Summer Movie Recap: The Best and the Worst of the Season

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Published September 4, 2019
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Tom Holland (left) and Zendaya (right) star as Peter Park/Spider-Man and MJ in "Spider-Man: Far From Home." Photo courtesy of Sony Pictures Entertainment

With fall just around the corner, the summer 2019 movie season is reaching its finale.

From the beginning of May to the end of August, there has been a wide variety of summer films on the big screen. Ranging from action movies, comedies, indie films, dramas and more, the summer movie season gave moviegoers an array of options to choose from.

Franchise

Releasing after the colossal and emotional “Avengers: Endgame,” which is now the highest grossing film of all time, “Spider-Man: Far From Home,” “Pokemon: Detective Pikachu” and “John Wick – Parabellum” were all excellent additions to their franchises, with all three films expected to have sequels.

“Godzilla: King of Monsters” and “Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs and Shaw” were two sequels that were both not entirely loved by fans and critics, but were two action-packed movies that have “summer blockbuster” written all over them.

Although movie franchises have done fairly well this summer, there were definitely a few misses. “Dark Phoenix” is one of them. This film not only did poorly in the box office, being the lowest grossing film of the X-Men movie franchise, but it was also disliked by critics and fans alike.

Disney Movies

Disney released a total of three films this summer — “The Lion King,” “Aladdin” and “Toy Story 4” — which collectively grossed more than $1 billion worldwide.

Although these films were watched by many, a number of audience members and critics disapprove of Disney’s method of recreating their animated films. A typical complaint is that these live-action remakes lack soul, and are only being released to make more money.

Despite “Toy Story 4” being a spectacular movie, many moviegoers, including myself, believe that it was an unnecessary addition to the perfect ending of “Toy Story 3.”

Comedy

Summer 2019 was mainly dominated by sequels and remakes, and some great comedies were regretfully overshadowed.

“Booksmart,” Olivia Wilde’s feature directorial debut, was expected to perform well, but ended up struggling in the box office. This is especially unfortunate due to how great the movie was, having garnered positive reviews from critics and audiences.

Similarly to “Booksmart,” “Late Night” and “Blinded by the Light” are comedies written and directed by women. These films, although hilarious and original, performed poorly in the box office and were outshined by big budget films.

Horror

This season had a high number of horror movies, with a number of them being adaptations or sequels. “Child’s Play” and “Annabelle Comes Home,” both revolved around creepy dolls and both film series had the former being a reboot while the latter being a sequel. To top them off, both films did well enough in the box office.

Academy award winner Octavia Spencer starred in “Ma,” which made $60 million on a $5 million budget, and showcased the actor’s range.

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Ari Aster followed his terrifying 2018 film “Hereditary” with his shocking new film “Midsommar.”
Photo courtesy of A24

Ari Aster, the writer and director of 2018’s “Hereditary,” released the unsettling and gruesome “Midsommar.” This film, made by the indie powerhouse A24, shocked and horrified audiences.

More recently, “Ready or Not” hit theaters. This film revolves around a bride who fights for her life in a deadly game of hide-and-seek with her sinister new in-laws. The film is currently doing well in the box office and is gaining positive reviews.

Drama

Although summertime is usually filled with big budget blockbusters, this movie season highlighted great drama films.

“Rocketman” told the biographical story of musician Elton John, and even generated some Oscar buzz for Taron Egerton’s performance in the starring role.

A24 released “The Farewell” and “The Last Black Man in San Francisco,” two films that were praised by critics and put minority actors and stories in the spotlight.

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Quentin Tarantino’s “Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood” became the filmmaker’s best opening weekend ever.
Photo courtesy of Sony Pictures Entertainment

Quentin Tarantino’s much anticipated “Once Upon a Time…in Hollywood” was released in theaters, grossing over $200 million and became the filmmaker’s best opening weekend ever. The film is a love letter to 1960s Hollywood mixed with Tarantino’s usual violence and quick dialogue.

Although it looks like Disney and big budget franchises are dominating the box office, there is still a vast selection of films available to see. The summer movie season offered audiences a film in every genre, and paved the way for a promising fall movie season.

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