The movie site Fandango recently checked in with its massive audience base to see what the summer's most anticipated film might be. It probably won't be a surprise that the winner was "Avengers: Age of Ultron," coming to thousands of theaters in just a few days.
Marvel's super-sized sequel to its 2012 mega-hit "Avengers" brings back the cast fans have grown to love, including
FULL COVERAGE: Summer Movie Sneaks
And that's just the appetizer. The multiplexes are poised to feed our insatiable appetite for big summer movies, and I would encourage you to pick and choose from the blockbuster buffet, including June's "Jurassic World," with
The menu is packed with so many tempting morsels that box-office pundits are predicting feast versus last year's famine — adjusted for inflation, it was the lowest summer take since 1992.
But like anything you put in your system, balance is key. It's why I am recommending a summer diet revamp — one that provides lots of gain with no pain. Promise. Basically reducing some of those Imax portions and replacing them with a better mix of movies will actually make the summer's entertainment fare more fulfilling.
Milk Duds and popcorn definitely have their place. But consider going light before you go dark.
Every summer, or most of them, has that one big comedy surprise like "The 40-Year-Old Virgin," "The Devil Wears Prada," "Midnight in Paris," or that bachelor party that brought one good and two bad "Hangovers" and other off-color but amusing "Superbad" fare.
Judd Apatow, arguably the headwaters for what has become an R-rated comedy stream, is back in the game with comic Amy Schumer as the star of "Trainwreck." I hope the title isn't an indication....
But summer 2015 is jammed with all manner of comedy. The sheer numbers of A-listers going for laughs are impressive.
Case in point is "Ricki and the Flash." This mix of humor, drama and music must make your must-see list. Written by
Streep and "Ricki" have a lot of company. Bradley Cooper as a military contractor and Emma Stone, his Air Force watchdog (a pair of prior Oscar nominees), team for Cameron Crowe's "Aloha." Hot on their heels is Oscar winner Reese Witherspoon, teaming with
You can find "Bridesmaids'"
One of the hottest tickets this summer is comedy courtesy of TV —
A word of caution — an overload of comedy isn't any better than binging on action/sci-fi.
So move onto some meatier stuff. There is a savory stew of documentaries, many with a distinctive Hollywood flavor, including "I Am Big Bird: The Caroll Spinney Story," on big yellow's puppeteer; "Dark Star: H.R. Giger's World," which should introduce a broader audience to the Swiss surrealist best known for the fearsome creature in
Or you might be more in the mood to sample the literary classics. "Far From the Madding Crowd" stars
"5 Flights Up," based on the novel "Heroic Measures," finds
Of the dramas offered this summer there are two I admit top my ticket wish list. First is "Mr. Holmes," starring
A confession — my own craving this summer is not "Avengers" but "The End of the Tour." The story is about one of my favorite troubled literary geniuses —
It catches the brilliant novelist early on, before depression had completely undone him, during a five-day interview conducted by Rolling Stone reporter David Lipsky, who is played by the always adroit Jesse Eisenberg.
Bottom line, opting for a balanced movie diet this summer will be worth it. No need to pass on "Ant-Man," in which Paul Rudd might be stinging. But find room on your plate for the likes of Segel going serious. He might be stunning.