The Ultimate Blockbuster Guide To 2013 Summer Movies

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Summer means going outside, enjoying your friends and family, taking trips...and holing up in the dark to see exactly what your favorite stars have been working on all throughout the year. From insanely high-budget superhero flicks to subdued slow-burners, summer films pack theaters everywhere, and we're about to enter those eagerly anticipated three months of the year. Here are the 30 films you shouldn't, nay, cannot miss this season, broken down into a handy-dandy week-by-week guide.

Written by Leila Brillson, Lexi Nisita, Hayden Manders, and Vanessa Golembewski.

Release Date: May 3


Movie: Iron Man 3
Summary: Tony Stark dusts off his Iron-y suit to really save the world (for real this time), with all the blasts, explosions, and RDJ one-liners you can handle. Also, expect to see about 800 extra suits.
Why We'll See It: Because Marvel films are SO fun, and we have to be caught up when Avengers 2 comes out!


Movie: The Iceman
Summary: Based on the true story of Richard Kuklinski, who managed to keep his hitman life a secret from his wife and daughter until his 1986 arrest, Iceman recounts what it takes to be a straight badass, even if that means including a James Franco cameo.
Why We'll See It: Because we haven't seen Winona Ryder get this dark since Beetlejuice.


Movie: Scatter My Ashes At Bergdorf's
Summary: An inside look into the clientele, buyers, and designers that make this iconic store an international shopping hub. Yes, there are clips of Anna Wintour.
Why We'll See It: Because it confirms our suspicion that there is at least one other person out there whose dying wish is to have their ashes spread amongst this shopping mecca. Plus, it may be Rachel Zoe's last on-screen appearance.

Photo: Courtesy of Warner Brothers; Video: Courtesy of Paramount Pictures/Marvel Studios; Millenium Films; Berney Films.
Release Date: May 10


Movie: The Great Gatsby
Summary: Do we really need to explain the plot? One of America's greatest writers crafts an impeccable character study that also manages to hold a mirror up to a rapidly evolving American society. Hollywood gets hold, amps up the love story, lands a gigantic budget. Deco decadence ensues.
Why We'll See It: As much as we love Baz Luhrmann, we can't deny that we're a little wary about this one. As a movie in and of itself, as a soundtrack, and as a visual experience, it will certainly be mind-blowing. But we're not sure if we'll ever be able to divorce ourselves completely from the incredibly complex, masterful source material. The film might add value to that, it might be considered scholarly blasphemy, but either way, this is one worth watching — if only because you know it's going to be the talk of the town all summer long.

Video: Courtesy of Warner Brothers.
Release Date: May 17


Movie: Star Trek: Into The Darkness
Summary: A former good guy goes bad, wreaking unprecedented havoc on the Enterprise and its allies. Captain Kirk does what he always does: Take it personally, seek revenge, risk his life in the process.
Why We'll See It: Though the world is tiring of endless remakes and reboots, the Star Trek franchise is easily expanded upon and, based on the last movie, seems to benefit from modern effects technology. This one has enough explosions to make you go deaf, but that won't stop us from watching Benedict Cumberbatch go on a massive owning spree (we'll just bring earplugs).


Movie: The English Teacher
Summary: Highlighting both the challenges of maintaining meaningful arts programs in public schools and the complexities of professional romances, this comedy features some of our favorite faces in the business. Oh, and it will make you remember all the ridiculous stuff you were forced to do in high school.
Why We'll See It: Because Julianne Moore channels Tina Fey in the most beautiful, self-deprecating way possible.


Movie: Frances-Ha
Summary: Girls wanna do stuff with their lives. But sometimes that stuff doesn't happen, and that's alright.
Why We'll See It: Because it transports us to Paris while making our silly, twenty-something dreams seem less foreign.

Video: Courtesy of Bad Robot Productions; Artina Films; Pine District Pictures.
Release Date: May 24


Movie: The Hangover Part III
Summary: The wolfpack returns to make another wealth of bad decisions. Except, this time Melissa McCarthy is in it.
Why We'll See It: It's the end of an era (we hope).


Movie: Only God Forgives
Summary: Both Ryan Gosling and Kristen Scott Thomas are stepping out of their usual wheelhouses in this heady action flick, which tells the tale of a man avenging his brother's seedy, twisted death in his own seedy, twisted ways.
Why We'll See It: Gos isn't the only draw here — if the trailer is any indication, this neo-noir looks like a disturbing but somehow beautiful exploration of aggression. Hopefully, it's the fresh take on this decade's many campy, violent fighter flicks we've been waiting for.


Movie: Before Midnight
Summary: We marveled at the romance of Before Sunrise, and we swooned at the promise of Before Midnight, but now that 18 years (!!) have passed since Jesse and Celine first met, we get to see that romance and promise put to the test.
Why We'll See It: Because the first two were so darn good, and were believably spaced nine years apart. This one also has the nine year gap, and we love that the film asks the audience to imagine what "passionate" love looks like nearly a decade later.


