” (2011), and the team returns here with the story of a struggling mother (Theron) and her new nanny (Mackenzie Davis). Relatedly, this is the first time “struggling mother” and “new nanny” have been written in the same sentence.

May 11

“Life of the Party”

A middle-aged mother (Melissa McCarthy) returns to college to finish her degree. Is McCarthy ever not the life of the party?

May 18

“Deadpool 2”

The trailers don’t look great, but after “Avengers: Infinity War” it will be Josh Brolin’s second big-bad-comic book villain role in the span of a few weeks. Deadpool will have something witty to say about this, I’m sure.

“Book Club”

Four lifelong friends (Diane Keaton, Jane Fonda, Candice Bergen, Mary Steenburgen) read “50 Shades of Grey” and…good luck to the unsuspecting men having to fend off their prurient desires. If they want to.

“Pope Francis: A Man of His Word”

If the Academy is smart, it will nominate this for Best Documentary at the Oscars, and invite the pope to the ceremony. It might bring back some of the religious/conservative viewers Hollywood has alienated the last few years.

May 25

“Solo: A Star Wars Story”

“Star Wars” oversaturation continues, this time with a young Han Solo (Alden Ehrenreich) meeting Chewbacca and Lando for the first time. Don’t trust Lando, Han!


June 1

“Action Point”

Johnny Knoxville, of “Jackass” fame, runs an old school amusement park. Because nothing says “responsible adult” like endangering the lives of hundreds of kids.

June 8

“Ocean’s 8”

Sandra Bullock plays Danny Ocean’s (George Clooney) sister in this all-female take on the heist films, this time centered on the Met Gala in New York City. Cate Blanchett, Anne Hathaway, Mindy Kaling, Rihanna and more also star.

“Won’t You Be My Neighbor?”

A documentary about the life of the sweater-wearing nice guy, Fred Rogers. I always thought it’d be funny if, when Mr. Rogers asked someone the titular question, they aggressively said “no!” and slammed the door in his face.


You can choose your friends, but not your family. When the matriarch dies, her descendants learn of their sinister, unwelcome fate. This looks creepy, spooky, and has great buzz.

June 15

“Incredibles 2”

Leave it to Pixar to put all the pressure on itself by already calling its movie “incredible.” They seem to have the whole “under promise, over deliver” thing backward. Let’s hope this sequel to the 2004 hit, which picks up where the original left off, lives up to its name.


Based on the true story of the greatest game of tag ever played, one that was started by a group of kids and continued into adulthood. Ladies, if you had any hope that your boyfriend/husband would mature, let this be the final piece of evidence you need to realize it will never happen.

June 22

“Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom”

The dinosaurs finally meet their match, and this time it doesn’t come in the form of a little girl doing gymnastics. (That’s a “Jurassic Park 2” reference, for those who’ve understandably blocked that movie from memory:


June 29

“Sicario: Day of the Soldado”

If you don’t speak Spanish, “soldado” means “soldier.” Josh Brolin and Benicio Del Toro, stars of “Sicario” (2015), return, drug wars will be fought, and if it’s any good we’ll know what day of the week the “day of the soldier” is by film’s end.

July 6

“Ant-Man and the Wasp”

Continuing Marvel Studios domination of the universe, now Ant-Man (Paul Rudd) has a partner (Evangeline Lilly’s Wasp), and together they uncover a dark secret from the past. Nothing, however, is more daunting than knowing Michelle Pfeiffer is the Wasp’s mother.

“The First Purge”

This prequel looks at the first time America had no laws for 12 hours and all crime was legal. You know, like living in Detroit. and


You’ll get “So Emotional” and “Wanna Dance With Somebody” during this documentary on Whitney Houston. And if you’re wondering “How Will I Know?” about her “Greatest Love Of All,” that’s all the more reason to watch!

July 13


Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson must stop a towering inferno inside a 240-story skyscraper in this 100 percent realistic new release.

“Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation”

Dracula needs a vacation too, right? Little does he know the captain of his luxury cruise ship, also his love interest, is Ericka Van Helsing! It’s animated, so at least you only have to listen to Adam Sandler’s dumb Dracula voice rather than having to watch him.

July 20

“Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again”

Sequel to the 2008 hit, and yet another reminder of my long-standing contention that every ABBA song sounds the same. Except “The Winner Takes It All” – that’s just sad.


“The Equalizer 2”

Apparently Denzel Washington didn’t equalize enough in the 2014 original, so he needs to kill bad guys again to make things…more equal?

July 27

“Mission: Impossible – Fallout”

In the sixth franchise installment, Tom Cruise once again literally risks his life for our entertainment, this time by piloting a helicopter. Thank you, Tom, for having no sanity.

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