July 2011 Movie Guide

july 2011 summer movies

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LARRY CROWNE – July 1

Our take: Julia Roberts and Tom Hanks in a sweet romantic comedy, how can we resist?

Synopsis: Oscar winners Tom Hanks and Julia Roberts reunite for a dramatic comedy about how the hard knocks from today’s recession inspire one everyday guy to undergo a personal reinvention: Larry Crowne.

Until he was downsized, affable, amiable Larry Crowne (Hanks) was a superstar team leader at the big-box company where he’s worked since his time in the Navy. Underwater on his mortgage and unclear on what to do with his suddenly free days, Larry heads to his local college to start over. There he becomes part of a colorful community of outcasts, also-rans and the overlooked all trying to find a better future for themselves.often moving around town in a herd of scooters. In his public-speaking class, Larry develops an unexpected crush on his teacher Mercedes Tainot (Roberts), who has lost as much passion for teaching as she has for her husband.

The simple guy who has every reason to think his life has stalled will come to learn an unexpected lesson: when you think everything worth having has passed you by, you just might discover your reason to live.

 
 
MONTE CARLO – July 1

Monte Carlo movie photo 01

Our take: A cute, teen romantic comedy. But if we’re being honest, we can wait for the DVD to come out for this one.

Synopsis: A young woman, her uptight step sister and her best friend use their savings for a long anticipated dream trip to Paris, which turns out to be a big disappointment. When they decide to take a break from their lousy tour and duck into the lobby of a luxury hotel, one of them is mistaken for a spoiled British heiress. Before they get the chance to reveal their true identities they are wrapped up in misadventures during a vacation to Monte Carlo instead.

 
 
HORRIBLE BOSSES – July 8

Our take: We guess this could be a fun movie if only the conflict could not be so easily solved: how about quitting the job? And yes, quitting is always an option over murder… we’re just saying.

Synopsis: For Nick (Jason Bateman), Kurt (Jason Sudeikis) and Dale (Charlie Day), the only thing that would make the daily grind more tolerable would be to grind their intolerable bosses (Kevin Spacey, Colin Farrell, Jennifer Aniston) into dust. Quitting is not an option, so, with the benefit of a few-too-many drinks and some dubious advice from a hustling ex-con (Jamie Foxx), the three friends devise a convoluted and seemingly foolproof plan to rid themselves of their respective employers…permanently. There’s only one problem: even the best laid plans are only as foolproof as the brains behind them.

 
 
ZOOKEEPER – July 8

Zookeeper

Our take: This one’s for the kids. Not really our cup of tea though.

Synopsis: In Zookeeper, the animals at the Franklin Park Zoo love their kindhearted caretaker, Griffin Keyes (Kevin James). Finding himself more comfortable with a lion than a lady, Griffin decides the only way to get a girl in his life is to leave the zoo and find a more glamorous job. The animals, in a panic, decide to break their time-honored code of silence and reveal their biggest secret: they can talk! To keep Griffin from leaving, they decide to teach him the rules of courtship – animal style.

 
 

Our take: After seven movies, we think this one speaks for itself.

Synopsis: “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2,” is the final adventure in the Harry Potter film series. The much-anticipated motion picture event is the second of two full-length parts.

In the epic finale, the battle between the good and evil forces of the wizarding world escalates into an all-out war. The stakes have never been higher and no one is safe. But it is Harry Potter who may be called upon to make the ultimate sacrifice as he draws closer to the climactic showdown with Lord Voldemort.

It all ends here.

 
 
WINNIE THE POOH – July 15

Our take: He’s round, he’s soft, he’s cute, he’s Winnie the Pooh. A great new 2D animation for kids and grown-ups who love this sweet, honey-loving bear.

Synopsis: Walt Disney Animation Studios returns to the Hundred Acre Wood with “Winnie the Pooh,” the first big-screen Pooh adventure from Disney animation in more than 35 years. With the charm, wit and whimsy of the original featurettes, this all-new movie reunites audiences with the philosophical “bear of very little brain” and friends Tigger, Rabbit, Piglet, Kanga, Roo—and last, but certainly not least, Eeyore, who has lost his tail. “Well a tail is either there or it isn’t there,” said Pooh. “And yours isn’t… there.” Owl sends the whole gang on a wild quest to save Christopher Robin from an imaginary culprit. It turns out to be a very busy day for a bear who simply set out to find some hunny. Inspired by five stories from A.A. Milne’s books in Disney’s classic, hand-drawn art style.

 
 

captain america first avenger

Our take: Another comic book-based blockbuster for the summer. If you’ve been enjoying those, why not give Captain America a try as well.

Synopsis: Captain America: The First Avenger will focus on the early days of the Marvel Universe when Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) volunteers to participate in an experimental program that turns him into the Super Soldier known as Captain America. As Captain America, Rogers joins forces with Bucky Barnes (Sebastian Stan) and Peggy Carter (Hayley Atwell) to wage war on the evil HYDRA organization, led by the villainous Red Skull (Hugo Weaving.)

