Saturday, April 20, 2013

Dazz's Nerdfest Handbook 2013: The Complete Summer Movie Guide for the Dork in Everyone

   If you go way back with this blog, you might remember that the first post I ever wrote was in honor of what I called ‘Summer of Nerd 2011’. It looked at the headlining movies of the summer in all of their superhero-making and robot-fighting and over-the-top-explosion-fest greatness. Each movie had a quick blurb and a ranking on the Nerd-o-meter (patent pending). It is an According to Dazz classic, if I say so myself, and for this summer, which probably features the most nerd-gasmic lineup of flicks in recent memory, I decided to pull a throwback move and dip into the greatest hits collection. So I present to you the shiny new edition of Dazz’s Nerdfest Handbook 2013 (In two parts, but that sounds bad and I did not want to put it in the title because I thought people would whine about it, ok?).
   Make sure your glasses are taped on tight and your pens are ready to take notes—this is going to be a good one, friends.

Ironman 3: I know Northwestern has another month and a half of classes when it comes out, but can I just have a dream, here? Sheesh.
   Weird thing I noticed—Ironman 3 is a parallel to Robert Downey Jr.’s career path. Ironman starts out strong with all the fame and glory and drugs and heroism and women-folk, then he goes a little too hard, gets a little too coke-y . . . sorry, that’s cocky, loses everything, and goes on a path of redemption to reclaim everything he loves. Bam. Send that to, fools. This will be another fun ride though, and with luck, the more serious tone will give Downey some chances to use his acting chops. What a way to start the summer.
   Nerd-o-meter: 8/10
   Release: May 3

The Great Gatsby: Inspiring a new generation of read—oh come on, who are we kidding?
   When I heard of this coming out last year, my first thought was that Leo should be Gatsby—and oh man, did they ever deliver. What you have to understand though, is that the rest of the cast is highly underrated. Carey Mulligan has always been high on my Celebrity Crush Power Rankings (yeah, in caps, and this is still going to be an article sometime soon, I just have to figure out how to not sound like a freaking pervert when I write it . . . not that I have tried and failed, in that respect . . . this parenthetical needs to end), and Tobey Maguire is a solid Nick. After all, he is not the hero, he is just there to tell you what is going on, and I do not want anything else out of my Tobey Maguire. This one has serious potential—it might finally be the Gatsby movie we are looking for.
   Nerd-o-meter: 6/10 (unless you are into the whole book thing—then it is bumped up to a seven)
   Release: May 10

Star Trek Into Darkness: Wait—is that like ‘Star Trek [pause], Into Darkness?’, or like a Star Trek straight-up into the darkness?
   I did not see the first one. There, ok? I said it. The posters look pretty badass though, and my good pal J.J. Abrams (I would have used Jay Jay, but he asked that I keep things professional on the blog—cool with me) has rarely steered us wrong. The Trekies should be excited though—the first one had great reception, and this one looks even more epic and explosion-y than the first reboot (and yeah, I am in a small phase where I add ‘y’ to things to make my own adjectives—sue me).
   Nerd-o-meter: 9/10
   Release: May 15

Fast and the Furious 6: You can tell they ran out of different ways to say ‘Fast and Furious’ so they just pulled a DGAF Friday and slapped the number up there.
   First two were pretty good, Tokyo drift was okay but it had the quarterback from the Friday Night Lights movie in it so thirteen-year-old Tyler was excited, the fourth one was crappy and I hear Fast Five was alright but I did not care enough to see it. Basically, when you run out of crazy vehicles to use and you start throwing around tanks, you should realize you have hit a wall in the writing department and it might be time to hang up a franchise, no matter how much money it makes or how many professional wrestlers you can wedge into the cast. Sorry Vinny Diesel, but if you ask Dazz, it is time to move on. You peaked early with this one.
   Nerd-o-meter: 5/10 (just because some people might just be there to see if the Rock is going to throw in a “People’s Elbow” in there, because at the sixth movie you can really expect anything, right?)
   Release: May 24

The Hangover: Part III: Goddammit they made me use a double-colon. Gah look at how bad that looks. I am so embarrassed.
   The first movie was some quality comedy—it had the right mix of shock humor and quotable lines and one memorable character. The second movie was the same movie as the first one, but without any of the quotable lines (BAM—pop quiz: quote a line from Hangover: Part II, you cannot do it, can you? See, told you) and an absolute butchering of Zachy G’s character—he went from loveably aloof to straight-up idiotic, and now we have to deal with a whole ‘nother movie of his “Wait—so I should drive the expensive speedboat onto land without stopping? Seems like something an overused cash-out character would do” shenanigans. No thank you. At least it has Señor Chang in it.
   Nerd-o-meter: 4/10 (I couldn’t even make a grammatically-correct heading—could this be any lamer?)
   Release: May 24

