Kids may be gearing up to head back to school but the box office boom doesn’t stop in August. In fact, August has proven to be a coveted calendar spot in recent years, with huge opening weekends for movies like Suicide Squad (2016) and Guardians of the Galaxy (2014). This year should be no exception given the blockbusters on the horizon.
Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs and Shaw will punch its way onto the wonderfully crowded movie theater marquee on August 2, joining lingering critical and commercial smashes like the Avengers: Endgame palette cleanser Spider-Man: Far From Home and Disney/Pixar’s Toy Story 4 and this week’s loud-roaring arrival, The Lion King.
We know you’ll want to see as many of next month’s movies as you can (and if you’re like us, some of them more than once!), but don’t feel overwhelmed! We’ve got you covered. Not only have we assembled this handy list of August’s Must See Movies, but we’ve got all the details on the incredible members-only community, Movie Club.
What makes Movie Club incredible? For ten bucks or less (depending on where you live), Movie Club at Cinemark gets you one movie ticket, 20 percent off all concessions, and the chance to grab two tickets per transaction at the Movie Club price of $8.99 or $9.99, without any online fees. Movie Club members enjoy those special prices all month long. Plus, if you don’t use your first ticket during that month (which seems crazy, but hey, things happen!), the ticket rolls over to the next month.
Best of all, our friends at Cinemark are offering a FREE month-long trial membership. With Movie Club, there’s no excuse to miss any of next month’s must-see movies.
Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw (Aug 2)
Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and Jason Statham burst out of the crowded ensemble of the Fast & Furious series with the muscular franchise’s first spinoff, Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw, pitting their nearly superhuman characters (who first traded blows in 2015’s Furious 7) against an actual superhuman villain played by Idris Elba.
Early Twitter reactions from critics who attended the premiere were pretty positive, with high praise for the two stars’ charisma and chemistry and the adrenaline ride we’ve come to expect from the franchise, particularly since it swerved from the street racing setup into increasingly over-the-top set pieces. No surprise there, given that none other than David Leitch was drafted to direct this beast. Leitch is the director behind Charlize Theron’s Atomic Blonde (2017) and Fox/Marvel’s Deadpool 2 (2018).
He began his career as a stunt performer and stunt coordinator, doubling several times for Brad Pitt and Jean-Claude Van Damme. ‘Though he isn’t credited, Leitch co-directed John Wick (2014) with his action design company partner Chad Stahelski. Leitch previously directed Statham in the 2011 action vehicle Mechanic.
Vanessa Kirby, Eiza Gonzalez, Johnson’s fellow pro wrestler turned actor Roman Reigns, and Dame Helen Mirren round out the Hobbs & Shaw cast.
Them That Follow (Aug 2)
It may seem unwise to try to follow Hobbs & Shaw, but Them That Follow will offer a bit of moody counter programming against its splashy popcorn competition. The feature film debut from writer/director duo Britt Poulton and Dan Madison Savage premiered at the Sundance Film Festival and counts actor Gerard Butler among its producers.
Them That Follow is a dramatic meditation on religious fanaticism, set within a snake-handling church community in Appalachia. It stars Olivia Colman of Netflix’s The Crown (seen most recently as a love-to-hate-her step-parent in critical darling comedy series Fleabag), Kaitlyn Dever (Booksmart), Alice Englert (Beautiful Creatures), and standup comedian Jim Gaffigan. Them That Follow also features the silver-tongued Walton Goggins, one of Movieweb’s favorite actors, best known for roles big and small in Quentin Tarantino’s The Hateful Eight (2015), Marvel’s Ant-Man and The Wasp (2018) and beloved FX television dramas The Shield, Justified, and Sons Of Anarchy.
Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark (Aug 9)
The Scary Stories books, written by Alvin Schwartz and illustrated by Stephen Gammell, collect unconnected short stories of the horror variety steeped in folklore and urban legend. Guillermo del Toro is such a big fan of the popular page-turning book series Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark that he actually owns several of the original illustrations, so naturally, his fingerprints are all over August’s cinematic adaptation.
