All things considered, this July doesn t boast as many big summer films as one might think. That said, the big movies we are getting this month are pretty huge, ranging from the next chapter of the MCU and one of Disney s highest-profile releases in some time to horror-meister Ari Aster s follow-up to Hereditary and the latest Quentin Tarantino flick. Throw in a surprise breakout hit from Sundance, and the top of the pile looks pretty promising. Read on to find out the five most anticipated movies by Rotten Tomatoes users and our fans on social media in July.1. Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019) 90%8,731 Want-to-See Votes#2 pick by our Instagram and Twitter fans, #3 pick by our Facebook fansOpens July 3Ever since Tom Holland swung into the Marvel Cinematic Universe as Spider-Man in Captain America: Civil War, fans have largely been on board with his earnest, self-deprecating portrayal of Peter Parker. That s good news for Marvel, because it s very likely that Spider-Man will become one of the linchpins of the franchise following Avengers: Endgame. With that in mind, hopes are high for this follow-up to his first solo MCU outing, which takes place after the events of Endgame and catches Peter up with his high school pals as they travel together to Europe. There, Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) tracks him down to team up with another man with superpowers to defeat a series of elemental threats. The film is already Certified Fresh, signaling a strong start to the post-Endgame MCU.2. Once Upon a Time... In Hollywood (2019) 85%831 Want-to-See Votes#1 pick by our Instagram and Twitter fans, #2 pick by our Facebook fansOpens July 26Is Quentin Tarantino really going to retire after he directs 10 films? We hope not, but in the meantime, let s hope he continues to churn out quality stuff. His latest effort is a cheeky, affectionate look back at the 1960s, specifically through the lens of a struggling, alcoholic actor (played b Leonardo DiCaprio) and his best friend and stunt double (played by Brad Pitt). Little was revealed about the plot of the film before it premiered at Cannes, save for the fact that the Manson Family Murders would somehow play into it, but Tarantino s name itself as well as a cast that includes not only DiCaprio and Pitt but also Margot Robbie, Timothy Olyphant, Al Pacino, Dakota Fanning, and Bruce Dern, among others shot this one right to the top of our Instagram and Twitter polls, with a second place finish on Facebook.3. Midsommar (2019)1,405 Want-to-See Votes#1 pick by our Facebook fans, #3 pick by our Instagram and Twitter fansOpens July 3Last year, director Ari Aster made a huge impression with his feature debut, Hereditary, a terrifying horror film wrapped up in a family drama about grief and loss. Now he returns with Midsommar, a terrifying or, at least, unsettling horror film wrapped up in a break-up movie, and those who found Hereditary effective are eager to see if Aster is a one-and-done or something more. The film centers on a group of friends including a couple whose relationship is on the rocks who journey to a remote village in Sweden for a once-in-a-lifetime festival, only to discover strange and dangerous things are afoot. Hereditary was somewhat divisive for moviegoers, and there s a strong chance it ll be the same for Midsommar, but there s no doubt that Ari Aster is a skilled craftsman, and who doesn t love a good scare at the movies from time to time?4. The Lion King (2019) 52%
An episode does have a name after all: Episode 2: "A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms" 87%. The name highlights one of our favorite moments from the newest season 8 episode of HBO s Game of Thrones, which aired on Sunday night.1. “I’ll Get Right On It” (More Than You Know, Gendry)(Photo by HBO)We’ve seen a bit of this in the trailer. Arya (Maisie Williams) says, “I know Death. He’s got many faces. I look forward to seeing this one.” What we didn’t know is that she was showing off in front of Gendry (Joe Dempsie).Persuading him to stop trying to convince her not to fight, Arya starts throwing daggers at a post. They land in a staggeringly perfect formation, and Gendry – well, if he wasn’t aroused by her presence before, he’s clearly sputtering over this display. So no, Arya’s whole “I know Death” speech wasn’t the highlight here. The highlight was Gendry’s worshipful response.2. “How Do You Know There Is an ‘Afterwards’”(Photo by Helen Sloan/HBO)Jaime (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) apologizes to Bran (Isaac Hempstead Wright) for trying to murder him. Bran gets it, though: The Fates had their way so that Bran could be this all-seeing wizard of uncomfortable stares. Jaime appreciates that Bran didn’t rat him out for that tower push, but what’s next? Bran will not confirm or deny that there is an afterwards. And for that, we think he’s being a bit of an asshole – the conversation was a highlight, but Bran is being a bit of a dick (more on that later).3. “What Happens Afterwards?”