We hope you've saved your pennies and gotten enough sunshine not to look translucent at the end of a month-long movie marathon, because May's film release lineup is nothing short of ridiculous. With Marvel's next limb of the Avengers monster taking flight (Thor), as well as returning franchises (The Hangover 2, Pirates of the Caribbean, Kung Fu Panda) and a left-field blast-fest of awesome (Hobo With a Shotgun), it's time to get used to a heavy infusion of popcorn in your diet this May!
Starring: Natalie Portman, Chris Hemsworth, Samuel L. Jackson, Anthony Hopkins
Directed By: Kenneth Branagh
Opening: May 6
The epic adventure Thor spans the Marvel Universe from present day Earth to the mystical realm of Asgard. At the center of the story is The Mighty Thor, a powerful but arrogant warrior whose reckless actions reignite an ancient war. As a result, Thor is banished to Earth where he is forced to live among humans. When the most dangerous villain of his world sends its darkest forces to invade Earth, Thor learns what it takes to be a true hero.
CraveOnline's Call: Epic to the tenth! Thor would be a must-see even without the bigger comic-franchise picture, but prepping for the ultimate Marvel team-up in the Avengers movie, we're covering all the bases. Can't wait!
Hobo With a Shotgun
Starring: Rutger Hauer, Molly Dunsworth, Brian Downey
Directed By: Jason Eisener
Opening: May 6
A train pulls into its final station and a Hobo hops from a freight car. He has dreams of a fresh life in a new city, but finds himself trapped in an urban hell instead. A city where criminals rule the streets, landlords evict single mothers in the middle of the night, and where the city's crime boss, The Drake, reigns supreme with his sadistic, homeless-killing sons, Slick & Ivan. Through the chaos, the Hobo comes across a shop window displaying a second hand lawn mower and a shotgun, and decides it's time to cut the grass, make the city beautiful and start a new way of life. But after witnessing the brutality that encompasses this city, he realizes the only way to make a difference in this place is with a gun in his hand and two shells in its chamber.
CraveOnline's Call: Gory, brutal, lo-fi and awesome, you have absolutely no excuse to skip out on Hobo With a Shotgun. And if you do… he will find you.
Starring: Mel Gibson, Anton Yelchin, Jodie Foster
Directed By: Jodie Foster
Opening: May 6
Plagued by his own demons, Walter Black was once a successful toy executive and family man who now suffers from depression. No matter what he tries, Walter can't seem to get himself back on track… until a beaver hand-puppet enters his life
CraveOnline's Call: We're going to have fun watching the press rounds for this one, as Mel jumps, dodges and fake-humbles himself enough to make Chris Brown look sincere and rehabilitated ("Today Show" meltdown nonwithstanding, of course). Many are going to have a hard time putting any more money in the pocket of this hate-rage fallen star, but stranger career revivals have happened.
Starring: Dax Shepard, Tom Arnold, David Koechner, Bradley Cooper
Directed By: David Palmer, Dax Shepard
Opening: May 13
In an attempt to reinvent his career, actor Dax Shepard makes the rash decision to abandon comedy in pursuit of his true dream: to become an internationally-renown martial arts star. Without any formal martial arts training, nor adequate funding for his ‘blockbuster’ action movie script, Dax enlists the help of his buddies including producer Nate Tuck and actor Tom Arnold. Together, they fight to realize Dax’s true passion while facing rejection at every turn. With maniacal conviction, Dax journeys on a bizarre path that becomes increasingly nonsensical and destructive, all at the expense and exploitation of his personal and professional relationships.
CraveOnline's Call: Is this real life? Thankfully, it appears the answer is no. So enjoy Dax Shepard calling in his contacts and favors to make a movie about making a movie, starring him as a kung-fu action hero. Call me crazy, but I can't wait for this.
Everything Must Go
Starring: Will Ferrell, Rebecca Hall, Laura Dern, Michael Pena
Directed By: Dan Rush
Opening: May 13
Adapted and directed by Dan Rush, and based on a short story by Raymond Carver, Everything Must Go tells the story of Nick Porter (Will Ferrell) a career salesman whose days of being on top are long gone. The same day Nick gets fired, for falling off the wagon one last time, he returns home to discover his wife has left him, changed the locks on their suburban home and dumped all his possessions out on the front yard. Faced with his life imploding, Nick puts it all on the line – or more properly, on the lawn – reluctantly holding a yard sale that becomes a unique strategy for survival.