Norwegian filmmaker André Øvredal (Trollhunter) directs the big screen adaptation, which brings together a few Scary Stories into a single narrative, rather than an anthology. Del Toro served as producer for what he and Øvredal describe as an “Amblin-esque” thriller made in the spirit of Steven Spielberg classics and Stephen King adaptations like Stand by Me and The Stand. The movie centers on a group of kids in 1960s smalltown America, led by a girl named Stella (Zoe Colletti), who discover a magical book that spookily writes itself. While Scary Stories fits squarely in the horror genre, the filmmakers have stressed that the PG-13 tale is aimed at Young Adults.
The Kitchen (Aug 9)
The Kitchen may be based on a comic book but it’s a decidedly R-Rated affair. The action dramedy is based on the series from DC Entertainment’s recently shuttered Vertigo imprint. Vertigo worked outside the Comics Code to deliver dark and Eisner award-winning fare, much of it adapted for film and television already, like Preacher, Constantine, The Sandman, A History of Violence, iZombie, and V for Vendetta.
Melissa McCarthy (The Heat), Tiffany Hadish (Girls Trip), and Elisabeth Moss (The Handmaid’s Tale) star as three wives of Irish mob bosses who take over the crime business in New York City’s Hell’s Kitchen after their husbands are all arrested.
Screenwriter Andrea Berloff (Straight Outta Compton) makes her directorial debut.
Dora and the Lost City of Gold (Aug 9)
Nickelodeon’s Dora The Explorer gets the live action treatment in August with Isabela Moner (Transformers: The Last Night) in the title role. Paramount no doubt hopes to follow in the footsteps of recent live-action adaptation of beloved children’s animation like Aladdin and Beauty and the Beast. Given the selection of director James Dobin (The Muppets), who helped create Flight of the Conchords and the characters of Ali G and Borat, there could be enough sly humor to keep adults interested as well.
Michael Peña (Ant-Man) and Eva Longoria (TV’s Desperate Housewives) play Dora’s parents. Veteran character actor Danny Trejo provides the voice of Boots the Monkey.
The Art of Racing in the Rain (Aug 9)
It’s a dog’s life for Kevin Costner who voices the canine driving the story of The Art of Racing in the Rain, from the 2008 novel of the same name. Simon Curtis (My Week with Marilyn) directs Milo Ventimiglia (TV’s This is Us) and Amanda Seyried (Mean Girls) in this dramedy, first setup at Universal before moving to Walt Disney and finally, Fox.
After the Wedding (Aug 9)
The English language remake of After the Wedding gender swaps the lead roles from the Oscar-nominated 2006 Danish original. “The female characters are the least interesting thing in the original version,” Variety wrote back in January, after the new version’s Sundance premiere. “Fortunately, that’s not at all true of the remake.”
After the Wedding stars Julianne Moore (Boogie Nights) and Michelle Williams (My Week With Marilyn), who the Variety review describes as “goes big” and “understated and devastating,” respectively. Moore’s character runs an orphanage seeking funding from a wealthy benefactor played by Williams, who unexpectedly invites her to a wedding, where each woman is confronted with mysteries from the past.
Moore’s husband, Bart Freundilch, directs.
The Peanut Butter Falcon (Aug 9)
The Peanut Butter Falcon earned a perfect Rotten Tomatoes score after its premiere earlier this year at South By Southwest. The dramedy follows a boy with down syndrome who runs away from home in hopes of becoming a professional wrestler.
The Peanut Butter Falcon stars Shia LaBeouf (Transformers) and Dakota Johnson (50 Shades of Grey), with supporting roles from John Hawkes (Deadwood), Jon Bernthal (Marvel’s The Punisher series), and Thomas Haden Church (Spider-Man 3). There are also appearances from real life pro-wrestlers Mick Foley and Jake Roberts.
