We’re almost to the back-half of the year, so it’s time to grab another ten movies we’re excited to miss.
With theaters re-opening and more films locking in release dates after shuffling around the calendar, there are a ton of new movies to choose from. Some of these howlers are holdovers from our start of the year list (and some are even leftovers from 2020’s least anticipated lists!). Sequels, prequels, spin-offs and remakes dot the list of films we’re happy to avoid this year. As a bonus, we’ve also picked a handful of flicks that either have very little info available or that we’re honestly on the fence about.
Most Anticipated Movies of 2021, Part 2.
Space Jam: A New Legacy (July 16)
NBA superstar LeBron James teams up with Bugs Bunny and the rest of the Looney Tunes for this long-awaited sequel.
Long awaited by who? The boys in marketing desperately trying to keep the Looney Toons relevant enough to move merchandise? LeBron James, so he can take one more whack at surpassing Michael Jordan’s legacy? This is the epitome of a needless sequel to the already questionable original Space Jam.
Snake Eyes (July 23)
A G.I. Joe spin-off centered around the character of Snake Eyes.
The action in the trailer is pretty solid, but I didn’t think anyone was still trying to jump-start the lifeless corpse of the GI Joe movie franchise.
A needless sequel and a spin-off movie in the first two spots? Man, we’re really playing the hits here. Now we just need a desperate attempt by Disney to turn another one of their theme park rides into a movie franchise…
Jungle Cruise (July 30)
Lily travels from London, England to the Amazon jungle and enlists Frank’s questionable services to guide her downriver on La Quila—his ramshackle-but-charming boat. Lily is determined to uncover an ancient tree with unparalleled healing abilities—possessing the power to change the future of medicine.
…And check. Despite the star power of The Rock and Emily Blunt, I don’t think this slow boat to nowhere is going to make waves. Wasn’t Blunt happy with having survived a stint as Mary Poppins?
Demonic (August 20)
A young woman unleashes terrifying demons when supernatural forces at the root of a decades-old rift between mother and daughter are ruthlessly revealed.
I hate to bet against Neill Blomkamp, but…Demonic looks to be very genre-generic. The grainy film quality, the stock heroine, religious/satanic imagery splashed liberally all over the place. Even the monster and the soundtrack feel like I’ve seen and heard them all before. Hopefully Blomkamp is using these elements to lull us into a fall sense of familiarity, instead of turning out a bog-standard horror flick.
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings (September 3)
The movie, based on Marvel Comics, will focus on Shang-Chi; ‘The Master of Kung-Fu’ as he grapples with his family’s heroic legacy and his father’s villainous machinations.
The trailer just dropped this week, so I feel better about where Shang-Chi is at…but I’m still not excited about it. The action is solid, and the ten rings actually look like a pretty cool power, but the question remains how this hero fits into a Marvel-verse where he needs to stand out amongst dozens of god-slaying heroes.
Malignant (September 10)
Original horror thriller from director James Wan.
Ohh boy. A new horror movie from the brain behind The Conjuring series. And no images, trailer, or plot information to boot? The studio must have a ton of confidence in this flick!
Jackass 4 (October 22)
After ten years, the Jackass crew is back for their final crusade.
I guess Jackass really wanted a spot on our Fumbled Fourth Films list. I feel like the cast of this series has really branched into 1. folks who’ve gone legit and don’t need to do these films, and 2. people who really, really need an intervention to stop doing these films.
Top Gun: Maverick (November 19)
After more than thirty years of service as one of the Navy’s top aviators, Pete “Maverick” Mitchell (Tom Cruise) is where he belongs, pushing the envelope as a courageous test pilot and dodging the advancement in rank that would ground him. When he finds himself training a detachment of Top Gun graduates for a specialized mission the likes of which no living pilot has ever seen, Maverick encounters Lt. Bradley Bradshaw (Miles Teller), call sign: “Rooster,” the son of Maverick’s late friend and Radar Intercept Officer Lt. Nick Bradshaw, aka “Goose.”
I thought I couldn’t possibly be less interested in this sequel, and then I learned that Miles Teller is the new protege to Tom Cruise’s Maverick. That’s like handing out Ipecac flavored popcorn topping with every ticket sold. Request denied, Maverick, the pattern is full.
West Side Story (December 10)
Directed by Academy Award® winner Steven Spielberg, from a screenplay by Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award® winner Tony Kushner, “West Side Story” tells the classic tale of fierce rivalries and young love in 1957 New York City.
We’ve officially covered all of the deadly sins of movie making. We’ve seen needless sequels galore, derivative genre fare, shameless merchandising cash-ins, spin-offs and now, to cap it all off, an utterly unnecessary remake. We’ve already been let-down by one big name musical this year with In the Heights, and nothing about Spielberg’s West Side Story looks like an improvement on the classic.
Sing 2 (December 22)
Buster Moon and his friends must persuade reclusive rock star Clay Calloway to join them for the opening of a new show.
The original Sing was one of my most hated films of the last decade. Number four to be exact. It’s a soulless, talent-less, mockery of a talent contest film…so of course it’s getting a sequel. Avoid this one like the plague.
Don’t Breathe 2 (August 13)
The sequel is set in the years following the initial deadly home invasion, where Norman Nordstrom (Stephen Lang) lives in quiet solace until his past sins catch up to him.
I honestly don’t see how this franchise is going to sell a sequel. As much as I enjoyed Lang as the antagonist of the first film, his story is pretty much wrapped up. I don’t see Jane Levy in the reported cast list, so we’re going into a sequel without the star of the first film. How does that even work? I could see the protagonists of the first film needing revenge and coming back for more, but with a new cast it seems like we’ll just get a rehash of the first film.
Finch (August 20)
On a post-apocalyptic earth, a robot, built to protect the life of his creator’s beloved dog, learns about life, love, friendship and what it means to be human.
This film is going to have to work really hard not to be a bastardized mash-up of Wall-E, Bicentennial Man, and A.I. It’s already feels a bit trite with the whole “robot learns about love from a dog” bit. It’s not like Tom Hank’s other science fiction offerings have been stellar lately, either.
The Addams Family 2 (October 1)
The Addams get tangled up in more wacky adventures and find themselves involved in hilarious run-ins with all sorts of unsuspecting characters. Sequel to the 2019 animated film, ‘The Addams Family‘.
Not much to go on here from the teaser and the description. The first animated film was mostly panned by critics, though it did wind up earning decent money. Not “rush a sequel out” money, but what do I know? Seeing as the teaser lampshades the questionable nature of sequels, I think the funniest aspect of this film is the voice talent dunking on the premise itself.
The King’s Man (December 22)
In the early years of the 20th century, the Kingsman agency is formed to stand against a cabal plotting a war to wipe out millions.
NOW we’ve covered all of the bases – a prequel to the Kingsman series. Without the spark of Taron Egerton to give the stodgy premise some much-needed energy, I’m not sure this origin story is going to bring in the franchise faithful. It’s not like the series trajectory was getting better as they made more films, anyway.