Pop Culture

Avoid Your Family By Checking Out The Press's 2020 Spring/Summer Movie Preview

All the preview you need, really.
All the preview you need, really. United Artists Releasing
Believe it or not, 2019 isn't over yet.

Sure, this year felt like it lasted a decade, and everyone you know is screaming at each other about A) politics or B) The Rise of Skywalker, but we still have a couple days to go before the real fun starts. That's right; the 2020 Presidential election is a mere 11 months away.

To distract you from both your current familial entanglements and the upcoming endless campaign, we've compiled a list of six months' worth of upcoming movies. Try arguing about remakes and sequels instead of Bernie for a while.

The Grudge (January 3)
A reboot of the remake of the 2002 Japanese horror movie. That's about as thrilling a pitch you're going to get for a movie dumped the Friday after New Year's.

Bad Boys for Life (January 17)
The tagline for this nearly two decades overdue sequel is "Ride Together, Die Together." Dare we hope directors Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah have the guts to do what Michael Bay never could and kill Martin Lawrence?

Dolittle (January 17)
I will emerge from the theater after watching this* and still be unconvinced this isn't some elaborate joke movie a la Patton Oswalt's idea for a Duplass Brothers-helmed mumblecore Batman.

*Just kidding. I'm never watching this.

The Gentlemen (January 24)
Guy Ritchie returns to the mean streets of London after a stint in Agrabah. This time around, he's got Matthew McConaughey and Hugh Grant in tow. Fingers crossed for a Vinnie Jones cameo.

Gretel and Hansel (January 31)
"Tales from the Public Domain, Pt. 1"

Birds of Prey (And the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) (February 7)
DC is going to ride the Margot Robbie train to its bitter end.

That sounded dirtier than I intended.

Sonic the Hedgehog (February 14)
Jeff Fowler, the director of Sonic, has to be thanking the Great Old Ones that people will still be distracted by the eldritch horror of Cats when this CG monstrosity hits theaters.

Downhill (February 14)
Force Majeure, the 2014 Swedish movie this is based on, walked a delicate line between comedy and pathos. I don't know much about Nat Faxon and Jim Rash, who previously directed The Way Way Back, but lets just say casting Will "We're Going Streaking!" Ferrell as the lead doesn't feel like the right choice.

Fantasy Island (February 14)
They finally took the next logical step (after two TV series) and made this a horror movie. No word on whether Mr. Roarke is still Nyarlathotep (or an angel, whatever) in this version.

The Call of the Wild (February 21)
"Tales from the Public Domain, Pt. 2"

The Way Back (March 6)
I was a little confused by this one, because I know it as the Peter Weir movie he directed instead of a sequel to Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World. But that came out in 2010. This is a basketball movie starring Ben Affleck for some reason.

But seriously, when are we getting a Master and Commander sequel?

The Invisible Man (March 13)
"Tales from the Public Domain, Pt. ... wait, where were we?"

A Quiet Place Part II (March 20)
The sequel will be 90 minutes of people gluing acoustic tiles in place as they build a daycare center for all the other idiots who decided to have kids during an invasion by sound-sensitive aliens.

Mulan (March 27)
I'm confident the lack of musical numbers is just a smokescreen for the eventual reveal of Eddie Murphy's triumphant return as Mushu.

The New Mutants (April 3)
Bet there were a lot of interesting meetings going on at 20th Century Fox in the wake of Dark Phoenix's ... lackluster box office performance.

No Time To Die (April 10)
This is going to be the best movie of 2020 and I refuse to hear otherise.

Promising Young Woman (April 17)
The premise for this sounds like a pretty solid superhero origin story, honestly.

Black Widow (May 1)
"But she died!" (spoiler warning) I have a not-so-sneaking suspicion this is less a long-delayed showcase for Scarlett Johansson's Natalya Romanoff and more a jumping off point for Florence Pugh's Yelena Belova. Bonus points for David Harbour as "Fat Russian Cap."

The Woman in the Window (May 15)
With a script from August: Osage County writer Tracy Letts, you know this is going to be a laugh riot.

Fast and Furious 9 (May 22)
If this franchise doesn't somehow conclude with Vin Diesel bellowing about FAMILY while explosively decompressing outside the International Space Station, it's been a colossal waste of time.

Artemis Fowl (May 29)
Disney's quest to somehow ape the success of the Harry Potter franchise continues apace. Knowing their luck, it'll make even more money.

Wonder Woman 1984 (June 5)
"But he (Steve Trevor) died!" (spoiler warning) Kudos to Patty Jenkins and all concerned with finding new and innovative wayes to avoid associating Wonder Woman with the mostly toxic Snyderverse (he's still listed as producer).

And if we're being honest, that New Order-heavy trailer is dredging up a shit-ton of awkward memories.

Candyman (June 12)
Candyman is one of those horror movies that aficionadoes constantly sing the praises of while it seems like 90 percent of the population hasn't seen it. I guess what I'm saying is, why *not* remake it?

Soul (June 19)
Pixar has to make a (non-Cars-related) dud at some point, right? Maybe about a musician who dies in the movie's first 10 minutes?

Top Gun: Maverick (June 26)
The rumor is that production was delayed a year so Tom Cruise could actually learn to fly a fighter jet. I don't know if that's true, but I do know we're one step closer to Cruise actually dying while filming a movie and it's going to be spectacularly entertaining.

Minions: The Rise of Gru (July 3)
holy shit who cares

Ghostbusters: Afterlife (July 10)
The original Ghostbusters was funny and a box office success. And as much a fan I may have been, I'm still at a loss to explain why this is the pop culture hill so many people seem willing to die on.

"There hasn't been a ghost sighting in 30 years?" Afterlife is going to treat the 2016 movie like Rise of Skywalker treated The Last Jedi. All because a handful of man-babies were incensed a movie in which Dan Aykroyd receives a spectral blow job wasn't accorded enough respect by a bunch of girls, or something.

Purge 5 (July 10)
This series used to be a lot more entertaining, and not in a "hey, we're really living in a dystopian hellscape" way, for some reason.

Tenet (July 17)
Almost nothing is known about Christopher Nolan's latest, except that it stars John David Washington (BlacKKKlansman) as a secret agent who (maybe) is ressurrected to defeat Batman.

Just checking to see if you're actually reading these.

Jungle Cruise (July 24)
As jazzed as I am about an African Queen remake starring the Rock and Emily Blunt, I'm still half convinced Disney went on their intellectual property buying spree because they realized they were almost out of theme parks to make movies out of.

Morbius (July 31)
This is the second of Sony's "shared Spider-Man universe" movies (the first being Venom) that won't actually feature Spider-Man. Also, Jared Leto's titular antihero will be engaged to a character played by Adria Arjona, who is 21 years his junior. That's creepier than any "living vampire," in my opinion.

Infinite (August 7)
AKA "Mark Wahlberg Talks to His Past Lives." Say hi to your great-grandmother for me.

Bill and Ted Face the Music (August 21)
This will be the second best movie of 2020 and I refuse to hear otherwise, dude.
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Peter Vonder Haar writes movie reviews for the Houston Press and the occasional book. The first three novels in the "Clarke & Clarke Mysteries" - Lucky Town, Point Blank, and Empty Sky - are out now.
Contact: Pete Vonder Haar