It will soon be autumn. The leaves are beginning to show their signs of amber and gold, the nights become crisper and the first wisps of Oscar begin to waft through the air. Yes, the blockbuster season of summer 2012 has all but come and gone – the dog days of summer are here. I believe it fitting they call it such, cinematically at least, because looking back over the summer movie landscape, heading to theaters can be a real bitch sometimes.
From unholy multi-million dollar misfires like Battleship, to alleged comedies That’s My Boy and The Watch even to smaller films such as Chernobyl Diaries and Lovely Molly, this most auspicious of movie-going times is no more immune to crap than the barren dumping grounds of the New Year or the soon-to-be-upon-us pre-Academy Awards lull.
However, that’s certainly not to say the opposite isn’t true as well. Among the FX-laden clutter and panned would-be hits, there are extremely noteworthy independent offers that always seem to be lost in the shuffle – proverbial diamonds among the Hollywood coal. Unless these movies are able to maintain early positive word of mouth (a tricky feat when all the heavily promoted “prestige fare” begins rolling out) most of these efforts simple fade away into quasi-obscurity.
Now, even I myself have been unable to see all of the acclaimed smaller efforts that have littered these summer months, be it because of other commitments or simply because their theater count remains so low I would have to drive half way across the country to find a screening (films such as Safety Not Guaranteed, Beasts of the Southern Wild among others have eluded me). That being said, as the movie lover I am, I feel it to be my duty to highlight some of these great offerings. So without further adieu, here are the 10 best films from May to August that you may have missed.