(Photo by Helen Sloan/HBO)There’s that word again, but let’s give a nod first to the scene in which Ser Jorah (Iain Glen) stands up for Tyrion (Peter Dinklage) and, it becomes apparent, suggests that Daenerys (Emilia Clarke) make nice with Sansa (Sophie Turner). Daenerys takes his advice. She visits Sansa, is surprised by Lord Royce’s (Rupert Vansittart) respectful greeting, and has that awkward “I’m going to try diplomacy” smile on her face – it makes everyone uncomfortable, but then Sansa, truthspeaker, diffuses that weirdness by telling Daenerys that she was as mistaken about Cersei’s true intentions as Tyrion was. (Deflect blame much, Dany?) Daenerys likes it when people are honest, so a point to Sansa. Then, Daenerys notes how Jon Snow (Kit Harington) has derailed her own plans to take the Iron Throne. She loves him, she says. Point to Daenerys. But, really, who’s keeping score? Daenerys and Sansa are having a real moment – kicking and screaming inside probably, but real.4. “I Want to Fight for Winterfell Lady Sansa”(Photo by Helen Sloan/HBO)Give it up for Theon (Alfie Allen), showing what repentance means (and that Sansa has some power in the room with the queen). Sansa is clearly moved by seeing her father’s former ward again – man parts or no.5. “My little Crow”(Photo by Helen Sloan/HBO)Jon’s reunion with Edd (Ben Crompton), Tormund (Kristofer Hivju), and Beric (Richard Dormer) is like a little amuse-bouche before the war. Tormund: “The big woman still here?” Yes, Tormund, the big woman is here. Will they consummate their thing?6. “I Don’t Know – No One’s Ever Tried”(Photo by HBO)So, the meeting of all of the principal characters (minus Cersei and Euron) at Winterfell had a few spectacular moments within it.First, “He’s tried many times with many Three-Eyed Ravens.” The “many Three-Eyed Ravens” part is baffling: This is a position that needs to be filled every few thousand years? I thought I’d read my histories, but the idea of “many Three-Eyed Ravens” is news to me. And Bran doesn t know because no one s ever tried ? Is the Three-Eyed Raven only seeing the past these days?Daenerys follows Ser Jorah’s advice and publicly declares her faith in and need for Tyrion. Haven’t we all felt like Tyrion at some point in our careers? Sometimes you just need a little PDA to make everything right.Theon steps up with a pseudo-apology to Bran, telling him he took the castle from him, so now he’s willing to face the Night King with Bran to make amends. Good luck with that, Theon. (We have the sinking feeling that we’re about to get a lesson in just deserts.)“We’re all going to die,” Tormund says, which gives voice to that sinking feeling. “But,” he says casting a glance over at his lady love, Brienne, “at least we die together.” New world order question: Tormund’s behavior is “creepy,” not “romantic”? I try to put myself in Brienne’s shoes – they’re big, that’s all I have to say.Finally, Tyrion insisting that Bran tell him his story is hilarious: “If only we were trapped in a castle, in the middle of winter with nowhere to go.” Tyrion surely knows that Bran may not make it – clearly Tyrion is thinking about his future book deal.7. “Do You Want to Grow Old in This Place?”(Photo by Helen Sloan/HBO)A friend summed up the black experience in the Seven Kingdoms: “Can we talk about Winterfell s reaction to black folks comin up in there!!?!” Though I feel Grey Worm’s (Jacob Anderson) intent when he asks Missandei (Nathalie Emmanuel) if she wants “to grow old in this place” and then also her wish to see Naath again, I also kind of feel like the Seven Kingdoms needs to be integrated. I wish she might have said something along the lines of I think we need to bring Naath to the Seven Kingdoms. Too bad about those dead wights walking.We need a vacation in Dorne to remind us what multiculturalism is. (Here’s hoping the prequel mixes it up lots more.)8. “And Now Our Watch Begins”Jon and Sam are on the ramparts having a – Wait, what? Where the hell did Ghost come from? Don’t try to distract us with clever dialogue from Edd. A direwolf just magicked up in here at Winterfell! That was a reunion we were waiting for, and it occurred off screen? Was there an online short we missed? A Ghost s Journey ?