Chris Hemsworth superhero vehicle Thor, in theaters Friday, kicks off a Summer 2011 season dominated by comic book heroes and action-packed fantasy. Translation: Lots of pumped-up dudes. Here's a rundown of the upcoming blow torch action...
May 6: Thor has garnered across-the-board favorable reviews for its whimsy, Hemsworth's star-making performance and its engaging tale of an arrogant warrior banished to Earth and forced to live among humans, while falling in love with Natalie Portman, whom I adored until the pretentious Black Swan. Yes, please!
May 13: Priest, starring Brit Paul Bettany as a warrior priest who disobeys church law by teaming with a young, part-vampire sheriff, played by the delicious Cam Gigandet to track down some vampires blah blah blah. Sounds dreadful, aside from one word: Cam.
May 20: Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, starring Johnny Depp, Geoffrey Rush, Penelope Cruz, Keith Richards, Judi Dench. What a cast! Too bad they're all starring in this movie. Pass, thanks.
June 3: X Men: First Class, starring Scottish actor James McAvoy, Kevin Bacon, Jennifer Lawrence, Oliver Platt, Rose Byrne, January Jones. The fifth in the series, this X Men prequel is set in the 1960s.Yeah, whatever.
June 17: The Green Lantern, starring Ryan Reynolds, Blake Lively. Protectors of peace and justice, the Green Lantern Corps is a brotherhood of superpower-wielding warriors. They recruit human Hal Jordan to save the earth. Obviously, Reynolds' abs possess their own superpowers, while it's nice to see the talented actor continue to evolve from onscreen cut-up to true A-level presence.
July 1: Tranformers: Dark of the Moon, starring Shia LaBeouf. "When a mysterious event from Earth's past erupts into present day, it threatens to bring a war so big that the Transformers alone will not be able to save us." Never cared for this franchise and god knows, LaBeouf adds no hottie factor. Next...
July 15: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2, starring Daniel Radcliffe. What a reason to celebrate! That is, because this weary franchise is at last ending. Enough, already. God bless Radcliffe for maintaining his love for acting after playing this role for the past 75 years...
July 22: Captain America: The First Avenger, starring Chris Evans. Now we're talking, cool cats! Born during the Great Depression, Steve Rogers grew up a poor frail youth. After Super-Soldier Serum, he becomes a perfect male specimen and is assigned to fight evil as Captain America. Geez, does this sound like gay porn or what? Indeed, from all I've seen (above!), Evans has no trouble filling his codpiece.
July 29: The Devils Double, starring Dominic Cooper. Weirdo flick with cutie Cooper as Latif Yahia, body double to Uday Hussein, son of Saddam Hussein and big brother to Qusay Hussein. Early reviews called the film a "rocket-powered thriller," comparing it with Scarface. Cooper was a charmer in movie "Mamma Mia!"; I wish him luck in becoming a leading man.
Aug. 5: Rise of the Planet of the Apes, starring James Franco, John Lithgow. Set in present-day San Francisco, war leads to global apocalypse and to Earth becoming the Planet of the Apes. Haven't I seen this somewhere before... again and again? Sorry, as much as I adore and respect Franco, nobody will ever trump Charlton Heston and Roddy McDowell.
Aug. 19: Conan the Barbarian, starring Jason Momoa. Conan fights to avenge the murder of his papa and the slaughter of his village. Wasn't Arnold Schwarzenegger awful enough in the original? Sounds like a major dud to meese... Well, then. Except for Captain America, it appears I won't be spending much time inside a movie theater this summer.