Board games, bad guys, and big booms

This year’s crop of summer blockbusters promises buns of steel and dialogue of wood.

Board games, bad guys, and big booms

Getty Images; AP; Universal Pictures; Photo Illustration by Taylor Shute

Like most young boys and all manufacturers of ibuprofen, I love summer movies. I love the one-dimensional characters and the two-breasted ladies. I love the catchphrases, the explosions and the catchphrases about people dying in explosions (“Don’t worry, baby—he had a blast”).

Here’s a preview of some of the big titles coming our way during the summer of 2012:

Battleship (May 18): At first it sounded kind of goofy to make a movie based on a Hasbro game—but now I’m totally psyched for the big-screen version of Boggle, starring Bruce Willis as a wisecracking consonant. And who doesn’t look forward to the inevitable blockbuster based on Monopoly? Can’t you see Russell Brand killing it as the Thimble? Heavens, we’ve never seen his cheeky kind here at Marvin Gardens!

Men in Black 3 (May 25): Will Smith stars as the Will Smith character who says, “Aw, hell no,” and other things that Will Smith always says.

Snow White and the Huntsman (June 1): Don’t get me wrong: it’s great that Jon Huntsman found work. But if you’re going to go with a failed Republican presidential candidate, why not Snow White and the Gingrich? The title gives off that lucrative Dr. Seuss vibe. Plus, imagine the epic climactic showdown . . . inside Newt’s moon colony!

Rock of Ages

(June 15): This Tom Cruise movie is inspired by a Broadway jukebox musical, which itself was inspired by a number of 1980s rock hits, which themselves were inspired by the performers’ dire need for cocaine money. Also, there is a monkey in it. Basically, Rock of Ages is one of those movies that sounds like a disaster until you see the trailer, at which point it begins to look like a disaster.

Abraham Lincoln Vampire Hunter

(June 22): It’s great that someone is taking literary and historical figures and placing them in books and movies alongside zombies and wraiths and whatnot. It’s a creative idea. President Lincoln taking an axe to vampires who are backing the Confederacy so they can keep feasting on slave blood? Normally I’d be the guy in the seventh row shouting, “Kill the ones from Twilight too, Abe!”

But if we reward this movie with our attendance, we know how Hollywood will respond. Next summer it’ll be George Washington vs. The Cursed Mummies of Ol’ Londontown. And after that we’re just a few short summers from David Spade starring in Jimmy Carter: Werewolf President. Stay away from this one, folks—we just can’t risk it.

G.I. Joe: Retaliation (June 29): First, let’s answer the obvious question: yes, Channing Tatum was constructed in a laboratory of bionics and beefcake to be America’s answer to Jude Law—an actor capable of starring in every movie ever. So far this year he’s been in The Vow and 21 Jump Street. In June he’ll star in Magic Mike, in which—to judge from the trailer—he plays a stripper with a heart of gold, buns of steel and dialogue of wood.

He’s also in this sequel, in which the G.I. Joeys (that’s probably not the right term) are framed as traitors and forced into exile with nothing but their grimaces and one-liners. Of course, if I remember anything about G.I. Joe from my childhood, the joke is on the bad guys because, you know, kung fu grip.

To judge from this movie’s credits, the producers spent most of the budget down at the Cool Nickname Store: Jinx, Flint, Snake Eyes, Roadblock, Tunnel Rat and Mouse. For added measure, the trailer has Welsh actor Jonathan Pryce actually saying the words, “On my orders, the G.I. Joes were terminated with extreme prejudice.” So I guess we can assume Hollywood abducted his wife and children. He said the stupid line, Hollywood—LET HIS FAMILY GO FREE.

The Dark Knight Rises (July 20): Trailer voice guy: “Chris O’Donnell is . . . not in the movie, thank goodness.”

Total Recall (Aug. 3): Sure, it may seem a little early to remake an action movie that most people still remember—but in Hollywood you spin the wheel and you do what the wheel says. By the way, here’s what the wheel says: sequel, sequel, adaptation, sequel, remake, board game, sequel, double sequel, sequel remake, comic book, comic book, entire movie based on one tweet, sequel, sequel, remake, trilogy inspired by a breakfast cereal, sequel.

Follow Scott Feschuk on Twitter @scottfeschuk

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