#GameofThrones Ghost showing up in this episode like pic.twitter.com/GWLD8lbamu TAMARA (@Bts_ARMYXOXOX) April 22, 20199. “We’re Probably Going to Die Soon”(Photo by HBO)“Seduced” may be a strong word to describe how Arya asked Gendry to have sex. She kind of insists that he service her before they maybe possibly die because of his shoddy blacksmithing skills on her new spear. Kidding. Honestly, it was a powerful female moment: She stated the facts plainly (they may all die) and said what she wanted (to have sex before that happens). He was free to participate or go on his way. And that is what consent looks like, folks.10. “A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms”(Photo by HBO)This episode has been a lovefest between Jaime and Brienne. She vouched for him when the council would have tossed him out, imprisoned him, or straight-up executed him. He scored points with viewers in telling her, “I’ll be honored to serve under your command – if you’ll have me.” Then later – facing an uncertain night with a dead foe – he gets into his cups and knights her. Brienne’s moist eyes reflected all of us in that moment. (If not you, then you have a black heart and only watch for boobs and zombies.)Pod – maker of sympathetic faces, singer of songs. ♥ him! Tormund – a suckler of teats. We’ll leave that there.“In the name of the Warrior, I charge you to be brave. In the name of the Father, I charge you to be just. In the name of the Mother, I charge you to defend the innocent. Arise, Brienne of Tarth, a knight of the Seven Kingdoms,” Ser Jaime said, dubbing her with a sword.11. “I Wish You Good Fortune, Cousin”The one-on-one Ser Jorah had with little she-bear Lyanna Mormont (Bella Ramsey) went exactly as expected, with him trying to convince the tween Lady of House Mormont to retire to the crypt: “You’re the future of the House.” She, absolutely refusing: “I pledged to fight for the North, and I will fight.”Then, you know, Sam (John Bradley) interrupts to give Ser Jorah his family’s Valyrian steel sword, Heartsbane.12. “My Name – My Real Name – Is Aegon Targaryen”Jon’s in the crypt making brooding look good, when Daenerys comes in. “Who’s that?” she asks. “Mom,” he (essentially) says. He tells her the story of Lyanna and Rhaegar, and Daenerys is not exactly happy to have her lover be another contender for the Iron Throne. But before she can get pissed, horns blow and they dash out and nod to each other on the ramparts before, we assume, dashing off to mount dragons Drogon and Rhaegal.Dracarys, motherf ers. DRACARYS The final season of #GameOfThrones premieres tomorrow! pic.twitter.com/go9V3Y6LZ9 Rotten Tomatoes (@RottenTomatoes) April 13, 2019Plus! A New “Jenny” SongFlorence + The Machine are the latest musical act to contribute to the Game of Thrones phenomenon. Have a listen in the video above.What was your favorite moment from the episode? Tell us in the comments.Game of Thrones airs on Sundays at 9 p.m. on HBO.
Few industries enjoy taking really, really long extended holiday vacations quite like Hollywood, and when we get to this time of the year, there s rarely much in the realm of movie development news to discuss. Last week, we covered the year s biggest Fresh news stories, and this week, we re looking at the ones we deemed most Rotten instead.JANUARY: KEVIN HART PASSES GO, WILL COLLECT (AT LEAST) 0, IN MONOPOLY(Photo by Warner Bros.)Kevin Hart s Tomatometer has been getting better in the last few years, starting with his partnership with Dwayne Johnson in Central Intelligence (which carried into their Jumanji movies), and including his voice role in Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie (Certified Fresh at 88%). Before 2016, however, his track record mostly carried a broad series of Rotten splotches, with only a few Fresh tomatoes, and most of those were for his comedy concert films. Hart had several new movies announced in 2019 (including Black Friday, Extreme Job, and remakes of Scrooged and Uptown Saturday Night), but it all started in January with the long-in-development board game adaptation of Monopoly. The idea of a movie based on the classic Monopoly board game has been kicking around for over a decade, including a time when Ridley Scott was attached, but the Monopoly movie we ll actually get sounds a drastic switch. Kevin Hart will star in Monopoly for Lionsgate and Hasbro, with his Ride Along director Tim Story also on board.FEBRUARY: BRAD PITT S ZOMBIE FIGHT ENDS WITH SCRAPPING OF WORLD WAR Z SEQUEL (Photo by Jaap Buitendijk/Paramount Pictures)If you were a big fan of Brad Pitt and director Marc Foster s zombie movie World War Z, February brought some bad news. After years of near-starts and delays, Paramount Pictures finally, apparently definitively, pulled the plug on a World War Z sequel. Pre-production was reportedly already well underway for a six month shoot in Atlanta and other nations around the world, but that also meant the budget exploded to over 0 million, and that was the breaking point for Paramount. Technically, it sounds like World War Z might come back, even with a sequel, in the future, but if it does, it would be with a much lower budget, without Foster directing, and possibly without Brad Pitt as well. [Editor s note: an earlier version listed David Fincher as editor of World War Z. This has been corrected and we regret the error.]MARCH: DISNEY/FOX MERGER LEADS TO SHELVING OF PROMISING X-MEN PROJECTS (Photo by 20th Century Fox Film Corp.)In