After Earth: Pursuit of Happyness 2—now they really are homeless . . . was that bad taste? That was bad taste.
   How do you tell a M. Night Shyamalan flick? Plot twist! How do you tell a super-crazy ultra-meta Shyamalan movie? There is a plot twist in the trailer. Now, I love me some Will and Jaylen Smith, but man if their combined talent is wasted on some oh-by-the-way-this-village-is-in-modern-day-and-there-has-inexplicably-been-no-planes-or-helicoptors-flying-overhead-for-the-last-20-years-esque-piece-of-garbage movie . . . I will be a little upset. Man, can you believe that The Sixth Sense came out fourteen years ago? Yeesh! And by the way, is there any confirmation that his middle name is actually Night? Is that a joke? Sorry, I am venting. Let me breathe. Ok, done.
   Nerd-o-meter: 7/10 (it is a sci-fi after all, but it has more points if you are into stupid half-assed endings—sorry, I said I was done. For real now)
   Release: June 7

This is the End: Ok, everyone be cool, but we have our first Emma Watson sighting. Let’s appreciate her for a second . . . wow. Currently at the top of the Celebrity Crush Power Rankings.
   Indeed, Miss Watson does indeed have a cameo in this comedy, along with pretty much every other actor you can think of—check out the trailer, pretty awesome, right? The one thing that worries me about this is that aside from all the guests, the main crowd of this one is pretty much the run-of-the-mill white comedy cast, except oh wait, we need a black guy? Let’s call Craig Robinson. Good to see James Franco in his natural habitat though—blazing it up, I mean.
   Nerd-o-meter: 8/10 (guys, Emma Watson)
   Release: June 12

Man of Steel: It makes every nerd a man of steel, if you know what I mean . . . yeah, someone’s going to send me a letter.
   I am calling it right now. This is 2013’s Inception, Dark Knight, what have you. All the pieces are in place. We have great writing, great casting, great action-oriented directing, Chris Nolan onboard too . . . this might be the Superman of our dreams, friends. Sure, the Supes is pitted against General Zod and not Lex, but who cares? If the trailer is any indication, we are going to have some absolutely exceptional dynamics with Superman’s foreignness to Earth, and Zod is the perfect villain to play off of that. We might even have out first really great look at Jor-El (It’s Russell Crowe!) and the fall of Krypton. This is Clark Kent like we have never seen him before, and man, I am pumped. Look at this. If it ends up flopping, at least it wins trailer of the whole freaking year, right? So dope. Gah. 
   Nerd-o-meter: 10/10 (seriously, look at all the references up there!)
   Release: June 14

The Bling Ring: Well I know why I’m going, thank you very much.
   Emma Watson as a lead actress for a solid . . . let’s look at the runtime here . . . 95 minutes. Do you even need anything else for me to sell you on this one? Ok, fine, jerk—she plays a badass chick who leads a band of other badass chicks in a plot to rob the homes of celebrities. I will not even hyperlink to this one, you know why? Because I know you are googling it right now, fool.
   Nerd-o-meter: 5/10
   Release: June 14

Monsters University: Yeah I put it on here. Come at me.
   I will admit, I was really worried initially. I wished (like I still do with Finding Nemo) that they had just let it alone, but after all the promotions and the trailer and the yearbook photos, I am starting to be sold. It also has one of my dark-horse Celebrity Crushes in Aubrey Plaza, and someone who also shares my tendency to break into a high-pitched voice when he gets excited in Charlie Day (Wow, that is an overshare—did I mention it is 1:00 am right now? This is my Friday night now. Hello ladies . . . ?). It might not be a splooge of nerd-ness, but you know you will at least consider going, and I will too. It is either going to be a home run or a strikeout, and with Disney-Pixar back at it, I am confident in leaning on the former. Cannot wait for Mike and Sully to be back, friends.
   Nerd-o-meter: 6/10
   Nostalgia-o-meter: 10/10
   Release: June 21

What’s that you say?! There are more movies?! Never fear—we know! Part II is coming soon, check back in a few days!

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