 
 

FRIENDS WITH BENEFITS movie

Our take: If this one’s anywhere as good as Ashton Kutcher and Natalie Portman’s No Strings Attached, we’re in.

Synopsis: A young female headhunter (Mila Kunis) in New York convinces a potential recruit (Justin Timberlake) to accept a job in the Big Apple. Despite an attraction to each other, both realize they’re everything they’ve been running from in a relationship and decide to see what happens if they leave emotion out of it and keep it strictly physical.

 
 
ANOTHER EARTH – July 22 (Limited)

Another Earth movie | William Mapother

Our take: Beautiful film that mixes a human drama with sci-fi aspects. Since we’ve seen this one, we highly recommend it.

Synopsis: In ANOTHER EARTH, Rhoda Williams (Brit Marling), a bright young woman accepted into MIT’s astrophysics program, aspires to explore the cosmos. A brilliant composer, John Burroughs (William Mapother), has just reached the pinnacle of his profession and is about to have a second child. On the eve of the discovery of a duplicate Earth, tragedy strikes and the lives of these strangers become irrevocably intertwined.

 
 
ATTACK THE BLOCK – July 29 (Limited)

Attack The Block

Our take: Alien invasion in the London ghetto, do we really need to say more? We’ve seen Attack the Block and it’s as good as it sounds… no actually it’s better.

Synopsis: From the producers of Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz, ATTACK THE BLOCK follows a gang of tough inner-city kids who try to defend their turf against an invasion of savage alien creatures, turning a South London apartment complex into an extraterrestrial warzone.

 
 
COWBOYS AND ALIENS – July 29

Our take: Cowboys + Aliens + Jon Favreau… what is there to talk about?!

(In case you didn’t know: Jon Favreau directed two little films you might know: Iron Man and Iron Man 2)

Synopsis: 1873. Arizona Territory. A stranger (Craig) with no memory of his past stumbles into the hard desert town of Absolution. The only hint to his history is a mysterious shackle that encircles one wrist. What he discovers is that the people of Absolution don’t welcome strangers, and nobody makes a move on its streets unless ordered to do so by the iron–fisted Colonel Dolarhyde (Ford). It’s a town that lives in fear.

But Absolution is about to experience fear it can scarcely comprehend as the desolate city is attacked by marauders from the sky. Screaming down with breathtaking velocity and blinding lights to abduct the helpless one by one, these monsters challenge everything the residents have ever known.

Now, the stranger they rejected is their only hope for salvation. As this gunslinger slowly starts to remember who he is and where he’s been, he realizes he holds a secret that could give the town a fighting chance against the alien force. With the help of the elusive traveler Ella (Olivia Wilde), he pulls together a posse comprised of former opponents–townsfolk, Dolarhyde and his boys, outlaws and Apache warriors–all in danger of annihilation. United against a common enemy, they will prepare for an epic showdown for survival.

 
 

Crazy Stupid Love | Steve Carell and Ryan Gosling

Our take: A new romantic comedy starring Steve Carell and a shirtless Ryan Gosling… ladies it’s time to schedule a girls night out.

Synopsis: At fortysomething, straight-laced Cal Weaver (Steve Carell) is living the dream—good job, nice house, great kids and marriage to his high school sweetheart. But when Cal learns that his wife, Emily (Julianne Moore), has cheated on him and wants a divorce, his “perfect” life quickly unravels. Worse, in today’s single world, Cal, who hasn’t dated in decades, stands out as the epitome of un-smooth. Now spending his free evenings sulking alone at a local bar, the hapless Cal is taken on as wingman and protégé to handsome, thirtysomething player Jacob Palmer (Ryan Gosling). In an effort to help Cal get over his wife and start living his life, Jacob opens Cal’s eyes to the many options before him: flirty women, manly drinks and a sense of style that can’t be found at Supercuts or The Gap. Cal and Emily aren’t the only ones looking for love in what might be all the wrong places: Cal’s 13-year-old son, Robbie, is crazy about his 17-year-old babysitter, Jessica, who harbors a crush on Cal. And despite Cal’s makeover and his many new conquests, the one thing that can’t be made over is his heart, which seems to keep leading him back to where he began.

 
 
THE DEVIL’S DOUBLE – July 29 (Limited)

Our take: A fantastic and frightening film about Saddam Hussein’s son, Uday Hussein, and his double, Latif Yahia. Both characters are portrayed by Dominic Cooper, but his performance is so superb that you’ll have to remind yourself throughout that he’s the same actor. Another highly recommended film we have already seen.