CraveOnline's Call: We're still reeling from Will Ferrell's turn as the totally unlovable Deangelo Vicker on "The Office" last month, so it won't be a stretch to buy him on a down-on-his-luck straight character rather than the goofy buffoon we're so lovingly used to. The premise is a little thin, but we've got faith that Will's learned from Kicking & Screaming. We're there.
Starring: Paul Bettany, Cam Gigandet, Maggie Q, Karl Urban
Directed By: Scott Stewart
Opening: May 13
A warrior priest from the last Vampire War now lives in obscurity among the other downtrodden human inhabitants in walled-in dystopian cities ruled by the Church. When his niece is abducted by a murderous pack of vampires, the priest breaks his sacred vows to venture out on an obsessive quest to find her before they turn her into one of them. He is joined on his crusade by his niece's boyfriend, a trigger-fingered young wasteland sheriff, and a former warrior priestess who possesses otherworldly fighting skills.
CraveOnline's Call: This may look a bit like last year's Legion film, but Bettany's playing a different kind of death-defying hero against a new army of demonic monsters. Either way, good fun for the whole fam! Here's your over-the-top gore and violence fix for the month…
Starring: Kristen Wiig, Rose Byrne, Matt Lucas, Jon Hamm
Directed By: Paul Feig
Opening: May 13
This spring, producer Judd Apatow and director Paul Feig invite you to experience Bridesmaids. Annie, a maid of honor whose life unravels as she leads her best friend, Lillian, and a group of colorful bridesmaids on a wild ride down the road to matrimony. Annie's life is a mess. But when she finds out her lifetime best friend is engaged, she simply must serve as Lillian's maid of honor. Though lovelorn and broke, Annie bluffs her way through the expensive and bizarre rituals. With one chance to get it perfect, she'll show Lillian and her bridesmaids just how far you'll go for someone you love.
CraveOnline's Call: We were excited by the promise of a "Hangover for girls," particularly given Kristen Wiig's penchant for hysterically insane characters on SNL. But the trailer looks as bland and cheesy as a ripoff Hallmark card, and all hope was lost. Skip it.
Starring: Natalie Portman, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Rainn Wilson
Directed By: Spencer Susser
Opening: April 15
Loud music. Pornography. Burning shit to the ground. These are a few of Hesher’s favorite things. And they are what Hesher (Joseph Gordon Levitt) brings into the lives of TJ (Devin Brochu) and his father, Paul (Rainn Wilson) when he takes up residence in their garage uninvited.
Grief-stricken by the loss of TJ’s mother in a car accident, Paul can’t muster the strength to evict the strange squatter, and soon the long-haired, tattooed Hesher becomes a fixture in the household. Like a force of nature, Hesher’s anarchy shakes the family out of their grief and helps them embrace life once more.
CraveOnline's Call: A darkly funny tale of redemption through friendship takes a turn for the gripping. This is one of those films to make you take stock of the people in your life, and examine the truue value of some of the more reckless characters entering into it. This aint no filler flick – we've got quality goods with this one.
Starring: Val Kilmer, Kris Kristofferson, Hilary Duff
Directed By: Shane Dax Taylor
Opening: May 20
It’s been 40 years since E.F. Bloodworth (Kris Kristofferson) abandoned his loving wife and sons for a life on the road. Now at the end of the line, Bloodworth reappears, forced to reckon with the stale aftermath of his departure. With his ex-wife Julia (Frances Conroy) mentally destroyed, his three sons; Warren (Val Kilmer), Boyd (Dwight Yoakam) and Brady (W. Earl Brown) soured by years of anger, Bloodworth’s only solace is a budding relationship with Fleming, the grandson he never knew. But when Fleming meets Raven (Hilary Duff), the woman of his dreams, will Bloodworth’s presence force history to repeat itself?
CraveOnline's Call: Didn't this film come out last year under the title Crazy Heart? Almost… just replace Jeff Bridges with Kris Kristofferson, really. T. Bone Burnett produced the music, just as with Crazy Heart, but don't expect this to take off on any runaway success. It feels too close to a xeroxed premise to land any serious blows, and Kristofferson is long past the career fire that Bridges is enjoying a nice burst of these days.
