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They’re not standing around the watercooler, but Cheryl Sadler, Mark Meszoros, Mark Podolski and Nicole Franz are talking about what they’ve been watching, listening to and playing during their free time.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Summer's not thrilling or killing me

Warner Bros. Pictures
Hey, no pressure, Bats, but this summer ultimately being 
a winner or loser depends on you and "The Dark Knight Rises."

No, the calendar says it's not actually summer yet. And yet we're probably about halfway into what we consider the summer movie season.

Many of the movies I wrote about in April have arrived in theaters, and I've seen most of them, with apologies to "Men in Black III," "The Dictator" and "Dark Shadows." (Um, it's not you, it's me?)

So far, the summer's been .... good. Not great, but by no means bad. As you would hope, "Marvel's The Avengers" and "Prometheus" -- in which director Ridley Scott ventures back to his "Alien" universe -- have been the best of the bunch. Neither movie was everything I hoped it would be, but each is entertaining enough to get a solid recommendation.

I gave the same rating -- three stars out of four -- to "Battleship," easily the pleasant surprise of the season. A summer needs that really fun bad movie," and "Battleship" was this summer's.

My disappoints so far have come in "Snow White and the Huntsman" and "Rock of Ages." I expected neither to be outstanding, but I thought each had a lot more potential than it showed.

This week brings two more potential goodies: Pixar Animation Studio's "Brave" and "Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter." I saw the former Monday night and am returning to the same Northeast Ohio theater tonight to view the latter. I would tell you what I thought of "Brave," but then Abraham Lincoln would have to kill you. (In truth, I'm restricted from saying much until the movies open, so check on Friday morning for my reviews.)

There are a few potential gems to come. I'm inexplicably excited for the "Bourne" movie sans Matt Damon (whom I like), "The Bourne Legacy" (Aug. 3). Of course, the resetting of Spider-Man in "The Amazing Spider-Man" will be a must-see. And, if you know me, you know I wouldn't miss "The Dark Knight Rises" for a real-life version of Batman's utility belt. (OK, well, maybe.)

If "Rises" is anywhere near as good as its predecessor -- I gave "The Dark Knight" four stars -- and brings director Christopher Nolan's trilogy to a satisfying end, consider the summer a smashing success. 

-- Mark Meszoros | | @nhfeatures

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