By: Brook Ellis
Summer means movies! If you’re tired of the same superhero flicks, check out our list of must see films featuring diverse casts, creators, and content.
THE SUMMER BLOCKBUSTER
In Theaters: Now
It would have been great to see Ocean’s 8 co-writer Olivia Milch (Netflix’s Dude and Sony Pictures’ upcoming Barbie) also serve as director of the film, still it makes our must see list. With ticket sales totaling over $100 million in the US and Canada, audiences seem to agree. This female powered heist film, a spinoff of the Ocean’s 11 series, sees Danny Ocean’s sister, Debbie (Sandra Bullock), plotting to rob the Met Gala. Cate Blanchett, Anne Hathaway, Mindy Kaling, Sarah Paulson, Rihanna, Helena Bonham Carter, and Awkwafina make up the rest of the “8” in Ocean’s 8. While reinventing the heist genre with women may be nothing new, they had me at robbing the Met Gala.
Available on HBO and HBO GO
Champions of Ray Bradbury, dystopian dramas and a shirtless Michael B Jordan will all find something to root for in Fahrenheit 451. Based on the novel you were probably assigned to read in school, Fahrenheit is set in a dystopian future where books are banned, television is life, suicide is common, and everyone lives in fear. Jordan, also an executive producer, stars as Guy Montag, a firefighter tasked with burning books and the homes of those who read them. While HBO’s take on the classic has garnered some poor reviews, it’s worth taking a look for yourself.
Sorry to Bother You
In Theaters: July 6th
Sorry to Bother You is the directorial debut of Boots Riley who also wrote the film. It follows Cash Green (Lakeith Stanfield of Atlanta and Get Out), a broke 20-something living in his uncle's garage. Desperate for a payday, Cash takes a job as a telemarketer but only finds success when he starts using his “white voice” with customers.
Sorry to Bother You, features an impressive cast including Donald Glover, Terry Crews, Tessa Thompson (Selma), and Omari Hardwick (Being Mary Jane). Adding a layer of duality that should be fun to watch, the sci-fi comedy employs the voices of actors David Cross (Arrested Development), Lily James (Downton Abbey) and Patton Oswalt (Ratatouille) as the “white voices” of Lakeith, Tessa and Omari’s characters.
THE ADAPTED YA NOVEL
The Miseducation of Cameron Post
In Theaters: August 3
Directed by Desiree Akhavan, The Miseducation of Cameron Post is based on the bestselling young adult novel of the same title. This comedy-drama, set in 1990’s Montana, tells the coming of age story of Cameron Post, a teenager sent to “conversion therapy” after her conservative family finds her making out with a girl.
You may be thinking: “sounds an awful lot like But I’m a Cheerleader.” However, while Cheerleader, a camp classic, introduced many of us to the concept of conversion camps, Miseducation’s more serious approach to the subject won it Sundance’s Grand Jury Prize.
Crazy Rich Asians
In Theaters: August 15
If you’re a fan of author Kevin Kwan then you already know the first book in his delightful trilogy is coming to the big screen this summer. Crazy Rich Asians delves into our collective fantasy of finding out our humble, hot, smart boyfriend is ALSO secretly crazy rich. Maybe that’s just my fantasy? In any case, it makes for a great plot line.
Heroine Rachel Chu (Fresh Off the Boat’s Constance Wu) is whisked into a world of trouble when boyfriend Nick Young (played by new to American eyes Henry Golding) takes her to his boyhood home in Singapore to attend a wedding. Nick’s boyhood home turns out to be a mansion and his family one of the richest in Asia. As Rachel contends with Nick’s uber wealthy, uber complicated family, Crazy Rich Asians gives us a peek inside the luxurious world of Singapore’s elite.