March, Disney finalized its .3 billion deal to acquire the entertainment assets of the Fox film and TV studios. The deal was widely applauded by Marvel Comics fans who are eager to see the X-Men and Fantastic Four characters and properties now available for Marvel Studios in their future movies (though probably not until after 2022). However, that also meant that some/many of the projects that Fox had been developing would be shelved, including X-Force, X-23, Kitty Pryde, and Madrox the Multiple Man. We ll never know what those movies might have been like, and it s definitely possible some would have been Rotten (given Fox s record on recent X-Men movies). They re good examples, however, of the wide scope of Marvel movies we would have gotten if Marvel and Sony also had Fox developing movies every year. How long will it take now for Marvel Studios to go deep enough into their catalog to greenlight movies like Kitty Pryde and Madrox the Multiple Man?APRIL: THE BAD MOMS MOMS TO GET THEIR OWN MOVIE(Photo by STX Entertainment)After Bad Moms earned 3 million globally in the summer of 2016, it was followed by the sequel A Bad Moms Christmas in 2017. That second film introduced grandmother characters played by Christine Baranski, Cheryl Hines, and Susan Sarandon, and in April, we learned that they re going to get their own movie called Bad Moms Moms. It s not yet known if Kristen Bell, Kathryn Hahn, and Mila Kunis will reprise their roles as well, or if the third movie might introduce the next set of older great-grandmas (who could then get their own movie called Bad Moms Moms Moms). Both Bad Moms and A Bad Moms Christmas earned Rotten Tomatometer scores at 58% and 30%, respectively.MAY: SONIC THE HEDGEHOG TRAILER BACKLASH SPARKS REDESIGN (Photo by @ Paramount Pictures)Some of the year s most Rotten stories represent missteps that were eventually corrected, but we are looking at these stories as they were at the time. In this case, Paramount appeared to get the message within the same week, but still, at the time, the reaction was very negative. After all, Paramount Pictures should ve seen this one coming. In April, the first Sonic the Hedgehog trailer debuted, and the collective fan backlash against Sonic s design was even louder this time. (The eyes are too small, the nose is at the wrong angle, and the teeth. Where to even begin on the teeth?) The Sonic the Hedgehog missteps were only accentuated by the timing of the trailer in the same week as the first Pokemon Detective Pikachu reviews, as that film has not one but dozens of video game characters that look pretty much exactly like they do in the games. The good news, however, is that Sonic the Hedgehog director Jeff Fowler quickly responded on Twitter, The message is loud and clear you aren t happy with the design you want changes. Those changes came later in the year as we got a new Sonic the Hedgehog trailer in which he did indeed look a lot more like he does in the games. Sonic the Hedgehog is now scheduled as a Valentine s release on 2/14/2020.JUNE: SECURITY CAMERAS TO BE HAUNTED AGAIN IN PARANORMAL ACTIVITY 7 (Photo by Paramount Pictures)It s now been over four years since 2015 s Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension earned the franchise s lowest box office to date, domestically earning one fifth less than the first film. The Paranormal Activity movies were also relatively affordable to produce, so it was probably inevitable that Paramount Pictures would want to start making them again. Producer Jason Blum (of Blumhouse Productions) is now developing Paranormal Activity 7 for Paramount, although the premise isn t yet known (though it seems obvious that it will probably be another found footage horror film). The Tomatometer scores for the last three films (24%, 39%, and 15%, respectively) don t offer much hope for the next installment, unfortunately. Since this news broke in June, Paramount has scheduled Paranormal Activity 7 for release on March 19, 2021, up against the second Tomb Raider movie starring Alicia Vikander, and the week before The Boss Baby 2.JULY: LOOK WHO S REMAKING LOOK WHO S TALKING(Photo by TriStar Pictures courtesy Everett Collection)One of the oddest examples of movies that ended up getting two sequels to justify it becoming a trilogy might arguably be 1989 s Look Who s Talking (Rotten at 59%), which was followed in 1990 by Look Who s Talking Too (Rotten at 14%), and in 1993 by Look Who s Talking Now (Rotten at 0%). John Travolta and Kirstie Alley starred in those movies about talking babies, and in the third movie, talking dogs. Despite those critical drubbings, Sony Pictures is now developing a Look Who s Talking reboot to be written and directed by Jeremy Garelick, whose 2015 comedy The Wedding Ringer earned a Rotten score at 27%. It s not yet known if Bruce Willis or any of the other voice actors might return for the reboot (but they probably won t).