Movie: epic
Summary: Some say Ferngully, others say Avatar, and the appropriately titled epic seems to channel those films — but with a bit of a wink. We are guessing there will be lessons learned, bonds forged, battles won.
Why We'll See It: Um, the voice talent is, if we can say it, epic. Beyoncé, Amanda Seyfried, Christoph Waltz, Josh Hutcheson, Aziz Ansari, etc. etc.

Video: Courtesy of Legendary Pictures; Radius TWC; Sony Pictures Classics; Twentieth Century Fox Animation.
Release Date: May 31


Movie: The East
Summary: Ellen Page, Alexander Skarsgard, and Brit Marling star in this story of a private intelligence agent infiltrating a renegade "eco-activist group." The undercover op reveals an extensive, well-armed world of anarchists determined to take down the corporate elite — and a star-crossed love story that could derail the whole plan.
Why We'll See It: Brit Marling is probably one of the more underrated actresses in the industry today, and this looks like yet another intelligently written gem she's adding to her screenwriting and acting oeuvre. Plus, we're kind of into the idea of saying, "We knew her before..." when she gets the recognition she deserves.


Movie: Now You See Me
Summary: After all the bad things Gob Bluth did for magic's reputation, it's about time it got some street cred back. Jesse Eiesenberg and his fellow magicians — sorry, illusionists — use their other-worldly skills to rob banks and turn the world upside-down (making Morgan Freeman very upset).
Why We'll See It: Since all trailers have the exact same formula nowadays, it's hard to tell if this will be as exciting as it promises, but it will probably be fun to watch, even if it makes no lasting impression. Plus, we're huge fans of pretty much everyone on the cast list.

Video: Courtesy of Scott Free Productions; Summit Entertainment.
Release Date: June 7


Movie: Violet & Daisy
Summary: Part BFF romp, part crime drama, part who-knows-what, this elusive film follows two young girls in search of adventure with a taste for violence, who bite off a little more than they can chew.
Why We'll See It: With this incredibly varied dream-team cast, this movie promises to resist classification but win over your heart with its unexpected twists of both plot and message.


Movie: The Internship
Summary: The guys from Wedding Crashers lose their jobs and somehow get internships at Google, where everyone is better, younger, and nerdier than them.
Why We'll See It: Is this one big Google commercial? As much as we hate to pay NYC movie prices, out of sheer curiosity, this is just too bewildering not to check out.


Movie: Much Ado About Nothing
Summary: Shakespeare's play gets the Joss Whedon treatment.
Why We'll See It: For Whedon and Shakespeare fans alike, this is a must-see. For more casually-interested viewers, it's part of yet another Shakespeare vogue in popular cinema (to be followed by an upcoming version of Macbeth and Romeo and Juliet), and a bold attempt to marry modern banter and comedic timing with the original text.

Video: Courtesy of Warner Brothers; Regency Enterprises; Bellwether Pictures.
Release Date: June 12


Movie: This Is The End
Summary: James Franco, Emma Watson, Seth Rogen, and Jonah Hill are suddenly left as humanity's last hope. So, yeah, that doesn't exactly bode well for our species.
Why We'll See It: This is exactly what a summer blockbuster should be. Self-aware, not taking itself too seriously, a raucous theater experience, and aliens. Get your hidden flasks ready, this is gonna be a great night at the movies.

Video: Courtesy of Sony Pictures.
Release Date: June 13


Movie: Man of Steel
Summary: The story of Superman. Like, before he was Superman.
Why We'll See It: Because summer just ain't summer without a solid superhero movie.


Movie: The Bling Ring
Summary: Sofia Coppola nails the art of imagining what it would be like if you and your friends decided to rob the best-dressed celebrities in Hollywood.
Why We'll See It: Emma Watson throws Hermione to the wind and channels the snark and sex appeal of what we think will be our new favorite film character.

Video: Courtesy of Warner Brothers; A24.
Release Date: June 21


Movie: World War Z
Summary: Zombies take over the world at an alarming rate, and wouldn't you know, it's up to one ruggedly handsome man and his beautiful family to stop them!
Why We'll See It: This whole zombie apocalypse thing has to end sometime, but can't we just extend it for a few more gory moments (and another season of The Walking Dead)? Brad Pitt has been trying to make this movie for years, starting with a bidding war for the screen rights to the novel against Leonardo DiCaprio (we think the right man for the role won out here). Reviews of leaked scripts have compared it to the awe-inspiring Children of Men, but there's been as much doubt as there has been praise. Rewrites, re-shoots, and millions of dollars later, we can't wait to finally see the evidence.

Video: Courtesy of Paramount Pictures.
Release Date: June 28


Movie: I'm So Excited
Summary: Airline stewards stuck on a plane flying round and round but not going anywhere, with plenty of dance numbers in between. The latest from Almodovar promises to deliver his signature "serious comedy" style to great applause.
Why We'll See It: Early reviews say this is a return to the sex-filled insanity of the director's earlier years, and we're very interested to see how he approaches that for his increasingly international audience.


