By Larry Ratliff
The grandkids are coming for a visit and you’d like to share the wonders of true cinematic joy by treating your favorite little ones to an afternoon at the movies.
There’s just one looming problem. Have you noticed what’s lighting up many of the screens at your local cineplex these days? If you answered violence to the Nth degree, F-bomb comedies or paranormal spookiness, you’re on the right track for the most part.
There’s good news in June, however, especially if the word “sequel” doesn’t spoil your cinematic party.
Dory, the cinema’s favorite Pacific Regal Blue Tang, is back with Ellen DeGeneres providing the voice for the lovable-yet-forgetful blue fish.
It may have taken 13 years for the Finding Nemo animated comic-adventure sequel to spawn, but Finding Dory, opening June 17, shows all the signs of being a real gem for fans of the original and for a new generation of wide-eyed movie fans.
The good news is that all the key elements are in place for repeat success. There’s DeGeneres as the title character. In this new adventure, it’s a year later and Dory suddenly remembers that she has a family and they may be looking for her. So off she goes, with her pals Marlin (Albert Brooks) and Nemo (Hayden Rolence, taking over from Alexander Gould) to find them. I can’t wait to see what Diane Keaton and Eugene Levy bring to Dory’s long-lost parents.
June is loaded with a trio of potential blockbuster sequels. In addition to Finding Dory, Independence Day, the 1996 space alien invasion actioner, gets a reboot 20 years after the original. Roland Emmerich returns to the director’s chair.
Don’t expect to see Will Smith in Independence Day: Resurgence, though, which opens June 24. The filmmakers have said in published reports that Smith is too expensive and too much of a distraction to recast. Bill Pullman will be back as fighter pilot U.S. president, Thomas J. Whitmore, however.
It seems the nations of Mother Earth have gotten together to protect the planet from invading aliens. Unfortunately, the unwelcome visitors from deep space have updated their invasion software as well.
And, to continue the “everything old is new again” theme, those kung-fu fighting perennial teenage turtles are back. They return to save the city from yet another potentially catastrophic threat in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows on June 3.