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Confessions of a Movie Buff

Posted: Jul 10, 2008

by Michael Buffalo Smith

It’s been a heck of a good summer for movies so far, with super heroes of every size and shape, wacky comedies from all of the masters, and the return of legends like Indiana Jones. But there is still plenty to look forward to this summer on the silver screen. I thought I’d run down a list of flicks I myself am eager to see. Ah, I can smell the popcorn now.

Hellboy II: The Golden Army opens tomorrow. I have really been looking forward to this one. I love the comic book and the first movie, and from what I’ve read and seen, the sequel beats out the first one. Ron Pearlman is the new Lon Chaney, man. He plays the best movie monsters and freaks, and Hellboy, the government’s “secret weapon,” is his crowning glory.

July 18  brings the opening of Hounddog.  Dakota Fanning stars in a movie about a young talented singer living in Alabama in the late 1950’s and her obsession with Elvis Presley. It is her obsession with seeing The King in concert that forever changes her life.

Of course, the 18th also means opening day for my personal (and apparently a lot of other people) most anticipated film of the summer, The Dark Knight. I’m sure by now everyone has heard about what a great job Heath Ledger does as The Joker in the last film completed before his untimely death. This Batman is my kind of movie, based on the darker comic novels like The Killing Joke and Arkham Asylum. And I just saw bootleg pictures of Harvey Dent’s transformation into Two Face. Gross, but cool.

What a weekend! Just across the hall from The Dark Knight, Meryl Streep stars in Mama Mia!  An independent, single mother who owns a small hotel on an idyllic Greek island, Donna is about to let go of Sophie, the spirited daughter she's raised alone. Loads of great Abba songs.

Same weekend, Lou Reed's Berlin rocks theatres nationwide. Lou Reed recorded the album Berlin in 1973. It was a commercial failure. Over the next 33 years, he never performed the album live. For five nights in December 2006 at St. Ann's Warehouse Brooklyn, Lou Reed performed his masterwork about love's dark sisters: jealousy, rage and loss. Should be killer.

Same weekend. What?? A Man Named Pearl, a documentary I reviewed last year, finally gets national release. Self-taught topiary artist Pearl Fryar's journey to national prominence began with a bigoted remark. SHot in Pearl's home town of  Bishopville, South Carolina.

July 25th brings my favorites Scully and Mulder back to the screen in The X-Files: I Want To Believe. Yes, I am a huge X fan, and Chris Carter promises lots more of what we love in this second big screen story based on the popular TV series. And doesn’t Gillian Anderson look hot withe her new longer hair?

Bustin' Down the Door also opens on July 25th. During the winter of 1975 in Hawaii, surfing was shaken to its core. A group of young surfers from Australia and South Africa sacrificed everything and put it all on the line to enhance a sport, a culture, and an industry that is today worth billions of dollars and has captured the imagination of the world.

The Mummy: Tomb of The Dragon Emperor opens August 1st. Brandon Fraiser returns in the third Mummy movie, packed with special effects, thrills and comedy.

Patti Smith: Dream of Life
drops into theaters on August 6th.
The godmother of punk, legendary singer, artist and poet Patti Smith emerged in the 1970’s, turning the music scene on its ear with her unique style. This multi-talented and private artist is followed over 11 years of international travel, through her spoken words, performances, lyrics, interviews, paintings, and photographs.

August 15th brings Tropic Thunder, a comedy about three actors filming a Vietnam War movie that somehow turns real. Ben Stiller, Jack Black and Robert Downey, Jr. (playing a white actor who plays an African American soldier) star, and the trailer looks hilarious.

Death Race 
opens August 22nd starring the new action hero,  Jason Statham.Terminal Island, New York: 2020. Overcrowding in the U.S. penal system has reached a breaking point. Prisons have been turned over to a monolithic Weyland Corporation, which sees jails full of thugs as an opportunity for televised sport. Adrenalized inmates, a global audience hungry for violence and a spectacular, enclosed arena come together to form the 'Death Race', the world’s biggest, most brutal sporting event. Five-time NASCAR champion Jensen Ames is a man who has become an expert at survival. After eight years of hard time, he has only six weeks before reuniting with his family. But when Weyland demands a driver to headline the big game, Ames is forced to submit. Action with a capital “A.”

Eagle Eye opens on September 28th, starring Billy Bob Thornton, Shia LaBeof, Rosario Dawson an Michaell Monaghan. Two strangers become the pawns of a mysterious woman they have never met, but who seems to know their every move. Realizing they are being used to further her diabolical plot, they must work together to outwit the woman before she has them killed.

Saw V hits in October 2008. In the fifth installment of the "Saw" franchise, Hoffman is seemingly the last person alive to carry on the Jigsaw legacy. But when his secret is threatened, Hoffman must go on the hunt to eliminate all loose ends. But the big question is, how will they bring the dead Jigsaw into this movie? They managed to do it last time. Prepare to be grossed out,

Quarantine. Now this one looks like it may very well be a real horror movie for Halloween, outdoing Saw V. We can only hope. I get so sick of flicks like The Ruins that promise the real deal, and then flop flat on their face. This is a remake of a Spanish movie called REC, and even the trailer is scary.

There are a lot of comic book movies I am looking forward to. The Avengers will be out in 2010, but before that we have to get the Captain America movie and the Thor movie, so The Captain, Thor, Hulk and Iron Man can team up. Before that, expect to see Iron Man 2.

X-Men Origins: Wolverine
hits theaters on May 1, 2009, starring Hugh Jackman, and delaying the release of X-Men 4 about a year.

DC Comics is doing a Justice League movie and another Superman, and Todd McFarlane promises a new Spawn epic. Looks like a dream come true for The Buffalo. Y’all know how I like my comic books.

Keep it Real. Keep it Southern.

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tuckerhead says...

Thanks Buff. Death Race I am there brother. Dark Knight and Eagle Eye too.

elaine1987 says...

The summer of freaks! I agree Michael, I love the comic characters on screen more than anything. Iron Man was excellent but Batman will be the best!

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