2011 Summer Movie Preview: 50 Movies to Watch Once It’s Hot – ‘The Comedies’

ON

Time for round two of the 2011 Summer Movie Preview. After yesterday’s look at twelve blockbusters today I have a preview of 11 comedy and/or romantic comedies coming out this summer ranging from the sequel to the massive hit The Hangover to independent and more quiet comedy of Our Idiot Brother. Suffice to say, I think there will be something for pretty much everyone inside this batch of films, it’s just a matter of how raunchy you like your comedy and to what extent you’re willing to suffer through some of today’s rom-coms. Let’s have a look…

COMEDIES

I have a total of eleven comedies and/or romantic comedies to highlight and there are definitely two that stand out above the rest beginning with The Hangover Part II (5/26), a film that could have probably been included in my “Blockbusters” section, but what’s it really matter? The first film was budgeted at a minuscule $35 million and went on to make $277 million domestically, that is a serious chunk of change. However, buzz on the sequel after the trailer debuted (watch to the right) was that it looked to be the same film as the first one only this time it takes place in Thailand. Director Todd Phillips insists it’s better than the first one in the same way The Godfather Part II was better than The Godfather, hence the reason it’s not simply titled The Hangover 2. Could it be and will it be as big as the first?

The second comedy is one I can already tell you is going to be a hit because it is a pretty good film, Paul Feig’s Bridesmaids (5/13) starring Kristen Wiig, Maya Rudolph, Rose Byrne and a winning supporting performance from Jon Hamm this is the chick flick/wedding movie that even guys will enjoy. It’s a film that will get repeat viewings as it makes for a perfect date night film as well as a picture the girls will get together to go see. It definitely has its raunchy moments, with a dress-fitting scene that ends in a most unpredictable way, and it gets a bit too sweet for its own good by the end, but nonetheless it’s a film well worth seeing.

Next we have a pair of Jason Bateman features, the first being a film I’m hoping will be just as good as Bridesmaids. Along with Bateman, Horrible Bosses (7/8) stars “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” funny man Charlie Day along with Jason Sudeikis, Jennifer Aniston, Colin Farrell, Kevin Spacey, Donald Sutherland, Julie Bowen and Jamie Foxx. As the title implies, it revolves around some “horrible bosses” with the employees being Bateman, Sudeikis and Day and the bosses being Spacey, Farrell and Aniston. The fact it’s directed by Seth Gordon (Four Christmases) is a bit of a question mark, but the cast is quite promising.

Bateman’s second comedy starring opposite Ryan Reynolds is a bit more iffy. The Change-Up (8/5) is yet another entry into the body-switch genre wherein a womanizer (Reynolds) switches places with his married with kids buddy (Bateman) after a night of heavy drinking. The trailer promises poop-in-the-face jokes and other “been there” punch-lines. I’m not holding out much hope it will impress.

Columbia Pictures then offers up a pair of films including the Cameron Diaz, Jason Segel and Justin Timberlake comedy Bad Teacher (6/17) and the action-comedy 30 Minutes or Less (8/12) featuring Jesse Eisenberg (The Social Network), Aziz Ansari (The 40-Year-Old Virgin) and Danny McBride (Your Highness). Between the two I have more confidence in 30 Minutes or Less if only because it’s directed by Zombieland helmer Ruben Fleischer and probably stands less of a chance of getting all schmaltzy in the end which Bad Teacher is extremely likely to do considering the final sentence of the plot synopsis alone: “The consequences of her (Diaz) wild and outrageous schemes give her students, her coworkers, and even herself an education like no other.”

Timberlake will actually be seen in two summer comedies this year, the second being the Black Swan to Natalie Portman’s earlier White Swan, No Strings Attached. Just as No Strings attempted to find humor in the friends with benefits scenario, Will Gluck (Easy A) puts the plot right in the title. Friends with Benefits (7/22) stars Timberlake and Mila Kunis (Black Swan) in a story about two people that attempt to become… yup, you guessed it… friends with benefits. Oh, I wonder, will it work out? To be honest, with Gluck at the helm I wouldn’t be surprised if it didn’t, which is to say I have far more confidence in this version of the now cliche storyline than I did its predecessor.

A pair of other relationship comedies arrive via Warner Bros. with Something Borrowed (5/6) and Crazy, Stupid, Love (7/29), the latter of which looks to be 100-times better than the former. After having already seen Something Borrowed, I can say this, if Crazy, Stupid, Love isn’t better means it may be one of the worst movies ever. That said, I’ll comment no further on Something Borrowed and move to Hitch 2 Crazy, Stupid, Love in which Ryan Gosling teaches the recently divorced Steve Carell how to woo the ladies all while Gosling decides to ditch his lady’s man ways when he falls in love with Emma Stone. Boy, now there’s a film with all the current “it” stars of the moment.

Releasing the same week as Something Borrowed is Jumping the Broom (5/6), a film I’m now wishing I had driven the extra miles to see rather than subjecting myself to Something Borrowed, but we have to live with our choices. Then again, it looks just as bad, though I must admit a film with the beauty that is Paula Patton and the potential comedy of Mike Epps has to be a little better than the alternative.

Finally, the smaller feature of the bunch is the Weinstein’s Sundance pick-up Our Idiot Brother (8/26) starring Paul Rudd as the title character who is described as an idealist who is dealing with his over-bearing mother who crashes at the homes of his three ambitious sisters (Elizabeth Banks, Zooey Deschanel and Emily Mortimer) and brings truth, happiness and a sunny disposition into their lives while also wreaking havoc. Word is the film is quite good and one to truly look out for.

If you liked this installment be sure to check out the rest of my preview at the following links: