This coming summer is packed with high-profile films, which are probably already on your radar, like Star Trek Beyond, Alice Through the Looking Glass, Jason Bourne, Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie, The BFG, and Ghostbusters, just to name a handful.
But there are also some lesser-known, high-quality movies worth checking out, too. You may not know about these films without doing a little digging, so we’ve done it for you: .
1. Pelé: Birth of a Legend (May 6)
Pelé wasn’t always known by just one name. The famous soccer player grew up as Edson Arantes do Nascimento. He came from a small village in Brazil, where he ran around shoeless. As seen in the above trailer, the kids with soccer uniforms, shin guards, and cleats teased him for going barefoot. But he showed them what was what; he didn’t need shoes to school them on the field. The film Pelé: Birth of a Legend is a story of inspiration and hope, featuring a young boy with raw, natural talent that did not go unnoticed.
2. The Professor: Tai Chi’s Journey West (May 6)
We all know what the martial arts are for the most part, at least from the perspective of a layman. But how did these combat moves, specifically Tai Chi, become so universally known? Master Cheng Man-Ching brought his teachings to the U.S. in the 1960s, which is documented in the film The Professor: Tai Chi’s Journey West. Professor Man-Ching was a poet, a painter, a calligrapher, a physician, and a martial artist. The documentary film outlines his teaching practice, which didn’t include a lot of words, but more movement and feelings.
3. Love & Friendship (May 13)
Some gossip is making its way through society in 1790s England, and Lady Susan Vernon (Kate Beckinsale) goes into hiding in the film Love and Friendship, based on Jane Austen‘s writings. Susan could stay behind closed doors and fall into spinsterhood, but instead she opts to go husband hunting for her daughter (Morfydd Clark) … and herself. You can also look for Stephen Fry, Chloë Sevigny and Doctor Who‘s Jemma Redgrave.
4. Dheepan (May 13)
Dheepan revolves around a husband, wife and their young daughter. But this is no typical family. The three met in a refugee camp, following the Sri Lankan Civil War. They are not related at all but act like a family as a cover, seeking asylum in France. In the trailer we hear the wife, portrayed by Kalieaswari Srinivasan, saying, “She is not my daughter. He is not my husband.”
5. Sunset Song (May 13)
Terence Davies‘ period film is set right before the start of World War I and is based on Lewis Grassic Gibbon‘s 1932 novel Sunset Song. The story follows a Scottish girl (Agyness Deyn) living on a farm in Aberdeen. Her life is pretty much work and waiting on her bedridden father (Peter Mullan). But she has her eyes open and knows there’s more out there. She meets a young man (Kevin Guthrie) and the two marry. But, of course, war changes everything.
6. Maggie’s Plan (May 20)
Maggie (Greta Gerwig) falls in love with a married man. She rationalizes her adulterous ways by telling her friends (Bill Hader, Maya Rudolph) and herself that the marriage has fallen apart and her new lover is trapped. But then Maggie falls out of love with him. Her plan is to get him back together with his wife (Julianne Moore). You can see if the wife is on board in the above trailer.
7. The Ones Below (May 27)
A young couple with a newborn baby befriend their downstairs neighbors in the suspense thriller The Ones Below. The women go shopping, hang out, and the couples get together for dinners, but then things take a turn, aka The Hand That Rocks the Cradle-style. It’s not clear if the downstairs neighbors are trying to steal their baby, or if the new mom is imagining everything. The film stars Clémence Poésy, David Morrissey, Stephen Campbell Moore, Laura Birn, and Deborah Findlay.
8. Presenting Princess Shaw (May 27)
At first glance of the above trailer, it’s like, “What am I watching? A YouTube clip?” Well, yes and no. Technically, yes it’s a YouTube clip of Samantha Montgomery talking into the camera, but that actual clip kicked off a string of events. Composer Ophir Kutiel saw Shaw on YouTube and put together a number of other clips to create this amazing piece of work:
The documentary Presenting Princess Shaw tells a kind of Cinderella story, with the before and after and all the wicked stuff in between.
9. De Palma (June 10)
Director Brian De Palma took a break from filmmaking and landed himself on the other side of the camera. You’ve definitely seen one of De Palma’s many critically acclaimed films, if not all, like Carrie, Carlito’s Way, or Mission Impossible. He entrusted fellow directors Noah Baumbach and Jake Paltrow to help tell his story in the documentary De Palma. It’s not a Hollywood tell-all, but De Palma gives us an honest look at what it’s like to make movies in Hollywood.
10. Last Cab to Darwin (June 10)
An Australian cab driver by the name of Rex (Michael Caton) is given three months to live. He drives himself to Darwin, Australia to meet with a right-to-die campaigner (Jacki Weaver). He also has the right to change his mind.
11. Right Now, Wrong Then (June 24)
Life is all about timing: being in the right place at the right time. Or, on the other hand, like the South Korean film, there’s Right Now, Wrong Then. The film is based on one day, when two people (Jay-yeong Jeong, Min-hee Kim) meet twice.
12. Eat That Question: Frank Zappa in His Own Words (June 24)
Frank Zappa is a music icon, but he’s also one funny guy, as seen in the first few seconds of the above clip. While we learn more about this “sonic avant-garde,” he also squashes a few myths in His Own Words. The documentary is made up entirely of interview footage with Zappa and his performances; there are no interviews from other people.
13. Captain Fantastic (July 8)
Viggo Mortensen portrays a dedicated father to his six children in the film Captain Fantastic. He loves his children, he provides for them and makes sure they receive an education, but it’s all done in the woods of the Pacific Northwest. His in-laws (Frank Langella, Steve Zahn) do not agree with this way of life, to put things lightly. Due to unfortunate circumstances, this superhero-like father (at least to his offspring) and his children leave the woods and face the big bad world.
14. Café Society (August 12)
Director Woody Allen‘s films typically receive some fanfare, but Café Society is a few months off, so we wanted to provide a head’s up. A young man (Jesse Eisenberg) seeks out his well-connected uncle (Steve Carell) in 1930s Hollywood. The young man discovers a completely different way of life, and he likes it.
15. Kubo and the Two Strings (August 19)
Kubo and the Two Strings is an animated tale of fantasy and adventure. Based in ancient Japan, Kubo (Art Parkinson) accidentally releases a vengeful spirit. Kubo’s fate is dependent on tracking down a magical suit of armor, once worn by his father. But, he’s not alone, he has Monkey (Charlize Theron) and Beetle (Matthew McConaughey) to help him find his way. Other stars lending their voices to the film include Rooney Mara, George Takei and Ralph Fiennes.
That’s not it!
In addition to the above, we’ve talked about a number of films on Anglo that will be coming out this summer. You can take a look back with the below links:
A Bigger Splash (May 6)
The Lobster (May 13)
Alice Through the Looking Glass (May 27)
Genius (June 10)
Now You See Me 2 (June 10)
Swiss Army Man (June 17)
Independence Day: Resurgence (June 24)
The BFG (July 1)
Ghostbusters (July 15)
Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie (July 22)
Star Trek Beyond (July 22)
Jason Bourne (July 29)
Suicide Squad (August 5)
The Founder (August 5)
This list of films can round out a lot of lazy summer days.
Which of these stand out to you most?