The Angry Birds Movie 2 (Aug 14)
A huge nestful of comedic talent swoops in for the second installment of the Angry Birds series, based on the popular video game. The computer animated kid-friendly farce features the voices of Jason Sudeikis (Booksmart), Danny McBride (This is the End), Bill Hader (HBO’s Barry), Peter Dinklage (Avengers: Infinity War, Game of Thrones), Josh Gad (Frozen), Leslie Jones (Ghostbusters), Awkwafina (Crazy Rich Asians), and Tiffany Haddish, among others. The Angry Birds Movie made over $350 million worldwide in 2016.
The Angry Birds Movie 2 marks the feature directorial debut of Thurop Van Orman, who has written for TV shows like Adventure Time and The Powerpuff Girls.
Where’d You Go, Bernadette (Aug 16)
Richard Linklater, the filmmaker responsible for Slacker, Dazed and Confused, and 2014 award-season sensation Boyhood (among other classics) returns with Where’d You Go, Bernadette, a mystery dramedy based on the 2012 novel by Maria Semple.
Newcomer Emma Nelson beat 500 other hopefuls to land the role of Bee, a young girl searching for her missing reclusive mother played by Cate Blanchett (Thor: Ragnarok).
“Several things ultimately swayed me toward Emma,” Linklater told Deadline. “In addition to her intelligence and utter natural quality, I was most impressed with her composure, confidence, and unflappability. Even ‘though this was her first movie role, she was unintimidated.”
Billy Crudup (Watchmen) and Kristen Wiig (Bridesmaids) also star.
Playmobil: The Movie (Aug 16)
Remember when the idea of a movie based on Danish building toy Lego seemed crazy? Well, German building toy Playmobil is looking to get in on the box-office action with Playmobil: The Movie. The CG/live-action hybrid boasts a reported $75 million budget and was directed by Lino DiSalvo, a longtime animator whose credits include Frozen. The comedy features the voices of Anya Taylor-Joy (The Witch), Gabriel Bateman (this year’s Child’s Play remake), Daniel Radcliffe (the Harry Potter series), singers Meghan Trainor and Adam Lambert, Saturday Night Live’s Keenan Thompson, and actor/standup comedian Jim Gaffigan, in his second August 2019 movie.
Angel Has Fallen (Aug 23)
First Olmypus, then London and now Angel. The third entry in the action franchise sees Secret Service agent Mike Banning (Gerard Butler) framed for an assasination attempt on the President, played by Morgan Freeman, whose character was Speaker of the House in 2013’s Olympus Has Fallen and Vice President in 2016’s London Has Fallen.
Butler is now a producer as well. Director Ric Roman Waugh has worked with A-list talent like Dwayne Johnson (2013’s Snitch) and Val Kilmer (2008’s Felon). He was a stunt performer in the 1980s and 1990s, working alongside action heroes like Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jean Claude Van Damme, Jet Li, and the late Brandon Lee.
My Spy (Aug 23)
Dave Bautista will be all over the multiplex considering the return (spoiler) of Drax the Destroyer in Avengers: Endgame, which is still in theaters, and this month’s R-rated action comedy flick Stuber, which pairs the athlete turned actor with Kumail Nanjiani (The Big Sick). My Spy is another action comedy but with a more kid-friendly bent.
The PG-13 My Spy sees Bautista’s CIA agent tasked surveilling the family of a troublesome 9 year old girl, played by newcomer Chloe Coleman. My Spy was directed by Peter Segal, who helmed the comedy classic Tommy Boy (1995) with the late Chris Farley and David Spade, as well as Adam Sandler’s Anger Management (2003), 50 First Dates (2004), and remake of The Longest Yard (2005), among other films.
Remember, Movie Club at Cinemark is FREE to try for a whole month so catching as many of August’s Must See Movies as you reasonably can should be no problem.