Summer's Blockbuster Films Seem Promising

Los Angeles Times and Morning Edition film critic Kenneth Turan explains that he's actually looking forward to summer movies this year, including the latest Batman movie, The Dark Knight.

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RENEE MONTAGNE, host:

Well, if working out isn't your favorite thing, how about sitting in an air conditioned move theater. Hollywood rolls out the blockbuster event movies in the summer, and in the next few months there will be plenty of explosions on screen and the special effects that go great with popcorn.

Los Angeles Times and MORNING EDITION critic Kenneth Turan can't wait.

KENNETH TURAN: I know. I'm a critic. I'm only supposed to enjoy the serious Oscar contenders that come out in the fall. But this summer, I'm really looking forward to what director Christopher Nolan and Batman Christian Bale have cooked up for "The Dark Knight." And who wouldn't want to see the first Indiana Jones film in nearly 20 years?

(Soundbite of music)

TURAN: It used to be that I'd get this excited every summer. But as the movies became increasingly tailored to young males, it put a crimp into my favorite ritual - walking through theater lobbies and looking at the posters for upcoming summer films. In some years, the movies were so mindless that I couldn't find a film I even wanted to see, let alone review.

This summer has as many blockbuster movies as ever, but the studios are getting smarter about who is going to direct and star in them. After all, if you're going to do comic book movies, why not give them to someone as gifted as Guillermo Del Toro, the director of "Hellboy 2." And if you have to do comedies - I guess you do - why not give the stars roles they're suited for? This summer, Will Smith as cranky superhero Hancock looks especially funny.

(Soundbite of movie, "Hancock")

Unidentified Man: You see (unintelligible) all day. People should love you.

Mr. WILL SMITH (Actor): (as Hancock) Do I look like I care what people think?

TURAN: Even Adam Sandler looks promising as a Mossad assassin turned Manhattan hairdresser in "You Don't Mess with the Zohan."

(Soundbite of movie, "You Don't Mess with the Zohan")

Unidentified Woman: You have never cut hair before.

Mr. ADAM SANDLER (Actor): (as Zohan) I would do whatever it takes.

Unidentified Woman: Okay.

TURAN: My fingers are crossed, of course, that these movies are actually good. About the only sure thing Hollywood has this summer is a new animated film from Pixar about a robot named Wall-E. Even if you mess with the Zohan, you don't want to get in Pixar's way.

(Soundbite of music)

MONTAGNE: Kenneth Turan reviews movies for MORNING EDITION and the Los Angeles Times.

(Soundbite of music)

MONTAGNE: This is NPR News.

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