The domestic box office total for the first half of 2018 has reached $6 billion for the first time, thanks to the crackling performance of some of this summer's biggest hits. June certainly brought its share, with both Incredibles 2 and Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom quickly becoming two of the year's highest grossers. Ditto to Ocean's 8, the female-led sequel/reboot of the Ocean's 11 franchise. At this rate, the film — which stars Sandra Bullock, Cate Blanchett and Anne Hathaway — is all but guaranteed a sequel. Even less mainstream fare, like A24's harrowing horror film Hereditary, exceeded expectations, riding a wave of critical praise to some of the production house's best numbers thus far.
Of course, all of that is in the past. We're here to talk about what upcoming releases we're psyched to finally see on the big screen, and July is stacked with promising content. So let's get to it. Here are the 10 films we're looking forward to this month.
- This Page: The Equalizer 2, Teen Titans GO! To The Movies, and More
- Page 2: Ant-Man and the Wasp, Mission: Impossible - Fallout and More
10. Unfriended: Dark Web (Release Date: July 20)
Films like Unfriended, which wring their scares out of modern technology, don't usually work. Yet, despite mixed reviews, the 2015 original earned more than $64 million worldwide on a production budget of just $1 million. So it should serve as no surprise that Unfriended: Dark Web is looking to duplicate that stellar performance.
Directed by Stephen Susco (writer of films like The Grudge and Texas Chainsaw 3D), Unfriended: Dark Web was shot in secret last year and stars Colin Woodell, Rebecca Rittenhouse, Betty Gabriel and Andrew Lees. While it shares the found footage style and techno-horror angle of its predecessor, the film is a standalone, giving it the chance to shake off any lingering stigma from those who balked at the last one.
9. Don't Worry, He Won't Get Far on Foot (Release Date: July 13)
Gus Van Sant has long been the kind of fearless filmmaker to charge ahead with a project no matter what. Take, for instance, such provocative and Oscar-winning films as Good Will Hunting and Milk or the fact that this is the director who decided to helm a shot-for-shot remake of Psycho. Case in point, Van Sant is no stranger to controversy or awards attention, and his next film looks to court both.
Based on the memoir by cartoonist John Callahan, Don't Worry, He Won't Get Far on Foot stars Joaquin Phoenix as Callahan, who sustains a life-altering injury that leaves him wheelchair-bound. Jonah Hill, Rooney Mara and Jack Black round out the supporting cast. Given the mostly positive critical notices the film has received, Amazon Studios might have another success as it hits select theaters this month.
8. Eighth Grade (Release Date: July 13)
For years, Bo Burnham has cultivated a reputation as a stand-up comedian, and although he has written and directed some of his own comedy specials, Burnham fully steps into the role of filmmaker with his directorial feature debut, Eighth Grade, which has been gaining impressive momentum since making its debut at the Sundance Film Festival earlier this year.
The film stars Elsie Fisher as — you guessed it — an eighth-grade student struggling to finish the school year before moving into high school. Balancing that delicate line between comedy and drama, Eighth Grade — which arrives in limited release this month — takes a look at the awkwardness of adolescence and the pressure of feeling caught in the middle of a world you don't yet fully understand.
7. Teen Titans Go! To the Movies (Release Date: July 27)
Fans of the DC Extended Universe will have to wait until December's Aquaman to see the next chapter in that ongoing franchise. However, for those DC Comics fans who need something to tide them over, we have the film adaptation of the popular Cartoon Network series Teen Titans Go!, which looks to be just as self-referential and tongue-in-cheek as the way more adult-themed Deadpool 2.
The aptly titled Teen Titans Go! To the Movies follows the titular heroic team as they head to Hollywood in an effort to get a film made about their exploits. When supervillain Slade (voiced by Will Arnett) arrives on the scene, the Teen Titans see the chance to earn their own big-screen adaptation. In a summer filled with superhero fun, Teen Titans Go! To the Movies could be a real treat for families.
