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Star Wars, dinosaur attacks and Jack-Jack: A guide to summer 2018's upcoming releases

POSTED May 10, 2018 8:39 a.m.
Jeff Peterson/

Constance Wu as Rachel in Warner Bros. Pictures...

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Summer is finally here and that can mean only one thing: Time to hole up in a darkened room with $7 Milk Duds and a bucket of extra-butter popcorn because these blockbusters aren’t going to watch themselves!

This year, though, is a little unusual since what is pretty much guaranteed to be the biggest movie of the summer — “Avengers: Infinity War” — came out a couple of weeks too early.

But that doesn’t mean there aren’t still plenty of reasons to go to the movies between now and Labor Day, the official end of the Hollywood summer. Whether it's to take in a thought-provoking period drama or just to watch a dinosaur eat stuff, there’s something for every taste.

Here is a guide to this summer’s wide releases aimed at broad audiences (in other words, everything but the R-rated stuff):

May

“Life of the Party” — Melissa McCarthy plays a middle-aged mother whose life is upended when she suddenly winds up single again, prompting her to go back to college to get the degree she never got and have the college experience she missed out on.

MPAA rating: PG-13 for sexual material, drug content and partying

Release date: May 11

“Breaking In” — A mother (Gabrielle Union) has to break into her late father’s impenetrable, high-tech mansion after her children are taken hostage inside by a band of criminals. Think “Die Hard,” but with a Mother’s Day twist.

MPAA rating: PG-13 for violence, menace, bloody images, sexual references and brief strong language

Release date: May 11

“The Seagull” — Because nothing screams summer movie more than an adaptation of Russian playwright Anton Chekhov's late 19th-century drama, right? Featuring an ensemble cast that includes Annette Bening, Saoirse Ronan and Elisabeth Moss, this period dramedy deals with the romantic entanglements of a group of artists and lovers on a Russian farm.

MPAA rating: PG-13 for some mature thematic elements, a scene of violence, drug use and partial nudity

Release date: The film's scheduled release is May 11, but it won't play at Broadway Centre Cinemas until late June.

“Pope Francis: A Man of His Word” — Legendary filmmaker Wim Wenders (“Wings of Desire”) gives a close-up look at the mission and message of Pope Francis, the “people’s pope,” in this documentary.

MPAA rating: PG for thematic material including images of suffering

Release date: May 18

“Show Dogs” — Will Arnett and a Rottweiler with the voice of Ludacris partner up to infiltrate an elite dog show suspected as a front for animal smugglers in this family comedy from the director of “Beverly Hills Chihuahua.”

MPAA rating: PG for suggestive and rude humor, language and some action

Release date: May 18

“Book Club” — A group of lifelong friends (Diane Keaton, Jane Fonda, Candice Bergen and Mary Steenburgen) are inspired to rekindle their love lives after they all read “50 Shades of Grey” in their book club.

MPAA rating: PG-13 for sex-related material throughout and for language

Release date: May 18

“Solo: A Star Wars Story” — “Even a guy named ‘Solo’ needs a co-pilot” is not the tagline for this Star Wars prequel/spinoff that tells the story of when Han met Chewie (and Lando), but it definitely should’ve been. With its famously fraught production and fan backlash against the new Star Wars movies more intense than ever, this return to a galaxy far, far away could either be one of the summer’s biggest hits or one of its biggest disappointments.

MPAA rating: PG-13 for sequences of sci-fi action/violence

Release date: May 25

“Mary Shelley” — Elle Fanning (“Maleficent”) stars in this biographical drama portraying the “Frankenstein” author’s destructive marriage to Percy Bysshe Shelley and the personal struggles that led to the creation of a defining work of Gothic literature.

MPAA rating: PG-13 for sexuality and thematic elements including substance abuse

Release date: May 25

June

“Adrift” — Based on the true story of Tami Oldham and Richard Sharp, this (wo)man vs. nature survival drama stars Shailene Woodley (“Divergent”) and Sam Claflin (“Me Before You”) as a couple caught in a deadly hurricane while sailing across the Pacific Ocean.

MPAA rating: N/A

Release date: June 1

“Ocean’s 8” — A star-studded cast assembles for this all-female “Ocean’s Eleven” spinoff. Playing the estranged sister of George Clooney’s character from the previous movies, Sandra Bullock leads the band of would-be thieves that also includes Anne Hathaway, Cate Blanchett, Mindy Kaling, Sarah Paulson, Helena Bonham Carter, Rihanna and Awkwafina.

MPAA rating: PG-13 for language, drug use and some suggestive content

Release date: June 8

“Won’t You Be My Neighbor?” — This documentary about the legacy of Fred Rogers and the simple but profound ways he challenged society premiered at this year’s Sundance Film Festival and has gone on to earn rave reviews on the festival circuit.

MPAA rating: N/A (probable G or PG)

Release date: June 8

“Incredibles 2” — Fourteen years in the making, this sequel picks up right where the last film left off as Elastigirl (Holly Hunter) heads out to save the world, leaving Mr. Incredible to handle the greatest threat of all: Jack-Jack.

MPAA rating: N/A (probable PG)

Release date: June 15

“Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom” — The threat of impending volcanic eruption forces Owen (Chris Pratt) and Claire (Bryce Dallas Howard) back to Isla Nublar and Jurassic World in a desperate attempt to save the dinosaurs from extinction all over again.

MPAA rating: PG-13 for intense sequences of science-fiction violence and peril

Release date: June 22

“Uncle Drew” — Desperate to win the Rucker Classic street ball tournament and defeat his rival (Nick Kroll), Dax (Lil Rel Howery, “Get Out”) recruits local legend Uncle Drew (Kyrie Irving) and his old basketball squad, now a bunch of septuagenarians.

