August 1st - 3rd-
Providing some counter programming to Guardians will be the James Brown biopic Get on Up. Oscar season doesn't get into full swing until around October, but August is the month where we usually start to see early contenders and Get on Up has been thought of as the movie that will be this year's contender from August. If you haven't heard the name Chadwick Boseman, now would be the time to start paying attention. Last year he starred as Jackie Robinson in the movie 42, so he's pretty good at these biopic roles. The very early word is that Boseman will at least be in the conversation when it comes to the best actor nominations from this year. Back in 2011, The Help took advantage of an August release date to get both critical and financial success that led to four Oscar nominations and one win. Get on Up is from the same director as The Help, so it will look to follow in its shoes.
Finally, the movie A Most Wanted Man opened up the weekend before, but will be getting a nationwide expansion this week. A Most Wanted Man is based off the book of the same title and is about a Chechen Muslim immigrant to Hamburg who gets caught up in the war on terror. The huge draw here is that this movie stars the late Phillip Seymour Hoffman. No this isn't his last movie as he still has the last two Hunger Games movies that he'll be in, but fans of the actor are bound to eventually show up to this to watch him in his last movie as a lead actor.
August 8th - 10th-
We've already had a couple food-related movies this year with The Lunchbox and Chef, but we will be getting a third this weekend via The Hundred-Foot Journey. This movie is about an Indian family who moves to France and sets up a restaurant right across the street from another popular French restaurant owned by Madame Mallory, who is played by Helen Mirren. Very early word is that Helen Mirren could be a potential Oscar nominee for her role in this movie, but it's obviously too early to tell. Considering the neglect towards the family audience this summer, the PG rating for this movie could pique the interest families. Also going for the movie is the fact that it's produced by Steven Spielberg and Oprah Winfrey, among others.
Next up is disaster movie Into the Storm. Advertising for this movie has sold this as a movie that tries to show audiences what it is like to get caught in a tornado. Immediately what comes to mind is the 1996 movie Twister and thus it remains to be seen if audiences will be interested in what may seem like a rehashing of that movie. In order to separate itself, filmmakers have done this movie in found-footage style, which may not turn out for the better. Found-footage movies have done very well in the past, but it seems like the genre has worn off on audiences. One evidence of this is last month's Earth to Echo which was able to gain pretty no traction. In a crowded month, Into the Storm could be looked over by audiences.
Last off for this weekend is Step Up All In. This is the fifth installment in the Step Up franchise, each coming out in two year increments since 2006. Step Up All In brings in several dancers from the previous movies for one big dance-off movie. The first Step Up did good business financially and while the sequels haven't done poorly, each one has declined in in grosses, so it's not likely that this one is anything special, although Step Up fans are still bound to show up.
August 15th - 17th-
Also coming to theaters this weekend is the movie adaption of the popular Lois Lowry novel The Giver. Ever since this was announced, fans of the book became excited because this seems like a novel that would work very well as a movie. However, excitement was diminished significantly at the reveal of the first trailer. Fans became upset that it seemed their book wouldn't be done right on the big screen. The next trailer healed some wounds, but not all. Now The Giver is stuck in a tough spot. It's trying to be the next big dystopian movie and thus hopes to gain some leftover summer movie excitement. At the same time, it's hoping that it can get some awards recognition by being released near Oscar season and heavily advertising the fact that it includes Oscar-winners Meryl Streep and Jeff Bridges. Unfortunately it may have shot itself in the foot with the marketing and thus it may end up getting lost in August and become the next failed dystopian movie.
Next up is the buddy comedy movie Let's Be Cops. So far this year was very good to both of the other buddy comedies that came out, that being Ride Along and 22 Jump Street. Also, in the last several years the summer season has been very good to R-rated comedies and this summer has been no different, minus a few exceptions. Last August saw We're the Millers break out and wind up as the biggest movie of the month. With the loaded August schedule, that definitely won't be the case here, but there is a good chance this does fairly well and supports what should be a fairly strong month. Advertisements has promised plenty of laughs for audiences, which is of course is the key for success.
August 22nd - 24th-
Joining A Dame to Kill For will be the film adaption of If I Stay. This is based off the popular young-adult novel written by Gayle Forman. In this story, 17-year-old Mia Hall gets in a car crash with her family, putting her in a coma. Mia has an out-of-body experience where she watches the doctors treat her and she is thus left with a big decision: does she decide to wake up and live a life that would be much harder than before or does she slip away and die? This isn't a Christian drama, but it was advertised in front all the big Christian movies that came out earlier this year and the life or death premise of the movie could be one that these audiences could buy into. The movie stars 17-year-old Chloe Grace Moretz as the title character of Mia, who has certainly had quite the career already for a 17-year-old as she has starred in movies such as the Kick-A-- movies as well as others like Let Me In, Hugo, and the Carrie remake.
The final movie for this weekend is the sports drama When the Game Stands Tall. This movie is based on the true story of a high school football team that owned a record 151 game winning streak. The drama in the movie centers on what happens to the team and the overall city when the winning streak is finally broken. Thus everyone has to learn how to pick themselves back up and move forward. Sports movies usually have a limited ceiling financially and the fact that this is being released in the dead zone that starts in late August isn't a good sign. Also, this year hasn't been good to the two sports movies that have already came out as Draft Day and Million Dollar Arm both opened to around $10 million. However, if it ends up with good reviews, break-out sports movies do happen and the fact that this summer has been extremely lacking in family-friendly movies could play out in its favor. Jim Cavaziel, who played Jesus in The Passion of the Christ is the big name in this one as he plays legendary head coach Bob Ladouceur.
August 29th - September 1st-
Also most likely set to fail on this weekend is As Above/So Below. This movie is a horror thriller set around two archaeologists searching for a lost treasure in the catacombs of Paris. This movie is directed by John Erik Dowdle, whose only other work is Devil and Quarantine, both of which opened in the low teen millions and ended around $30 million. That seems like a fair price tag to put on this one as well. No reason to believe it will be any higher.