6. The Equalizer 2 (Release Date: July 20)
Despite a wildly successful career on the big screen, two-time Oscar winner Denzel Washington has never appeared in a sequel. Until now. Based on the TV series of the same name, The Equalizer rode a $55 million production budget to a $192 million worldwide cume. Now Washington and director Antoine Fuqua (Training Day) return with The Equalizer 2.
In the sequel, Robert McCall leaps into action to avenge the murder of a longtime friend, unleashing hell on the criminal underworld once again. Melissa Leo and Bill Pullman reprise their roles from the first film, and Pedro Pascal (Narcos, Kingsman: The Golden Circle) joins the cast. With the same core team involved, we expect The Equalizer 2 to be just as thrilling as its predecessor.
5. The First Purge (Release Date: July 4)
The premise behind the Purge series may be intriguing, but who knew the franchise would still be coming up with ways to tie its core concept in with social and political commentary four films in? The First Purge covers exactly what it sounds like, revealing the circumstances that led to the creation of one annual night of lawlessness to begin with.
From a business standpoint, these films continue to be profitable, and the fanbase is just as interested as ever. The previous entry, The Purge: Election Year, earned $119 million worldwide on a budget of only $10 million. The First Purge will likely be able to keep the franchise's momentum going strong, even without the direction of series creator James DeMonaco.
4. Sorry to Bother You (Release Date: July 6)
Lakeith Stanfield and Tessa Thompson star in Sorry to Bother You, the directorial debut for writer/director Boots Riley. Borrowing its name from the 2012 album released by Riley's hip hop group The Coup, the film is a fantasy/sci-fi comedy set in an alternate timeline that finds a telemarketer (Stanfield) stumbling on a secret key to success.
If that sounds like an off-the-wall concept, then you're starting to get why so many critics (including our own) have lavished such praise on Riley's film. Since its debut at the Sundance Film Festival, Sorry to Bother You has earned rapturous reviews for its imagination, heralding Riley as an exciting new voice in the movie business. The film will only be playing in select theaters; so be sure to hunt it down.
3. Skyscraper (Release Date: July 13)
Director Rawson Marshall Thurber and Dwayne Johnson must have hit it off while working on Central Intelligence because the duo is collaborating once again on this month's big original action spectacle, Skyscraper, which looks to draw inspiration from films like Die Hard and 1974 disaster film The Towering Inferno.
Johnson stars as a former FBI hostage negotiator who now works security for a Hong Kong skyscraper. But when terrorists attack, it's up to him to defend his home and his family. Neve Campbell, Chin Han, Roland Møller and Pablo Schreiber also star in the film. Will Skyscraper be another epic hit for Johnson? If Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle is any indication, it very well might be.
2. Ant-Man and the Wasp (Release Date: July 6)
Audiences are still reeling from the hard-hitting conclusion of Avengers: Infinity War, but the time for grieving our fallen heroes is over (for now). For fans of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, this moment belongs firmly to Ant-Man and the Wasp, director Peyton Reed's sequel to his own 2015 release Ant-Man.
Taking place more or less concurrently with Infinity War, Ant-Man and the Wasp sees Scott Lang (Paul Rudd) still grappling with the consequences of his actions in Captain America: Civil War. But when Hank Pym (Michael Douglas) and Hope Van Dyne (Evangeline Lilly) realize they need Scott's help to execute their latest plan, it's up to Ant-Man and the Wasp to save the day.
1. Mission: Impossible — Fallout (Release Date: July 27)
When Tom Cruise signed on to a film adaptation of 1960s TV series Mission: Impossible back in 1996, we're willing to bet no one involved (Cruise included) thought the franchise would still be going strong more than 20 years later. Yet, here we are, and Mission: Impossible — Fallout lands at the top of our list for July.
After all, not only has the series been on a creative hot streak since Brad Bird's Mission: Impossible — Ghost Protocol, but Christopher McQuarrie — director of 2015 hit Mission: Impossible — Rogue Nation — returns for this entry. In addition to most of that film's supporting cast (including standout Rebecca Ferguson), we'll finally get a chance to see Henry Cavill's infamous mustache in action.