MPAA rating: N/A

Release date: June 29

“Leave No Trace” — From Debra Granik, the writer-director of “Winter’s Bone” (the movie that earned a pre-“Hunger Games” Jennifer Lawrence her first Oscar nomination), comes this drama about a father (Ben Foster) and his 13-year-old daughter (Thomasin Harcourt McKenzie) whose idyllic life off the grid in the wilds of Oregon comes under threat when Social Services gets involved.

MPAA rating: PG for thematic material throughout

Release date: June 29

“Three Identical Strangers” — A twist-filled documentary that won the Special Jury Award at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, “Three Identical Strangers” tells the bizarre story of triplets separated at birth who, against all odds, are reunited — only to discover a strange and troubling secret behind it all.

MPAA rating: PG-13 for some mature thematic material

Release date: June 29

July

“Ant-Man and the Wasp” — This sequel to 2015’s “Ant-Man” starring Paul Rudd marks not only the 20th installment in the ever-expanding Marvel Cinematic Universe but also the first one to give room in its title to a female hero (Evangeline Lilly’s Wasp). Michael Douglas and Michelle Pfeiffer co-star.

MPAA rating: N/A (probable PG-13)

Release date: July 6

“Whitney” — Award-winning documentary filmmaker Kevin Macdonald (“Touching the Void”) gives an in-depth look at the life of Whitney Houston.

MPAA rating: N/A

Release date: July 6

“Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation” — Count Dracula and the “Drac Pack” (once again voiced by Adam Sandler and Co.) take a surprise vacation on a monster cruise liner. When the 545-year-young bloodsucker begins falling for a woman who may or may not be the direct descendant of the most famous vampire hunter in history, it’s Mavis’ turn to be overly protective.

MPAA rating: N/A (probable PG)

Release date: July 13

“Skyscraper” — The tallest building in the world has been overrun by terrorists and set on fire, and former FBI Hostage Rescue Team leader Will Sawyer's family is trapped inside. He’s been framed for it all, is being hunted by local authorities and he’s only got one leg. Luckily for Sawyer, though, he’s also played by Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson.

MPAA rating: N/A (probable PG-13)

Release date: July 13

“Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again” — Half-sequel, half-prequel to 2008’s hit musical that starred Meryl Streep (alongside Colin Firth, Pierce Brosnan and Stellan Skarsgard as a trio of ex-lovers), “Here We Go Again” returns to the Greek island of Kalokairi where a pregnant Sophie (Amanda Seyfried) learns more about her mother’s early life.

MPAA rating: PG-13 for some suggestive material

Release date: July 20

“Mission: Impossible — Fallout” — Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) and the agents of the IMF return as an entire career’s worth of life-or-death decisions and top-secret missions finally catch up to them. Also joining the fray this time around are Henry Cavill (“Man of Steel”) and his very real, not-CGI mustache.

MPAA rating: N/A

Release date: July 27

“Teen Titans GO! To the Movies” — Feeling left out that every other superhero seems to be getting their own movie, DC Comics' Teen Titans, led by Robin, head to Hollywood to grab the attention of an A-list director in this weirdly meta-animated kids’ comedy.

MPAA rating: PG for action and rude humor

Release date: July 27

“Christopher Robin” — Grown up and overwhelmed with life as a working father, an adult Christopher Robin (Ewan McGregor) turns to his old pals from the Hundred Acre Wood for help.

MPAA rating: N/A (probable PG)

Release date: Aug. 3

“The Spy Who Dumped Me” — Mila Kunis (“That ‘70s Show”) and Kate McKinnon (“Saturday Night Live”) star in this action-comedy as a pair of friends who find themselves navigating the messy and often deadly world of spies and assassins after it turns out one of their exes may not have been entirely upfront with them.

MPAA rating: N/A

Release date: Aug. 3

“The Darkest Minds” — After a disease kills most of the children across America, the ones who do survive come out of it with X-Men-style superpowers and are sent to government-operated “rehabilitation” facilities in this dystopian sci-fi movie based on a young adult novel by Alexandra Bracken.

MPAA rating: N/A

Release date: Aug. 3

“The Meg” — Former competitive diver-turned-model-turned-action movie star Jason Statham gets to put his many skills to use as he faces off against a giant, prehistoric shark in this action-thriller. Just don’t expect him to smile while doing it.

MPAA rating: PG-13 for action/peril, bloody images and some language

Release date: Aug. 10

“Alpha” — Set 20,000 years ago during the last ice age, “Alpha” follows a young man (Kodi Smit-McPhee, “X-Men: Apocalypse”) — who is left for dead by his tribesmen after being injured on a hunt — as he tries to find his way home with the help of a wolf.

MPAA rating: PG-13 for some intense peril

Release date: Aug. 17

“Crazy Rich Asians” — After agreeing to accompany her boyfriend to his best friend’s wedding in Singapore, born-and-raised New Yorker Rachel (Constance Wu) discovers her boyfriend doesn’t just come from serious money, but that he’s one of the most eligible bachelors in all of Asia.

MPAA rating: PG-13 for some suggestive content and language

Release date: Aug. 17

“Kin” — An ex-con (Jack Reynor) and his adopted brother (Myles Truitt) go on the run after finding a strange, ultra high-tech gun. James Franco, Dennis Quaid and Zoe Kravitz co-star in the film.

MPAA rating: PG-13 for gun violence and intense action, suggestive material, language, thematic elements and drinking

Release date: Aug. 31

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