Synopsis: Based on a gripping, unbelievable true story of money, power and opulent decadence, Lionsgate’s THE DEVIL’S DOUBLE takes a white-knuckle ride deep into the lawless playground of excess and violence known as Bagdad, 1987. Summoned from the frontline to Saddam Hussein’s palace, Iraqi army lieutenant Latif Yahia (Dominic Cooper) is thrust into the highest echelons of the “royal family” when he’s ordered to become the ‘fiday’ – or body double – to Saddam’s son, the notorious “Black Prince” Uday Hussein (also Dominic Cooper), a reckless, sadistic party-boy with a rabid hunger for sex and brutality. With his and his family’s lives at stake, Latif must surrender his former self forever as he learns to walk, talk and act like Uday. But nothing could have prepared him for the horror of the Black Prince’s psychotic, drug-addled life of fast cars, easy women and impulsive violence. With one wrong move costing him his life, Latif forges an intimate bond with Sarrab (Ludivine Sangier), Uday’s seductive mistress who’s haunted by her own secrets. But as war looms with Kuwait and Uday’s depraved gangster regime threatens to destroy them all, Latif realizes that escape from the devil’s den will only come at the highest possible cost.

 
 
THE FUTURE – July 29 (Limited)

the future movie

Our take: If you enjoyed Miranda July’s previous film, Me and You and Everyone We Know, then you might enjoy The Future. For those not familiar with her work, let’s just say it’s not a conventional storytelling but it does capture your attention with a blend of humor, quirkiness and fantasy. Worth watching!

Synopsis: The Future tells the story of a thirty-something couple who, on deciding to adopt a stray cat, change their perspective on life, literally altering the course of time and testing their faith in each other and themselves.

Sophie and Jason are strange the way all couples are strange when they’re alone. They live in a small LA apartment, have jobs they hate, and in one month they’ll adopt a stray cat named Paw Paw. Like a newborn baby, he’ll need around-the-clock care — he may die in six months, or it may take five years. Despite their good intentions, Sophie and Jason are terrified of their looming loss of freedom. So with just one month left, they quit their jobs, and the Internet, to pursue their dreams — Sophie wants to create a dance, Jason wants simply to be guided by fate. But as the month slips away, Sophie becomes increasingly, humiliatingly paralyzed. In a moment of desperation, she calls a stranger, Marshall — a square, fifty-year-old man who lives in the Valley. In his suburban world she doesn’t have to be herself; as long as she stays there, she’ll never have to try (and fail) again. Living in two terrifyingly vacant and different realities, Sophie and Jason must reunite with time, space and their own souls in order to come home.

 
 
THE GUARD – July 29 (Limited)

Our take: A humorous take on a small-town cop (Brendan Gleeson) in Ireland and his interaction with the FBI agent (Don Cheadle) that comes to his town to stop an international drug-smuggling ring. Absolutely worth seeing if only for Brendan Gleeson and Don Cheadle’s performances.

Synopsis: A small-town cop in Ireland has a confrontational personality, a subversive sense of humor, a fondness for prostitutes and absolutely no interest whatsoever in the international drug-smuggling ring that has brought a straight-laced FBI agent to his door. However, a surreal chain of events pulls him into the action.

 
 
LIFE IN A DAY – July 29

life in a day movie

Our take: Have you ever wondered what people around the world were doing on July 24, 2010? Well, now you can find out.

Synopsis: Produced by Ridley Scott and directed by Kevin Macdonald, LIFE IN A DAY is a user-generated feature-length documentary, shot on a single day – July 24, 2010 – that enlisted the global community to capture a moment of their lives on camera.

The world responded by submitting more than 80,000 videos, representing over 4,500 hours of deeply personal, powerful films from contributors from Australia to Zambia, from the heart of bustling major cities to the furthest and most remote reaches of the earth.

LIFE IN A DAY brings together the most compelling YouTube footage into a 90-minute film, crafted by Macdonald, Executive Producer Ridley Scott, Producer Liza Marshall and their team, to offer a unique experience that shows, in beautiful, humourous and joyful honesty, what it’s like to be alive on earth today.

 
 
THE SMURFS – July 29

the smurfs

Our take: If you like the Smurfs and Neil Patrick Harris, you might enjoy this movie. If you don’t, maybe it’s ok to skip it.

Synopsis: When the evil wizard Gargamel chases the tiny blue Smurfs out of their village, they tumble from their magical world and into ours – in fact, smack dab in the middle of Central Park. Just three apples high and stuck in the Big Apple, the Smurfs must find a way to get back to their village before Gargamel tracks them down.

 
 

Also released this month…

Terri – July 1 (Limited)
The Perfect Host – July 1 (Limited)
The Ledge – July 8 (Limited)
Project Nim – July 8 (Limited)
The Ward – July 8 (Limited)
Flypaper – July 15 (Limited)
Lucky – July 15 (Limited)
Salvation Boulevard – July 15 (Limited)
Snow Flower and the Secret Fan – July 15 (Limited)
Tabloid – July 15 (Limited)
A Little Help – July 22 (Limited)
Sarah’s Key – July 22 (Limited)
Ironclad – July 26 (Limited)