(Note: All release dates are subject to change; all information correct as of press time.)
The month of May is here and you know what that means; summer blockbuster season has arrived!
‘Marvel’s The Avengers’ kicked things off with an epic bang, but there’s also a whole avalanche of summer sizzlers vying for your attention all throughout the month.
The deliciously dark and quirky triumvirate of Tim Burton, Johnny Depp and Helena Bonham Carter team up once more for ‘Dark Shadows’, while Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill revive a former Depp vehicle in buddy cop flick ‘21 Jump Street’.
The fun continues with sci-fi comedy ‘Men In Black 3’, returning to our screens after a 10-year wait before Kristen Stewart attempts to shake off her ‘Twilight’ tag in action-adventure ‘Snow White and the Huntsman’.
Here are our May movie picks.
Week of 10 May
The Stars: Johnny Depp, Michelle Pfeiffer, Eva Green, Helena Bonham Carter, Chloë Grace Moretz
The Story: Based on the 1960’s gothic soap opera series of the same name, ‘Dark Shadows’ stars Johnny Depp as Barnabas Collins, a rich, powerful playboy and master of the Collinwood Manor. He breaks the heart of a witch, Angelique Bouchard (Eva Green), who in turn transforms him into a vampire and proceeds to bury him alive. Accidentally freed from his tomb two centuries later, he returns to find his once-magnificent estate in ruins and currently occupied by his dysfunctional descendants.
inSing says: Dark comedy, morbidity and quirkiness galore; all the hallmarks of a Tim Burton-Johnny Depp partnership. ‘Dark Shadows’ is the 8th collaboration between the director/actor duo and we sure hope that it continues along the veins of ‘Sweeney Todd’ and ‘Sleeping Hollow’. Burton has promised to inject a large dose of humor into the film which may rile fans of the original. But the question WE want to know is what took Depp so long to play a vampire? If ever there was a role that is deliciously suited to the man. We can’t wait!
Also opening: ’21 Jump Street’is the other TV-to-film adaption being released this week. This action-comedy stars Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill. Jason Statham also returns with another badass role in the movie ‘Safe’.
Week of 17 May
The Stars: Anna Kendrick, Brooklyn Decker, Cameron Diaz, Chris Rock, Dennis Quaid, Elizabeth Banks, Jennifer Lopez
The Story: Based on the hit book, the movie follows the ups and downs of four expectant couples. The four women are played by Cameron Diaz, as a Jillian Michaels-type TV host who gets pregnant; Anna Kendrick, as a food truck operator who conceives after a one night stand; Brooklyn Decker, as a trophy-wife type; and Elizabeth Banks, as the owner of a baby boutique. Jennifer Lopez also appears in the movie, as a woman who adopts from abroad.
inSing says: We’re looking forward to a hilarious yet forthright take on the universal yet always-unpredictable plight of the modern pregnant woman.
Each mother-to-be experiences a dilemma of her own; TV fitness guru Jules (Diaz) finds that her high-octane lifestyle does not compete with the obligations of pregnancy while baby-crazy author/advocate Wendy (Banks) gets a taste of her own advice as pregnancy hormones make for a (sexually) demanding conduct.
The husbands are not spared either as each of them go through a series of anxieties and competition amongst themselves! While the whole Hollywood star ensemble idea isn't new, the thought of seeing big stars like Banks and Diaz take on pregnancy seems enticing enough.
‘What To Expect When You're Expecting’ suggests a (much needed) fresh tone which might click well with both young adults and mature audiences.
Also opening: Another ensemble showing this week is ‘The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel’ featuring cinema stalwarts such as Bill Nighy and Judi Dench. Also look out for Singapore horror flick ‘Ghost On Air’ starring Dennis Chew and ex-Nominated Member of Parliament herself, Eunice Olsen.
Week of 24 May
The Stars: Will Smith, Tommy Lee Jones, Josh Brolin, Emma Thompson
The Story: The ‘Men in Black’ are back, almost 10 years since the release of its predecessor and 15 years after the release of the original movie.
‘Men In Black 3’ sees Agent J (Will Smith) travelling back in time to the 1960’s to stop an alien criminal from assassinating his friend Agent K (Tommy Lee Jones).
inSing says: So how does the big studio boys at Columbia Pictures revive a decade-old franchise and pair up a now 65-year-old Tommy Lee Jones and 43-year-old Will Smith in suits and shades without coming across as tacky?
Insert a time-travelling storyline of course! Ah, very smart. It will now be up to Smith and Josh Brolin (who plays the younger Agent K) to pick up the load this time around. Will this franchise, previously stagnating in development hell, fly with a brand new audience?
Also opening: ‘The Raid: Redemption’, Indonesia’s breakout martial arts film which stars rising action hero Iko Uwais and featuring music from Linkin Park’s Mike Shinoda, has been doing well in the international film festival circuit and is definitely worth checking out. Korean crime thriller ‘The Killer Wolf’ also opens this week.
Week of 31 May
The Stars: Kristen Stewart, Charlize Theron, Chris Hemsworth, Ian McShane
The Story: ‘Snow White And The Huntsman’ reworks the classic fairytale into a fantasy action epic. It stars Kristen Stewart as Snow White, the only person in all the land fairer than the Evil Queen (Charlize Theron), and destined to surpass her as the kingdom’s future ruler.
The Queen is hell-bent on destroying her stepdaughter but what she doesn’t know is that she is training in the art of war with a huntsman (Chris Hemsworth), in a bid usurp the Queen’s tyrannical reign of terror.
inSing says: This is the second big screen adaptation of the Snow White legend to pop up in as many months (the first being ‘Mirror Mirror’), but all eyes will inevitably be on Twilight-tee Kristen Stewart.
The soon-to-be vampire has openly criticized the passive character of Bella Swan when comparing to her action heroine role in this movie (We always thought it was just her wooden acting).
With talks of ‘Snow White And The Huntsman’ being made into a trilogy (depending on its box office), we sure hope for her sake than she can surprise us with a kickass Sigourney Weaver-type performance. Then again, we’re not really keeping our hopes up.
Also opening: For horror-comedy fans, there’s ‘Piranha 3DD’, the sequel to the 2010 gore-fest which sees Ving Rhames and Christopher Lloyd reprising their roles. Also showing is murder-thriller ‘The Woman In The Fifth’ starring Ethan Hawke and Kristin Scott Thomas.