The Hangover Part II
Starring: Bradley Cooper, Zach Galifianakis, Ed Helms, Justin Bartha
Directed By: Todd Phillips
Opening: May 26
In the follow-up to the record-breaking hit comedy The Hangover, Phil (Bradley Cooper), Stu (Ed Helms), Alan (Zach Galifianakis) and Doug (Justin Bartha) travel to exotic Thailand for Stu's wedding. After the unforgettable bachelor party in Las Vegas, Stu is taking no chances and has opted for a safe, subdued pre-wedding brunch. However, things don't always go as planned. What happens in Vegas may stay in Vegas, but what happens in Bangkok can't even be imagined.
CraveOnline's Call: It may be a terrible idea to throw a kneejerk-sounding sequel to the wolves while they're still breathlessly calling the first the funniest movie ever, but damned if we're not going to be first in line for it. Bangkok here we come!
Kung Fu Panda 2
Starring: Angelina Jolie, Seth Rogen, Jack Black, Dustin Hoffman
Directed By: Jennifer Yuh
Opening: May 26
In Kung Fu Panda 2, Po is now living his dream as The Dragon Warrior, protecting the Valley of Peace alongside his friends and fellow kung fu masters, The Furious Five. But Po's new life of awesomeness is threatened by the emergence of a formidable villain, who plans to use a secret, unstoppable weapon to conquer China and destroy kung fu. Po must look to his past and uncover the secrets of his mysterious origins; only then will he be able to unlock the strength he needs to succeed.
CraveOnline's Call: The obligatory monthly kids' movie looks quite clearly over the top, but the first was surprisingly enjoyable. We'll give it a shot – especially since that's the weekend the kid brother's coming to visit. Grab yours and come along.
The Tree of Life
Starring: Brad Pitt, Sean Penn, Joann Going
Directed By: Terrence Malick
Opening: May 27
From Terrence Malick, the acclaimed director of such classic films as Badlands, Days of Heaven and The Thin Red Line, The Tree of Life is the impressionistic story of a Midwestern family in the 1950's. The film follows the life journey of the eldest son, Jack, through the innocence of childhood to his disillusioned adult years as he tries to reconcile a complicated relationship with his father (Brad Pitt). Jack (played as an adult by Sean Penn) finds himself a lost soul in the modern world, seeking answers to the origins and meaning of life while questioning the existence of faith. Through Malick's signature imagery, we see how both brute nature and spiritual grace shape not only our lives as individuals and families, but all life.
CraveOnline's Call: We've been hearing the word "epic" used in association with this film since word first broke about the script; now, we're not sure what to think. Brad Pitt and Sean Penn in the same film is enticing, but being that they play father and son and won't likely share any screentime dulls the excitement a bit. Still, we can't help but be curious about this existentialist/spiritual journey.
Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides
Starring: Johnny Depp, Geoffrey Rush, Penelope Cruz, Ian McShane
Directed By: Rob Marshall
Opening: May 20
Produced by Jerry Bruckheimer and directed by Rob Marshall, “Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides” captures the fun, adventure and humor that ignited the hit franchise—this time in Disney Digital 3D™. Johnny Depp returns to his iconic role of Captain Jack Sparrow in an action-packed adventure. Crossing paths with the enigmatic Angelica (Penelope Cruz), he’s not sure if it’s love—or if she’s a ruthless con artist who’s using him to find the fabled Fountain of Youth. When she forces him aboard the “Queen Anne’s Revenge,” the ship of the legendary pirate Blackbeard (Ian McShane), Jack finds himself on an unexpected adventure in which he doesn’t know whom to fear more: Blackbeard or Angelica, with whom he shares a mysterious past. The international cast includes franchise vets Geoffrey Rush as the vengeful Captain Hector Barbossa and Kevin R. McNally as Captain Jack’s longtime comrade Joshamee Gibbs, plus Sam Claflin as a stalwart missionary and Astrid Berges-Frisbey as a mysterious mermaid.
CraveOnline's Call: Squeezing blood from a stone with a new supporting cast of characters, it's hard to drum up any more excitement for Captain Jack's next installment of escapades. There's only so much thrilling captivation you can pull from four movies' worth of adventure with a sea captain who looks more like Keith Richards by the minute and can't ever seem to hang on to his ship.