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Screenshot by Jenn Murphy

While summertime can be great for many things, like going to the beach, eating outside and seeing hunky men jog shirtless, it can be a bit of a rough spot when it comes to interesting movies. Since all of the darling little kiddos are out of school and mom desperately needs something to do with them so they don’t destroy the house with their sticky hands and excessive questions (can you tell that I just loooove kids?), most of the big movies that come out in the summertime are aimed towards families. Superheroes, “beloved” franchises and animated films dominate the theaters, which can be frustrating when that’s the absolute last thing you want to see.

 

(And I don’t want to shade all movies that fit under the tentpole umbrella; I absolutely loved “Wonder Woman” and so far I’ve heard pretty good things about the latest iteration of Spiderman. But other than that, yikes. “Cars 3“? The Mummy“? Really?)

 

It takes a little more digging this time of year to find movies that don’t feature minions, robots in disguise, or Johnny Depp trying to salvage what’s left of his career, but it’s definitely possible, as evidenced by the two great movies that I’m about to share with you. You might have to step out of your movie theater comfort zone to get to them, but I can assure you that it’ll definitely be worth it.

 

Baby Driver

I briefly mentioned last week how good “Baby Driver” is, so I thought I’d take this time to elaborate on that more. The film tells the story of a young getaway car driver named Baby (played by Ansel Elgort) who coordinates all of his action-packed getaway scenes to music. He’s trying to get out of the game, but his boss (played by Kevin Spacey of all people) isn’t ready to let him go. It’s like a bunch of awesome music videos packed into one film, and while that might sound a little silly in theory, on screen it works so well. Plus, it confirms my (probably unpopular) opinion that Jon Hamm doesn’t need to be a leading man, he should just be that one absurdly handsome character actor that everyone loves. It was definitely the most fun movie I’ve seen so far this summer, so get into it.

 

The Big Sick

Look no further, romantic comedy lovers, the next great one is here in the form of “The Big Sick.” It’s got all of the great romantic comedy beats: boy meets girl when she heckles him at a stand up comedy show, boy and girl face challenges in their relationship because boy is expected to fall in line and marry a fellow Pakistani woman as arranged by his parents, girl gets really sick and is then put into a medically induced coma…y’know, all the tropes. It might sound wildly unrealistic until you find out that it all actually happened to the film’s co-writer and star, the excellent Kumail Nanjiani, and his (spoiler alert, sort of?) wife and the film’s other co-writer, Emily V. Gordon. She’s played by the great Zoe Kazan, and her parents are played wonderfully by Holly Hunter and Ray Romano. It’s a seriously lovely film that’ll make you both cry and laugh, sometimes in the same scene.

 

What do you think? Have any other lesser-known movies from this summer that you loved or are excited to see? Did you also look up the lyrics to Blue Ivy Carter’s “4:44” freestyle on Rap Genius so you could fully appreciate its greatness? Boom shakalaka in the comments. And before I leave you to come up with my Emmy nomination predictions (they’re announced later this week!), remember…

 

Stay classy.

Jenn

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