Friday, April 25, 2008

The Sickness' Cinema Guide to Summer '08 Part Two

And we're back with June, separating the studs from the duds. You can check out the month of May right here.

You Don't Mess with the Zohan
(June 6)
Premise: Mossad agent Adam Sandler (okaaaay) ups and moves to New York City to become a hairstylist. Hillairity, needless to say, ensues.
The Sickness ingredient: Produced by Judd Apatow (I know). Nice for little Jewish kids to have an Israeli hero who doesn't cry during sex (thank you Eric Bana).
What worries me: Apatow and broad comedy don't always go together. Hopefully this collaboration will bring out the best of the two men, they do go way back.

Kung-Fu Panda (June 6)
Premise: Shark Tale but with Kung-Fu Pandas.
The Sickness Ingredient: Interesting setting, I like the animation style.
What worries me: Where to even begin? The annoying AMC promo adds that some idiot in the theater always laughs at? The use of "Kung-Fu Fighting" over a martial arts sequence for the billionth time? The casting of celebrities over actors? The fact that Dreamworks has yet to turn out a single half-decent computer animated feature? Take your pick.

Mongol (June 6)
Premise: The epic story of Genghis Kahn (in Russian).
The Sickness Ingredient: Big, fancy epic scope. Good advanced buzz and an Oscar nominee for best foreign feature.
What worries me: Sweeping epic fatigue and the fact that the nominees for foreign film that have already been released were not great.

The Incredible Hulk (June 13)
Premise: He's a big, green, shirtless monster and you wouldn't like him when he's angry. By why are we talking about Dick Cheney?
The Sickness ingredient: A newly revamped cast (Ed Norton, Tom Roth, Liv Tyler) and a director who loves action, Louis Letterier (Unleashed, Transporter 2) should amend some of the problems with the ambitious but ultimately frustrating first Hulk movie...
What worries me: Except for the fact that there has been a very public snit between Norton and the studio, Norton wants more introspection, the studio wants more action. Not good. Also the fact that the final battle between the Hulk and the Abomination in the trailer looks pretty boring.

The Happening (June 13)
Premise: Something is... happening (ooooo) that's causing people to mysteriously die (or kill themselves). It's all directed by M. Night Shyamalan (what a twist!).
The Sickness ingredient: When M. Night pulls it off (Sixth Sense, Unbreakable) or mostly pulls it off (Signs) the results are pretty damn impressive. The cast is really likable too (Wahlberg and Deschanel).
What worries me: Shyamalan has been trending downwards for a long time now, though I guess that's what happens when your head is shoved firmly up your own butt. Stick to directing and stop writing, please.
SC Pick: Get Smart (June 20)
Premise: Agent Maxwell Smart is introduced to a new generation.
The Sickness ingredient: Good action comedy is damn near impossible to pull off but it looks like Peter Anger Management Segal has pulled it off here. Also the cast virtually guarantees a good time (Carrell, Hathaway, Koechner, Arkin, the Rock).
What worries me: Maybe the trailer has given away all the best bits. Carrell had a rough time with an fx heavy movie last summer (though THAT was doomed from the start).

The Guru (June 20)
Premise: Mike Myers tries to be Peter Sellers, fails.
The Sickness ingredient: Well, at least it' s a new character, kind of.
What worries me: Hey remember all those "klassic komedy katchphrases" from the Austin Powers movies? Yeah, expect that ALL over again. Go rent The Party instead.

Kit Kittridge: American Girl
(June 20)
Premise: Young girl with indomitable spirit has fun in the Great Depression. Comically torments Wallace Shawn.
The Sickness ingredient: Wallace Shaw, Stanley Tucci, Joan Cusack, Jane Krakowski-that's a pretty solid supporting line-up.
What worries me: Will young girls respond to a period comedy where the girl's concerns aren't entirely superficial? God I hope so.
SC Top Pick: Wall-E (June 27)
Premise: Robot discovers inner-life, love and the desire to be more then just a cleaning unit.
The Sickness ingredient: PIXAR, the only name you can trust absolutely in film. Plus for all intents and purposes this is a silent film. Also a good friend of mine (I wouldn't dare expose her identity) saw the complete film and said that it was "amazing" and "very different from anything they've ever done before."
What worries me: Do we, as a society, deserve a movie this good?

Wanted (June 27)
Premise: Comic scribe Mark Millar sells out so that you can watch yet another movie where pretty people shoot each other.
The Sickness ingredient: At least it looks fairly ridiculous.
What worries me: Why call it Wanted if it looks not one iota like the comic?


Kenneth said...

but didn't judd apatow once write "if any of us get laid tonight its because of eric bana in munich"?

Etan said...

one word: shrek.

two words: you suck.

El Gigante said...

Etan, how does it feel to be staggeringly wrong? Does it make you worry about important life choices where you are also in grave danger of being wrong?