BitchWatch15 Summer Movies Worth Your Coins

Summers are meant for a few things: wearing light clothing, eating delicious foods, and cooling off in movie theaters. Movie studios flood theaters during the summer months, but that doesn’t mean all of those films are worth your time. For those who want to spend their coins on quality movies, here are 15 worth your time.

1. Afterimage

Director: Andrzej Wajda
Release Date: May 19, 2017

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Summer movies aren’t supposed to be tearjerkers, but Afterimage breaks the mold. The movie tells the story of Polish avant-garde artist Wladyslaw Strzeminski as his art suffers under a government requirement to make “Socialist Realist” art rather than the abstract he prefers to create. The heartbreaking movie follows his political exile and his push for equality.

2. Everything, Everything

Director: Stella Meghie
{ Warner Bros. Pictures }
Release Date: May 19, 2017

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Darnell Martin became the first Black woman to release a major studio film in 1994 when she inked a deal with Columbia Pictures for I Like It Like That. With the release of Everything, Everything, Stella Meghie joined a short list of Black women directors who’ve had nationwide releases. Everything, Everything chronicles a love affair between Maddy, a teen confined to her home due to a chronic illness, and Olly, her new next door neighbor. Even Beyoncé is a fan of the movie.

3. Wonder Woman

Director: Patty Jenkins
{ Warner Bros. Pictures }
Release Date: June 2, 2017

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I have four words about the forthcoming Wonder Woman movie: It’s about damn time. The demigod’s origin story has been absent from the big screen, but Diana is still one of the most beloved superheroes of all time. On June 2, her story will come alive—and hopefully inspire a generation of girls to fight evil, fight for justice, and, most important, fight for themselves.

4. Paint It Black

Director: Amber Tamblyn
Release Date: June 3, 2017

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Paint It Black is an adaptation of Janet Fitch’s novel about Josie (Alia Shawkat), a model who finds herself adrift after her boyfriend suddenly dies. It’s a dark movie about grief that isn’t for those who want a fun and light summer movie. However, it has some valuable gems to offer about the importance of family.

5. All Eyez On Me

Director: Benny Boom
{ Summit Entertainment }
Release Date: June 16, 2017

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Tupac Shakur died 21 years ago. Yet, his music—and overall legacy—continues to loom large over hip hop. Now, the son of a Black Panther is getting the big screen treatment. All Eyez on Me chronicles Shakur’s life from Brooklyn to Baltimore to California where he became one of the gods of rap. It also explores his cultural impact and his untimely death. It’s a hip- hop story for the ages.

6. The Beguiled

Director: Sofia Coppola
{ Focus Features }
Release Date: June 23, 2017

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Sofia Coppola’s The Beguiled is a remake of a 1971 Clint Eastwood film that maintains much of its original plot, but focuses primarily on women’s sexuality. When Union deserter Corporal John McBurney (Colin Farrell) arrives at Miss Farnsworth’s Seminary for Young Ladies in Virginia, he disrupts the complacent prudishness of Martha Farnsworth (Nicole Kidman) and her five students. He charms them. He also encourages Farnsworth, a devout Christian, to center her own gaze and desires. It’s a period movie that’s relevant, even as a remake.

7. The Big Sick

Director: Michael Showalter
{ Amazon Studios/Lionsgate }
Release Date: June 23, 2017

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You’ve never seen a romantic comedy like this. The Big Sick explores cultural differences in romances by using the real relationship of Kumail Nanjiani and Emily Gordon. Kumail’s parents would prefer for him to date a Muslim woman, but Emily (Zoe Kazan) becomes their focus when she’s put in a medically-induced coma. The Big Sick is in the vein of other Judd Apatow-produced rom-coms, including Knocked Up and The 40 Year Old Virgin, but considers culture in a way few other romantic comedies have.

8. Spider-Man: Homecoming

Director: Jon Watts
{ Sony Pictures }
Release Date: July 7, 2017

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There have so many iterations of Spider-Man that it’s impossible to keep up. However, Spider-Man: Homecoming seems to offer more than the previous films. It continues Marvel’s movie universe by taking place a few months removed from the ending of Captain America: Civil War. Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) is part of this continuation: Iron Man mentors Peter Parker (Tom Holland) as he attempts to balance Spider-Man with his life as a high school student in Queens, New York. There’s also his love interest, Michelle, who is played by Zendaya—the first Black female lead in the Spider-Man franchise. When supervillain Vulture begins threatening the city, Peter’s life unravels.

