Summer Movie Preview 2018: ‘Infinity War,’ ‘Crazy Rich Asians,’ ‘Jurassic World’

“Avengers: Infinity War”

Release date: April 27

Stars: Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Chadwick Boseman, Elizabeth Olsen, Chris Hemsworth, Chris Pratt, Scarlett Johansson, Zoe Saldana, Tom Holland

Why we want to see it: Okay, so “Infinity War” technically releases in late April, but that won’t stop the third installment in Marvel’s star-powered ensemble franchise from going down as the superhero event of the summer. Say goodbye to Loki and Ultron and hello to Thanos, the Avengers’ newest arch nemesis. Even if “Infinity War” turns out to be a heroic hodgepodge mess, it’s worth seeing for the Avengers debuts of the Guardians of the Galaxy and Black Panther alone. Disney, just take our money.

— Christi Carras


Release date: May 4

Stars: Charlize Theron, Mackenzie Davis, Mark Duplass, Ron Livingston

Why we want to see it: This one’s for the moms out there resorting to frozen pizza dinners and accidentally dropping iPhones on their babies’ faces. Theron’s turn as a beleaguered mother of three in this heartwarming and heart-wrenching family dramedy from the creators of “Juno” offers a fresh and honest take on parenting. And in the title nanny role, Davis shows off what she portrays best: pure, restorative optimism.

— CC

“Life of the Party”

Release Date: May 11, 2018

Stars: Melissa McCarthy, Maya Rudolph, Julie Bowen, and Debby Ryan

Why we want to see it: “Life of the Party” marks comedy duo Melissa McCarthy and Maya Rudolph’s rejoining on the big screen since their 2011 hit comedy “Bridesmaids.” They’re playing best friends again, but this time McCarthy is portraying Deanna, a recently divorced mother who goes back to college to get her degree and keeps Rudolph’s character Christine up-to-date on her scandalous shenanigans.  McCarthy and Rudolph are bound to deliver laughs with their reunion.

— Ariana Brockington

“Deadpool 2”

Release Date: May 18, 2018

Stars: Ryan Reynolds, Josh Brolin, Zazie Beetz, and Leslie Uggams

Why we want to see it: “Deadpool 2” is sure to avoid any potential for superhero-burnout with the witty, no-filter attitude Ryan Reynolds brings to the film as Deadpool. This time, he’s bringing along a team, featuring Domino, played by Zazie Beetz, and Terry Crews’s Bedlam, to help battle Josh Brolin as Cable. Deadpool will surely deliver some instantly-quotable, funny lines in this flick.

— AB

“On Chesil Beach”

Release Date: May 18, 2018

Stars: Saoirse Ronan and Billy Howle

Why we want to see it: In her first film release since her Oscar-nominated role in “Lady Bird,” Saoirse Ronan plays Florence Ponting, a conflicted newlywed, in “On Chesil Beach.” The novel the film is based on is written by author Ian McEwan, who also wrote “Atonement,” the picture that first brought Ronan Academy recognition. It will continue Ronan’s track record of choosing films with outspoken female leads.

— AB

“Solo: A Star Wars Story”

Release date: May 25

Stars: Alden Ehrenreich, Emilia Clarke, Thandie Newton, Donald Glover

Why we want to see it: Whoever pitched an origin story about Han Solo sans Harrison Ford at Disney’s creative headquarters proposed a daunting task to say the least. But after the undeniable success of “Rogue One” and the casting of “Game of Thrones’” Emilia Clarke and “Atlanta’s” Donald Glover as a young Lando Calrissian, the studio is already pulling out all the stops for another instant intergalactic hit. We’ve got a good feeling about this one.

— CC


Release Date: June 1, 2018

Stars: Shailene Woodley and Sam Claflin

Why we want to see it: “Adrift” begins as a seemingly sweet romantic movie taking place on a boat until the couple are left stranded in the middle of the ocean and fighting for survival after an unexpected storm. Both Shailene Woodley and Sam Claflin have played leads in films based on romantic novels before in “The Fault in Our Stars” and “Me Before You,” but this time the events are based on a true story written by author Steven Callahan. The movie will certainly be filled with tear-jerking, intense moments.

— AB


Release date: June 8

Stars: Toni Collette, Gabriel Byrne, Ann Dowd

Why we want to see it: “Hereditary” premiered at Sundance this year to glowing reviews  —  which for a horror movie means creating a story that’s about more than just the scares. Writer-director Ari Aster makes his feature debut with this Toni Collette-starrer about a family who discovers sinister secrets about their history.

— Kirsten Chuba

“Ocean’s 8”

Release Date: June 8, 2018

Stars: Sandra Bullock, Cate Blanchett, Anne Hathaway, Helena Bonham Carter, Sarah Paulson, Mindy Kaling, Awkwafina, and Rihanna

Why we want to see it: The cast alone is enough to convince moviegoers to see this all-female spin-off of the Ocean’s trilogy. Sandra Bullock’s Debbie Ocean recruits an all-star team to help her steal jewelry worth millions of dollars at the Met Gala. Cons, style, and celebrity cameos are a recipe for a summer blockbuster.

— AB

“Incredibles 2”

Release Date: June 15, 2018

Stars: Craig T. Nelson, Holly Hunter, Samuel L. Jackson, Sarah Vowell, and Brad Bird

Why we want to see it: Who hasn’t been waiting almost 15 years to see the Parrs come together as a family to protect the world in “Incredibles 2”? The animated film will pick up right where “The Incredibles” left off. Lovable, hilarious characters like Frozone and Edna Mode are also returning in the sequel that features Holly Hunter’s Elastigirl going off to save the day while Mr. Incredible takes on stay-at-home-dad duties.

