“Alien: Covenant”, “Risk”, and “War Machine”: Movies to see in May

Another month has passed. It’s now May, part of the second third of the year, and hopefully the point where 2017 kicks into cinematic gear. That may or may not be the case, depending on how the month goes, but as the summer blockbuster season fast approaches, we’re left to ponder such things. Upon first glance, May isn’t looking too promising, but anything is possible. Below you will see ten films opening this month that I think are worth making time for. Some I’ve seen, some I haven’t, but they’re all hitting over the coming weeks. Take a gander and cross your fingers that some exceed expectations…

Here now are May’s best cinematic bets:

10. King Arthur: Legend of the Sword – Did anyone ask for this blockbuster? Nope, didn’t think so. And yet, here it is. For what it’s worth, the filmmaker delivering this one is Guy Ritchie, so hope springs eternal, I suppose? Perhaps this will be a surprise smash and start a new franchise…

9. 3 Generations – For what seems like years now The Weinstein Company has been trying to make this film into a thing. The cast is strong, led by Elle Fanning but also including Susan Sarandon and Naomi Watts. The talent is there, but after a title change (from About Ray) and being test screened to death, the hope of it being Oscar quality is nil. Still, anything is possible, right?

8. Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales – Even less necessary among blockbusters is the latest Pirates of the Caribbean sequel. If you’re into Johnny Depp as Captain Jack Sparrow then this could be up your alley. That’s not my thing, but hey…to each their own.

7. Wakefield – An also ran from the fall festival circuit last year, this Bryan Cranston vehicle is finally coming out this month. It’s a welcome small scale drama in a cinematic landscape this month that mostly feels like blockbusters. Plus, Crqnston is always rather compelling.

6. The Dinner – Fresh off a final festival appearance at the Tribeca Film Festival, this drama from Oren Moverman hits theaters on Friday. I may just post more in depth about it in the next few days, but it has a strong cast in place. Stay tuned for potentially more on this one soon!

5. Baywatch – A potential breakout raunchy comedy based on a kitschy television series? Yup, this is hoping to be the next 21 Jump Street, no question about it. Here, the pairing is Zac Efron and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, which of late has meant solid comedic offerings. Each has put out comedy gold over the last year or two, so combining their forces holds a lot of promise indeed.

4. Risk – A documentary from Laura Poitras about Wikileaks founder Julian Assange, this one just started building some big time buzz. A recent article even suggested that it’s already the one to beat in Best Documentary Feature. It’s a bit early to assume Academy Award wins, but it undeniably seems like a contender.

3. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 – I saw this Marvel sequel last week and will also be dedicating a full on article to it in the next day or two. If you looked at the updated Marvel ranking from a few days ago, you’d know that I found it to be solid enough. More on this one soon, so sit tight…

2. War Machine – Delayed out of 2016, this military satire is one of Netflix’s big acquisitions and could be their next attempt to crash the Oscar party. Brad Pitt lends his A list status and producing prowess to this one. Rumors are that it’s less than stellar, but it seems like something that could surprise. All eyes will be on this one ahead of its streaming debut later on this month. Maybe it will prove the doubters wrong?

1. Alien: Covenant – Ridley Scott sequelizes Prometheus while crafting another prequel to Alien here. A science fiction horror outing, it has Scott back in genre mode. That tends to be where he’s at his best, so there’s a chance that this could be closer to The Martian than The Counselor. We shall see folks. We shall see.

Honorable Mentions: Chuck, Drone, The Lovers, Paris Can Wait, Take Me, The Wedding Plan

Be sure to check out these movies throughout the month of May!

About Joey Magidson

A graduate of Stony Brook University (where he studied Cinema and Cultural Studies), resides in Brooklyn, New York. He contributes to several other film-related websites and is a member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association.

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