EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA


May 2, 2013

At movie theaters, get ready for the Summer of Doom

Contrary to the Mayan calendar, which had Dec. 21, 2012, penciled in as the day everything was to go ka-boom, we’re all still all here.

But at the movies, the apocalypse is now.

Take a look through the films premiering between next weekend — when “Iron Man 3” explodes on a zillion screens, kick-starting Hollywood’s summer season — and Labor Day weekend.

Doom and gloom are everywhere, from global holocaust to alien invasions to putting Jay Gatsby and Jay-Z in the same movie.

Here are some of the anticipated biggies (as always, dates are subject to change):

:“Iron Man 3” (Friday): Can a new director — with an ‘80s action-screenwriting pedigree — keep the Robert Downey-in-a-titanium-alloy-suit franchise going? Jon Favreau, who helmed the first two “IMs,” is out, and Shane Black of “Lethal Weapon” fame is in. So is Ben Kingsley, as maniac villain Mandarin. Tony Stark, the billionaire industrialist with the high-tech, heavy-metal getup, has to save a bunch of people, including Gwyneth Paltrow (his gal Friday, aka Pepper Potts). And thus Hollywood’s summer begins. PG-13.

“The Great Gatsby” (May 10): “It takes two to make an accident,” F. Scott Fitzgerald wrote in his Roaring Twenties novel. Let’s hope Aussie auteur Baz Luhrmann hasn’t made a gigantic, expensive accident with his 3-D, Jay-Z-soundtracked spectacle. The cast includes Leonardo DiCaprio (Gatsby), Carey Mulligan (Daisy), and Tobey Maguire (Nick Carraway). This is the fourth adaptation of the 1925 classic, the fifth if you count the 2000 TV movie, and none has pulled it off. PG-13.

“Star Trek Into Darkness” (May 17): No punctuation, no “the,” just “Star Trek Into Darkness” —can’t get more streamlined than that. J.J. Abrams is back in the director’s chair, Chris Pine back in the captain’s chair, and Zoe Saldana (Uhuru), Zachary Quinto (Spock), Simon Pegg (Scotty) and Anton Yelchin (Chekov) all back on the Enterprise’s bridge. Benedict Cumberbatch is the new nemesis, although Trekker rumors abound that he actually is playing Khan, the wrathful superhuman of the 1982 “Star Trek” film. PG-13.

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