Big budgeted summer flicks bomb the racks, making for perfect stocking stuffers for fans of action, comedy, and even classic horror.
MISSION IMPOSSIBLE-ROGUE NATION – The IMF is back with Tom Cruise leading the way as super agent Ethan Hunt. This time they are the targets when a sinister group ,the syndicate, declares all out war on them. They are discredited and must go on the run as they fight this new threat . Hunt assembles a covert team that includes various stars of the franchise including: Jeremy Renner, Simon Pegg , and Ving Rhames. Together they must pull off a spectacular heist sequence and various chases and bone breaking fights. Fun stuff. The opening bit with Cruise hanging onto to a plane as it takes off is letter perfect.
FANTASTIC FOUR – A fresh cast takes over the story of a family of super heroes who gain their powers from a high tech exploration of another dimension. the young cast is game and includes Miles Teller ,Michael B. Jordan, and Jamie Bell. This reworking of the story offers a meaty role to Reg E. Cathey (‘House of Cards’ and ‘The Wire’)as Franklin Richards ,a scientist who assembles the youngsters(which include his son and daughter)and spearheads the project which results in their getting super powers. Sadly the film only has time for two fights scenes as most of the time is devoted to the origin(which was covered more efficiently in the original film).
TED 2 – Mark Wahlberg ,as John, and his rude talking teddy bear are back in this sequel which shifts the focus onto Ted(the animated toy ). To save its marriage Ted tries to figure out a way to have children with his wife. Unfortunately he runs afoul of the legal system and must prove somehow that he is a legitimate soul. He hires an inexperienced lawyer and the hilarity begins. If you like this sort of thing. The jokes are crude but chuckling at them doesn’t make you a sexist .
WHAT HAVE YOU DOEN TO SOLANGE – This classic Italian horror flick finally lands a DVD release. It is well directed by the same guy who shot “A Fistful of Dollars” and “For a Few Dollars More” for Sergio Leone. The morbid story focuses on a black garbed killer who is brutally murdering students at a Catholic High School. An investigator probes the killings only to discover some of these kids were up to no good. Starring Camille Keaton whose next film would be the revenge classic, ‘I Spit on Your Grave.”
Tom Doty is a columnist for The Floyd County Times.