Though a few of the movies vying to be among the Top 5 summer blockbusters are already in area theaters — “Iron Man 3,” “The Great Gatsby,” “Star Trek: Into Darkness” — here are five upcoming films that should be on the top of moviegoers’ lists this summer. Release dates are subject to change.
MAN OF STEEL
Hard to believe it’s been 25 years since Christopher Reeve wound up a four-movie stint as Superman. “Steel,” starring relatively unknown Henry Cavill, is expected to do for Superman what “The Dark Knight” trilogy did to reignite the Batman franchise. I’m betting it generates more excitement than 2006’s “Superman Returns” did.
We’ve waited more than a decade to see the monster comedy team of Mike Wazowski (Billy Crystal) and Sully (John Goodman) reunited. This prequel, set in their college years, should be the most highly anticipated animated film this summer, despite two other high-profile sequels demanding your attention — “Despicable Me 2” and “Smurfs 2.”
THE LONE RANGER
OK, I know Westerns have not exactly thrived in the past 30 years, so this reboot might have more of an uphill battle than Superman, but with Johnny Depp cast as the Lone Ranger’s Comanche partner Tonto, this seems like a sure bet for a good time. “Ranger” is hoping to do for Westerns what “Pirates of the Caribbean” did for pirate movies.
THE WAY, WAY BACK
Not interested in all the big blockbuster action, sci-fi and animated films dominating the summer theater season? Try this low-budget, coming-of-age film starring Sam Rockwell, Steve Carell and Toni Collette, about a 14-year-old boy who bonds with the owner of a local water park. It was the favorite at the Sundance Film Festival and could be the sleeper hit of the summer.
Director Neill Blomkamp, who delivered the thought-provoking “District 9,” returns with another sci-fi action entry exploring class issues. Set in 2159, it shows an Earth divided into the rich, who live aboard a high-tech space station, and the poor, trying to survive on a dying planet. Stars Jodie Foster and Matt Damon have good track records for picking high-quality work.