2011 Summer Movie Pool Final Report | Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part II | Transformers: Dark of the Moon | The Hangover 2

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2011 Summer Movie Pool Final Report

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part II
Transformers: Dark of the Moon
The Hangover 2
Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides
Cars 2
Rise of the Planet of the Apes
Captain America: The First Avenger
The Help
Kung Fu Panda 2
X-Men: First Class
The Smurfs
Super 8
Horrible Bosses
Green Lantern
Bad Teacher
Cowboys and Aliens
Crazy, Stupid, Love
Mr. Poppers's Penguins
Friends with Benefits
Final Destination 5
Spy Kids:  All the Time in the World
Jumping the Broom
The Change-Up
Shark Night 3D
Glee: The 3D Concert Movie
Remember when the 2011 Summer Movie Season started with two wedding comedies that weren't Bridesmaids? Yeah, me neither. Something sure jumped that borrowed broom.

Without even trying, this summer will be remembered as the summer of super hero movies, so it's only fitting that not a single one made the Top Five. If the same is said next summer after The Avengers, Dark Knight Rises, and The Amazing Spider-Man have come out, studio execs will be trading in their executive bathroom keys for Redbox stock boy outfits.

Perhaps this should just be remembered as the summer with a lot of "OK" films. 18 films from this season will have crossed the $100 million mark by the time all is said and done. That's almost one for every week in the pool! Lady Gaga hasn't even had that many costume changes this summer! Sure, we can whine how only four of those went above the $200 million range, but maybe we should just be happy that we had so many films out there people actually wanted to see. Well, except for Glee Live! 3D, that is.

Let's wrap-up this season with a recap of what we've left behind.

THE PRETENDERS (films that never had a chance):

- Jumping the Broom sank like a mop.

- Something Borrowed was just Something Blue

- They didn't even call for a priest for Priest

- Mr. Popper's Penguins proved that penguins can't fly but Jim Carrey can flop.

- Tom Hanks fell down and broke his Larry Crowne.

- Kevin James may be the King of Queens but he's the Jester of Zookeeper.

- When you have these kinds of Friends With Benefits, who needs enemies.

- Crazy, Stupid, Love was more like Quirky, Ditzy, Liked.

- I can't top what I wrote before, The Change-Up was more like The Sinker.

- Final Destination 5 wasn't final or a destination.

- 30 Minutes or Less describes how fast this flick will end-up on DVD.

- Conan The Barbarian might well have been named Conan on TBS. No one seems to care anymore.

- What do they call it when you remake a film no one even remembers? A Fright Night.

- Thankfully, we found out the Spy Kids don't have All The Time In The World.

- Pretty sure the 3D in Shark Night was because it earned more than one D grade. It deserved three.

THE NOT READY FOR PRIME TIME PLAYERS (films that didn't quite deliver):

- X-Men: First Class was more like second class. Almost $100 million less than the last X-Men film!

- Super 8 was more like a 7 and nowhere close to a 10. Not quite the Inception people thought it could be.

- Pretty sure the Green Lantern franchise is being called the Gangrene Lantern at Warner Bros. these days. They're just going to cut it off and pretend it never even happened.

- Bad Teacher did more good for Cameron Diaz than any other film has for her in quite awhile. I mean, remember The Box. On second thought, please don't. It's better off forgotten.
- I guess Horrible Bosses was a shorter title then Unsympathetic People Who Make Me Feel Awkward Bosses.

- Cowboys & Aliens wasn't just from the director of Iron Man, it was also from eight different writers who couldn't figure out sarsaparilla from story line.

- The Smurfs showed that Katy Perry could do something even worse than that crappy E.T. song this summer: be the voice of Smurfette. Smurfity, smurf smurf smurf, indeed.

THE CONTENDERS (films that almost made the Top Five):

- Thor hung around for awhile, but just like my mullet in the late 80's/early 90's, it couldn't stay forever.

- Bridesmaids actually did turn into the bride of the season. No film exceeded expectations as much as this one. As for star Kristin Wiig, it made us all forget about MacGrubber, Paul, and Whip It. Wait, what were those again?

- Kung Fu Panda 2 showed it's not as much fun when the Panda actually does know Kung Fu. Hadn't they seen what happened after Neo actually realized he was The One?

- Captain America's biggest enemy wasn't the Red Skull, it was that goofy song-and-dance number. To survive that and still make a decent movie was truly heroic.

- Rise of the Planet of the Apes rose to the challenge of actually getting people to care about this franchise again. I hope the next one's called Still Not Cooked Yet Planet of the Apes.

- The Help (along with Rise of the P of the A) showed that as long as you make a pretty good movie and release it when there's absolute garbage around it, you should be able to do ok. Well done, people!


#5. Cars 2 - $189.2 million
The Pixar machine may have made their first low octane movie, yet it will still blow away the critically acclaimed Wall-E, Up, and Ratatooie in the merchandise department. Sometimes you've just got a make a buck, but please, don't do it again for another 16 years!

#4. Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides - $240.8 million
I saw one critic write that they'd like Johnny Depp to go back to being a side character in the Pirate series instead of the main character. What?! Most people thought the blahness of Orlando Bloom and Keira Knightly was the problem in the last two movies? Who the heck is supposed to star in this series?! Maybe this is the franchise we need to get Paul Walker and Vin Disel involved in.

#3. The Hangover Part II - $254.4 million
Is it second verse, same as the first or more like they took a Hot Tub Time Machine to make the same movie over again with just about the same results? Regardless, it was definitely the fast food meal of the season. It may not have been great, but it helped you get to your next meal.

#2. Transformers: Dark of the Moon - $350 million
You know how sometimes film geeks have very strong opinions about pointless things? Pointless doesn't begin to describe "the future" of this franchise. With Michael Bay saying he's done, do they find a new director and keep going with the Shia storyline or do they reboot the whole thing and start over. I'm pretty sure whatever they decide, no one will be able to tell the difference.

#1. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 - $375.6
Talk about a franchise in desperate need of rebooting. It's been 10 years since the first one. Just start it up all over again for the next gen. Who's going to mind?! Well, like Vanessa Williams, they saved the best for last (only she saved hers for Ugly Betty) and finished with the highest grossing Harry Potter film of all-time. Well done to all and to all a good night.

by Matt Neuenburg on 09/05/2011

Movies Mentioned in this Post: Bad Teacher, Bridesmaids, Captain America: The First Avenger, Cars 2, Cowboys and Aliens, Crazy, Stupid, Love, Final Destination 5, Friends with Benefits, Glee: The 3D Concert Movie, Green Lantern, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part II, Horrible Bosses, Jumping the Broom, Kung Fu Panda 2, Mr. Poppers's Penguins, Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, Rise of the Planet of the Apes, Shark Night 3D, Spy Kids: All the Time in the World, Super 8, The Change-Up, The Hangover 2, The Help, The Smurfs, Thor, Transformers: Dark of the Moon, X-Men: First Class, Zookeeper
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