9. Girls Trip

Director: Malcolm D. Lee
{ Universal Pictures }
Release Date: July 21, 2017

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Long ago, Black women’s friendships were prevalent on television and in movies. Living Single, The Game, Girlfriends, and The Best Man were just a few of the many images Black women had of friendships. Girls Trip promises to offer that—and then some. It’s exactly as it sounds: Close friends Ryan (Regina Hall), Sasha (Queen Latifah), Lisa (Jada Pinkett Smith), and Dina (Tiffany Haddish) reunite for a trip to the Essence Music Festival in New Orleans. The hijinks ensue from there. Black women deserve our own Bridesmaids and The Hangover. Girls Trip might deliver that.

10. Ingrid Goes West

Director: Matt Spicer
{ Neon }
Release Date: August 11, 2017

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Ingrid Goes West is commentary about obsession, social media, and the deception of the internet. Ingrid Thorburn (Aubrey Plaza) decides to move to Los Angeles to pursue a friendship with Taylor Sloane (Elizabeth Olsen), a social media influencer. Ingrid is obsessed with the perceived perfection of Taylor’s life, but doesn’t realize that what’s posted on social media doesn’t always mirror a person’s actual life. It’s a scary film that captures how quickly line blurs between reality and presentation.

11. Detroit

Director: Kathryn Bigelow
{ Annapurna Pictures }
Release Date: August 4, 2017

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Kathryn Bigelow’s follow-up to Zero Dark Thirty is another period piece. This time, she’s chronicling Detroit in 1967 after a racial incident at the Algiers Motel leads to a massive riot that forever transformed the Motor City. As uprisings in response to police violence continue, Detroit offers a historical timeline for the unrest.

12. Valerian and the City of a Thousand Plans

Director: Luc Besson
{ STX Entertainment }
Release Date: July 21, 2017

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Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets is based on the popular European comic that never quite reached the United States. However, it’s definitely one of those summer blockbusters that studios love to produce. The movie is set in Alpha, a New York-esque metropolis where the entire universe converges to learn each other’s culture, in the 28th century. Valerian (Dane DeHaan) and Laureline (Cara Delevingne) are operatives who must save the world after discovering a mysterious force that’s threatening the safety of Alpha—and the entire world.

13. I Am Evidence

Director: Trish Adlesic and Geeta Gandbhir
{ HBO Documentaries }

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America has a cultural disregard for rape. It’s seen in the massive backlog of rape kits in police departments across the country. I Am Evidence, a HBO documentary that premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival, delves into the impact of untested rape kits on victims and the criminal justice process. Mariska Hargitay is one of the documentary’s producers.

14. Patti Cake$

Director: Geremy Jasper
{ Fox Searchlight Pictures }
Release Date: July 7, 2017

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The audience at the Cannes film festival gave Patti Cake$ a standing ovation for good reason: It tells an unconventional story about an underdog. The movie follows Patricia Dombrowski (Danielle McDonald), a fat white rapper who uses the moniker Patti Cake$. She’s been raised on MTV, and wants to create videos that shape culture. Above all else, Patti Cake$ is a coming-of-age rap story.

15. Lady Macbeth

Director: William Oldroyd
{ Altitude Film Distribution }
Release Date: July 14, 2017

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Lady Macbeth is based on Nikolai Leskov’s iconic book, Lady Macbeth of the Mtsensk District. Lady Macbeth is a tantalizing thriller that follows Katherine (Florence Pugh), a young woman forced to marry wealthy mine owner Alexander (Paul Hilton) in 19th century England. She’s imprisoned in their estate, forbidden from leaving. That’s when she begins an affair with their worker Sebastian (Cosmo Jarvis). From there, Lady Macbeth becomes a rollercoaster worth watching.

by Evette Dionne
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Evette Dionne is Bitch Media’s editor-in-chief. She’s all about Beyoncé, Black women, and dope TV shows and books. You can follow her on Twitter.

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