Let’s go to the movies

Escape the heat with these eight summer flick picks

<i>Toy Story 4</i>.

Toy Story 4.

Is there anything more synonymous with summer than movies? OK, outdoor activities such as water skiing and beach volleyball may come to mind first, but movies definitely fit in somewhere toward the middle of the list, especially if you’re looking to enjoy air conditioning and tasty snacks. If you’d rather relax in front of a big screen than soak up the sun, here are eight flicks to keep you cool.

Toy Story 4

Woody and the rest of the crew are back, and this time they’re met with the challenge of teaching Forky—a spork—what it means to be a toy. The product of an arts and crafts experiment, Forky asks, “Why am I alive?” before running off. Come for the colorful animation, stay for the existential crisis. (June 21).

Men in Black: International

It has been seven years since Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones last protected Earth from the scum of the universe. Now, Chris Hemsworth and Tessa Thompson are the new sharp-suited, shiny tech-toting agents tasked with resolving intergalactic threats. It’s a sci-fi buddy cop film that knows what it is, replete with small aliens and big guns. (June 14).


What if the Beatles never existed? What if you were the only one who remembered them? What if people thought you wrote their songs? Jack (Himesh Patel), a struggling musician, finds himself in this exact situation. Richard Curtis’ original screenplay has a solid comedic premise, and with Danny Boyle directing it’s sure to be a fun trip. (June 28).


Ari Aster follows up last year’s spine-chilling Hereditary with a full-on skeleton-chilling spiritual sequel. Dani (Florence Pugh) joins her boyfriend at a Swedish festival where peopIe “dress up” and perform “special ceremonies,” meaning they’re probably an evil cult. Aster describes it as “Wizard of Oz for perverts.” So there’s that. (July 3).

The Art of Self Defense

Everyone’s favorite Eisenberg (Jesse Eisenberg, of course) plays a young man who signs up for karate lessons after he’s attacked on the street. Writer-director Riley Stearns’ black comedy promises sharp insight into how toxic masculinity affects the ways men deal with trauma—basically what Fight Club should have been. (July 12).

The Farewell

Billi’s grandmother doesn’t know she’s dying of cancer. Her family insists on hiding the diagnosis from her to spare her the emotional pain. A moral quandary wrapped up in a family drama, the story is based on director Lulu Wang’s experience with her own grandmother and her struggle to say goodbye without actually saying goodbye. (July 12).

Dora and the Lost City of Gold

Nickelodeon’s live adaptation of the iconic children’s show looks like a wild Tomb Raider-esque adventure, complete with lush jungle life and hidden temple traps. Dora’s not a cartoon anymore, but she’s still an explorer, and she’s got a purple backpack full of flares to prove it. (Aug. 9).

Where’d You Go, Bernadette

Richard Linklater adapts Maria Semple’s book of the same name, about a mother and former architect who leaves her family to pursue her passion in Antarctica. More than that, this movie is about Cate Blanchett’s incredible ability to wear thick-rimmed sunglasses in cloudy weather. (Aug. 16).