— AB

“Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom”

Release date: June 22

Stars: Chris Pratt, Bryce Dallas Howard, Jeff Goldblum

Why we want to see it: It’s been three years since “Jurassic World” devoured the summer box office, and the highly-anticipated dynamic dino follow-up has finally arrived. “Fallen Kingdom” promises all the essential elements of unfettered entertainment: dazzling destinations, menacing monsters, and action-hero Pratt. And if that’s not enough, Goldblum reprises his role as “Jurassic Park” legend Dr. Ian Malcolm.

— CC

“The First Purge”

Release date: July 4

Stars: Marisa Tomei, Steve Harris, Mo McRae

Why we want to see it: A prequel to the three previous “Purge” films, “The First Purge” explores how the 12 hours of legal crime came to be. The politically charged plot seems to resonate now more than ever, with the government turning people against each other in a social experiment to reduce violence.

— KC

“Ant-Man and the Wasp”

Release Date: July 6

Stars: Paul Rudd, Evangeline Lilly, Michelle Pfeiffer, Hannah John-Kamen

Why we want to see it: Nothing says summer like superheroes and bugs, and “Ant-Man and the Wasp” delivers both with the second installment in Marvel’s most fun-sized franchise. Rudd returns as the ever-charming yet fierce Ant-Man, while Lilly thankfully adds another dynamic heroine to the superhero-verse’s ant-sized list of female forces. Even if “Infinity War’s” momentum falls short, “Ant-Man and the Wasp” will surely sustain Marvel’s summertime buzz.

— CC

“Mamma Mia: Here We Go Again”

Release date: July 20

Stars: Amanda Seyfried, Christine Baranski, Lily James

Why we want to see it: The “Mamma Mia!” sequel picks up a few years after the first, with Sophie pregnant and learning about her mother’s past. While Meryl Streep’s involvement is unclear, Cher joins the star-studded cast for more renditions of ABBA classics with a Greek island backdrop.

— KC

“Mission Impossible – Fallout”

Release date: July 27

Stars: Tom Cruise, Rebecca Ferguson, Henry Cavill, Angela Bassett, Vanessa Kirby

Why we want to see it: “Fallout” proves Cruise can still pack a punch, returning as the daring Ethan Hunt for the sixth installment of the smash secret agent franchise. High-speed motor chases, stealthy spy gear, incomprehensible stunts — the latest “Impossible” has it all for the team’s newest high-stakes assignment in Berlin, where Cruise is joined by some familiar action faces, including Super-Man himself, Cavill.

— CC

“Christopher Robin”

Release date: Aug. 3

Stars: Ewan McGregor, Chris O’Dowd, Brad Garrett

Why we want to see it: Christopher Robin is all grown up in this new take on the “Winnie the Pooh” story, now with a family of his own and struggling in his job. The whole cast of characters is back for this family-friendly revisit to the Hundred Acre Wood, with Pooh, Tigger, Eeyore and Piglet all making appearances.

— KC

“The Darkest Minds”

Release date: Aug. 3

Stars: Mandy Moore, Gwendoline Christie, Amandla Stenberg

Why we want to see it: Based on a young adult novel of the same name, the film stars a diverse group of super-powered teens on the run from a government internment camp. “Stranger Things” executive producer Shawn Levy is on board for this one, promising a masterful handling of all things sci-fi, and Stenberg, who played “Rue” in “Hunger Games,” gets her turn in the spotlight.

— KC


“The Meg”

Release date: Aug. 10

Stars: Jason Statham, Ruby Rose, Rainn Wilson

Why we want to see it: Thought the meglodon died out with the dinosaurs? Well, it appears the 70-foot prehistoric shark is back and out to attack Jason Statham’s submarine in the new action film, as the star tries to save innocent beachgoers from its grasp. It’s “Jaws,” but super-sized.

— KC

“Crazy Rich Asians”

Release Date: August 17, 2018

Stars: Constance Wu, Henry Golding, Gemma Chan, Ken Jeong, and Awkwafina

Why we want to see it: It’s 2018, and Hollywood is finally supporting a film with an entirely Asian main cast. Constance Wu’s Rachel travels to Singapore with her boyfriend and discovers his family is, to put it mildly, extremely wealthy. Based on the novel of the same name by Kevin Kwan, the film promises to deliver humor, glamour, beautiful scenery, and plenty of drama.

— AB

“Juliet, Naked”

Release date: Aug. 17

Stars: Rose Byrne, Ethan Hawke, Chris O’Dowd

Why we want to see it: An Australian, an American, and an Irishman walk into a romcom — here’s “Juliet, Naked,” a light, entertaining love story that plays to the strengths of its three seasoned leads. See Hawke as a reclusive former musician, O’Dowd as his number one fan, and Byrne stuck comically in-between as the trio navigate love and heartbreak in a British coastal town.

— CC

“The Happytime Murders”

Release date: Aug. 17

Stars: Melissa McCarthy, Elizabeth Banks, Joel McHale

Why we want to see it: While puppets tend to have an innocent and family-friendly image, “The Happytime Murders” smashes that idea with a hard R-Rated performance of puppets gone wild, indulging in plenty of sex and drugs in the film’s first looks. Produced by Melissa McCarthy, the story follows the a murder investigation of puppet cast members of an ‘80s children’s TV show.  

— KC

“Slender Man”

Release date: Aug. 24

Stars: Joey King, Javier Botet, Annalise Basso

Why we want to see it: Adding to the summer’s slew of horror movies, this movie has a real-life connection, adapting the story that made headlines in 2014 about two young girls who attacked their friend because of instructions from Slender Man. The cult character, who’s tall, thin and faceless with extremely long arms, has become an internet icon and will make its on-screen debut with this portrayal.

— KC

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