We spend most of the summer soaking up the sun on beaches, or visiting amusement parks, or just enjoying nature. But the cool darkness of a theater offers not just a way to beat the heat but some of the biggest movies released every year. Regardless of genres, there's plenty to keep you glued to your seat with popcorn in hand.
The Avengers—May 4
Easily the most anticipated movie of the year kicked off the season by packing it with superpowers. Chronicling the birth of the Avengers, Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) assembles Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.), Captain America (Chris Evans), the Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson), Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner), the Hulk (Mark Ruffalo), and Thor (Chris Hemsworth) to stop Loki's (Tom Hiddleston) intergalactic army from attacking Earth.
Men in Black III—May 25
Men in Black is back with a vengeance. Agent J (Will Smith) travels back in time on a mission to save his friend, the young Agent K (Josh Brolin), from an alien assassination and changing the course of history, the agency, the Earth, and humanity before it's too late. The film features a slew of cameos, from Lady Gaga, Nicole Scherzinger, and Justin Bieber, to name a few.
Meet Disney's newest, boldest princess out there, Merida (voiced by Kelly McDonald). It's set in a mythical age in Scotland, where she strives to make her own path in life. After defying royal traditions and making a poor choice, Merida accidentally unleashes danger, so she must use her superior archery skills to set things right.
The Amazing Spider-Man—July 3
Don't count this reboot out! Peter Parker (Andrew Garfield) may be on the normal teenage mission of finding himself and love with his first crush, Gwen Stacy (Emma Stone). But after finding his father's mysterious briefcase, he questions how his parents disappeared when he was younger, following a path to Oscorp and his father's former partner, Dr. Curt Connors (Rhys Ifans). After gaining his powers, he must forge his way to become a hero and stop Connor's evil alter ego, the Lizard.
The Dark Knight Rises—July 20
The final chapter in Christopher Nolan's explosive trilogy comes to a close eight years after Batman (Christian Bale) took the fall for Two Face's crimes. A new juiced-up terrorist, Bane (Tom Hardy), plans to destroy the city with the help of Catwoman (Anne Hathaway) if Batman doesn't intervene and help Jim Gordon (Gary Oldman) and the rest of the Gotham City Police Department stop him.
The Campaign—August 10
With an action-packed cinematic season, we'll all be in need of a little comic relief. Join North Carolina congressional incumbent Cam Brady (Will Ferrell) as he jumps on the campaign trail to retain his seat against challenger Marty Huggins (Zach Galifianakis). Expect a fierce fight between equally matched opponents, with some mudslinging, snafus, and a scandal or two in the race to win.