Your ultimate Fourth of July movie guide: A suggestion for every holiday scenario
July Fourth is all about hot dogs, fireworks and celebrating the good ol' U.S. of A. It's also, in the annals of Hollywood, a big movie holiday — "Independence Day," anyone? Once you get your fill of sparklers and corn on the cob, here's our viewing guide for every mood you might find yourself in. (Movies are now showing unless specified otherwise.)
If your spirit animal is a romping, stomping dinosaur: 'Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom'
Other than a quick appearance from Jeff Goldblum, the humans are just window dressing and/or snack food. Instead, this fifth "Jurassic Park" installment is all about the new Indoraptor, Blue the Velociraptor, the always awesome T. rex and other dinos who find themselves first stuck on an island with an active volcano and later become the reptilian aspects of a nefarious conspiracy. Read our ★★½ (out of four) review.
If you want to revisit the exhaustion of raising a newborn: 'Incredibles 2'
The first "Incredibles" is the best Pixar movie ever, and director Brad Bird's adventurous new chapter is nearly as excellent. Holly Hunter's Elastigirl gets the spotlight as the supervillainous Screenslaver appears, while Craig T. Nelson's Mr. Incredible becomes Mr. Mom, dealing with teenage hormones and a baby with all sorts of crazy powers. Read our ★★★ review.
If you miss Kyrie Irving balling hard during basketball season: 'Uncle Drew'
The history of basketball comedies is a wasteland of mediocrity, but "Uncle Drew" is actually one of the best ever, thanks to the dream team of hoopsters in old-age makeup surrounding Lil Rel Howery, who stars as a down-on-his luck streetball coach. Irving surprises with a wicked sense of humor and Zen soulfulness as aging playground legend Uncle Drew, and Shaquille O'Neal is hilarious as his frenemy, kung fu master Big Fella.
If you want to see an America somehow crazier than ours: 'The First Purge'
The social-horror series gets a prequel (in theaters Wednesday) that goes back to the first fateful night where all crime (including murder) is legal. The first Purge begins as an experiment of an NRA-approved, third-party presidency to bring the crime rate down to 1% and focuses on a marginalized community on Staten Island that fights back against its oppressors.
If your girl gang needs to steal away for a night: 'Ocean's 8'
Sandra Bullock and Cate Blanchett lead up a crew of women who pull off a daring job at the Met Gala, but the biggest heist might be the way they make off with George Clooney's breezy action franchise. Awkwafina gets a fun breakout role, Rihanna is the essence of cool, but the real comedy dynamo here is Anne Hathaway, playing a persnickety parody of herself. Read our ★★★ review.
If you've binged every season of Netflix's 'Narcos': 'Sicario: Day of the Soldado'
The drug war, international intrigue and U.S./Mexico border drama all factor into the grim and timely sequel to the original 2015 action thriller. Josh Brolin is a CIA operative who needs to keep terrorists from being smuggled into the country, Benicio Del Toro is the hit man hired to ignite a war between cartels, and both actors have magnetic machismo to spare in the unconventional franchise. Read our ★★½ review.
If you and your buddies haven't grown up yet: 'Tag'
Jeremy Renner, Jon Hamm, Jake Johnson, Hannibal Buress and Ed Helms star as childhood friends who've been playing the same game of tag for 30 years. Dark and mean-spirited at times, the action comedy does feature some "Matrix"-y slo-mo sequences with Renner's character (who's way better at tag than anybody else) and a nice shot of heartfelt warmth by the end.
If your buddy happens to be particularly hairy: 'Solo: A Star Wars Story'
So what if the latest "Star Wars" spinoff isn't blasting the box office to smithereens? More akin to an "Indiana Jones" adventure, "Solo" is still an exciting little jaunt into the shadier part of the galaxy and an exploration of a younger version of iconic smuggler Han Solo (Alden Ehrenreich). Donald Glover is cool as Lando, but the best stuff here is anything involving Han and new best friend Chewbacca. Read our ★★★ review.
If you're lucky enough to have the whole week off: 'Sorry to Bother You' and 'Ant-Man and the Wasp'
Once you see all the other films, then you can dig into two movies of note opening July 6. "Sorry to Bother You" is Boots Riley's insane sci-fi satire about a black telemarketer (Lakeith Stanfield) who becomes really successful at his job when he uses his "white voice." And "Ant-Man and the Wasp" is Marvel's fun-loving palette cleanser to "Avengers: Infinity War," with size-changing shenanigans, family-friendly adventure and a fantastic new heroine in Evangeline Lilly's Wasp. Read our ★★★ "Ant-Man & the Wasp" review.