If God did not invent movies, would there even be a summer? Or, perhaps better put, if we simply stopped showing motion pictures during Sacramento’s most oppressive season*, would the thigh-chafing, triple-digit dog days materialize elsewhere—like, say, Poughkeepsie? Or is Poughkeepsie already underwater thanks to melting polar ice caps? We’d ask Al Gore, but he’s no longer returning our calls after that mean-spirited crack about his assorted chins. So we’ll just have to assume that summers and movies are inextricably connected, like Laurel and Hardy or Freebie and the Bean or the Bush administration and massive custardflucks (now available in the theater lobby). Since sequel-laden summer flicks are not going anywhere, a couple of us handicapped what Hollywood’s dumping in your local cineplex. And we mean dump! And dump on them we do!! That we did not actually see any of the movies we dumped on misses the point entirely. The point is that Jonathan Kiefer heroically bails out the SN&R summer movie guide with 10 local film events you should feel good about attending. By the way, if you haven’t heard, Kiefer has been promoted to arts editor as Becca Costello moves on, but not too far as she’ll continue filing her box-office smash Nothing Ever Happens columns. This week, Costello explains why she and her mom are crazy about the Swayze. Elsewhere, you’ll learn about the movement to close youth prisons, a downtown-Midtown home builder’s grand plans, and your kids, who will obviously grow up to be better citizens than you are. In d’ART, our third Second Saturday supplement (please keep up), the theme is visual arts and branding. And if last week’s cover story didn’t convince you that Congressman John Doolittle must resign, perhaps this week’s editorial will.

*some rogue weather experts contend non-summer seasons that pack apocalyptic flooding can at times be ever so slightly more oppressive than our hottest summer days. Slightly.