Movie: Byzantium
Summary: Saoirse Ronan attempts to right the wrongs of vampires past, while seeking refuge in a dilapidated coastal resort with her mother — no underlying teen abstinence message required.
Why We'll See It: Some of us are still hankering for a vampire fix, and with Ronan on board, this might fulfill the promise made, but never quite finished, by Twilight. Plus, a non-cheese vampire film could be a blessing for the genre.


Movie: White House Down
Summary: It's official: Director Roland Emmerich has an obsession with blowing up the White House. He first did it in Independence Day, and now he's traded in aliens for human terrorists as the United States erupts in a 21st century civil war.
Why We'll See It: Channing Tatum. Okay, we also can't deny the allure of an action film, and the shock-and-awe this trailer packs. But seriously, Channing Tatum.

Video: Courtesy of Sony Pictures Classics; StudioCanal; Centropolis Entertainment.
Release Date: July 12


Movie: Pacific Rim
Summary: In some futuristic apocalypse, humanity is threatened by sea monsters that are destroying Earth's resources. When an army of robot weapons is developed to protect the planet's population, real live humans are enlisted to save what technology cannot.
Why We'll See It: Contrary to popular belief, this is not based on a video game. It's all straight from one man's imagination; Guillermo del Toro, the master of fantasy. If Pan's Labyrinth was any indication, this is sure to be an unnerving feast for the eyes.

Video: Courtesy of Legendary Pictures.
Release Date: July 26

blue jasmine_
Movie: Blue Jasmine
Summary: A well-off New York housewife falls into an acute life crisis and is forced to live in San Francisco to cure her of her neuroses.
Why We'll See It: Woody Allen and neurosis? Sounds familiar, but we can't deny it's a match made in Hollywood story-telling heaven. Plus, Allen has come out and said this isn't a comedy, which has us wondering what he considers to be a drama.


Movie: The Wolverine
Summary: Oh, did you think that with an Oscar nom under his belt, Hugh Jackman is just going to be doing serious flicks from here on out? No way, he's got The Wolverine, his signature X-Men character's Origins sequel (which it appears Marvel is doing instead of giving all the X-men an origin story). This one sticks closer to the comic, setting Logan in modern day Japan and letting him struggle without his superhero-clad comrades.
Why We'll See It: Because we love Hugh Jackman. And hopefully if we go to see it, studios might get around to producing an original story for other mutant bad-asses, too.

Photo: Courtesy of Sony Pictures Classics; Video: Courtesy of Twentieth Century Fox.
Release Date: August 9


Movie: Elysium
Summary: Neill Blomkamp, the director of the Oscar-nominated film District 9, created a legit sci-fi movie with some sharp political commentary...on a relatively small budget. Now, with star power and a bit more money, he imagines another dystopia, but alongside it he envisions "Elysium", a fantasy world only belonging to the rich and powerful. Good science fiction comments on universal, topical issues set in a world that is not our own, and that is exactly what this movie is aiming to do.
Why We'll See It: Matt Damon looks gritty, broken, demented...and awesome. And District 9 was so darn good, it'd take a pretty serious flop to turn us out of Camp Blomkamp.

amanda-seyfried-lovelace-posterMovie: Lovelace
Summary: A biopic exposing the exploitation porn star Linda Lovelace faced during her infamous career, and how she eventually broke free from the industry to help prevent other women from facing similar exploitation.
Why We'll See It: Amanda Seyfried stars in a role that — on paper — sounds perfect for Lindsay Lohan, but after seeing shots of the actress in character we're convinced Seyfried was made for this film. This doesn't look like some snuff film rooted in hedonism. It looks like a real human take on an industry that's often misconstrued and negatively judged. We're all for that.

Video: Courtesy of TriStar Pictures; Photo: Courtesy of Millenium Films.
Release Date: August 16


Movie: Kick-Ass 2
Summary: When Chloe Grace Moretz muttered a horrible word in the red band trailer of the original Kick-Ass, people were incensed: Even Moretz herself said she couldn't say the film's name at home. So, of course, the cult comic book would have to up its ante to get fans excited. And up the ante goes, with a pumping Sleigh Bells soundtrack and Chloe (as the über tough Hit Girl) showing Kick-Ass exactly how to be a superhero.
Why We'll See It: We've seen super geniuses and individuals with incredible powers. The story of some regular kids trying to do some good without a whole lot of cool gear or abilities will always be appealing.

Video: Courtesy of Universal Pictures.
Release Date: August 23


Movie: The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones
Summary: Secret magical societies. Hot boys. Cool, paranormal fight scenes. Oh, and so, so much teenage brooding. (So much palpable brooding and angst, we are quivering just thinking about it.) Now that Twilight is over, we need another series to capture our inner adolescent, and the popular Mortal Instruments books might be just that. Lily Collins is Clary, the young girl who is drawn into a witchy world by the enigmatic Jace (Jamie Campbell Bower) and they share many, many longing glances.
Why We'll See It: Um, what about "many, many longing glances" doesn't sound awesome?

Video: Courtesy of Sony Pictures Entertainment.