Reviews: Top Five Movies of the Summer

Guardians of the Galaxy

Guardians of the Galaxy

(Photo: Marvel)

“Guardians of the Galaxy,” a No. 1 box office hit for four of the six weekends it’s been released, takes viewers on an action-packed, comedic adventure.

The movie features a band of criminals led by Peter Quill (Chris Pratt), who calls himself “Starlord.” After finding himself arrested and imprisoned, Quill allies himself with four other outcasts.

Each of them have different agendas. Peter Quill is running from the thieves who hired him to steal a mysterious artifact. Gamora (Zoe Saldana), a trained assassin, is in the process of turning against her employer, a cultish god, Ronan (Lee Pace). Drax, an unintelligent strongman, is also seeking Ronan, who had previously murdered Drax’s family. Finally, Rocket (Bradley Cooper), a raccoon, and his partner in crime, Groot (Vin Diesel) tag along after trying to capture Quill for the bounty that the thieves placed on him. These five outcasts become the Guardians of the Galaxy after they discover that Quill’s artifact connects them all to Ronan.

Michael Shawn Carbaugh II is a freshman music composition major and arts and entertainment writer for Cedars. He likes to write music in nearly every genre and enjoys listening to new genres as well.

The Amazing Spider Man 2

The Amazing Spiderman 2

(Photo: Marvel)

“The Amazing Spider-Man 2” displays incredible graphics and detailed action scenes. This movie shows off the amazing powers of Spider-Man (Andrew Garfield) even better than the first movie as he becomes more accustomed to his abilities.

Along with the action-packed fights between Spider-Man and his foes, Electro (Jamie Foxx), the Green Goblin (Dane DeHaan), and Rhino (Paul Giamatti), the movie depicts the life of Spider Man’s alter-ego, Peter Parker.

The high school grad faces challenges, such as beginning to discover the secret life of his father and struggling to hang onto his relationship with Gwen Stacy (Emma Stone). With all of it’s twists, the new web-slinger’s movie will keep you on your toes.

Michael Shawn Carbaugh II is a freshman music composition major and arts and entertainment writer for Cedars. He likes to write music in nearly every genre and enjoys listening to new genres as well.

How to Train Your Dragon 2


how to train your dragon 2

(Photo: DreamWorks)

“How to Train Your Dragon 2” continues the story of the fictional character Hiccup (voiced by Jay Baruchel) began in the first movie.
Hiccup, the son of a Viking chief, is the first known person to tame a dragon from the Isle of Berk. More significantly, he is the first to convince others that dragons aren’t as dangerous as they seem.

In the first movie, Hiccup spares the life of a rare type of dragon known as a Night Fury. This leads to an unexpected friendship with the dragon, which he names Toothless. Together, Toothless and Hiccup save the Isle of Berk from a monstrous dragon.

“How to Train Your Dragon 2” fast-forwards a few years to when Hiccup is a young adult. News has reached him that an outsider has been trying to round up all the dragons to form an army. Hiccup sets out once again to protect the island and meets someone along the way he never would have imagined.

Although there are a few plot twists in “How to Train Your Dragon 2,” the movie is relatively easy to follow. The characters are not as well-developed as in the first movie, but the introduction of new characters adds to the depth of the story.

Be sure to pick up a copy of “How to Train Your Dragon 2” when it comes out on DVD Nov. 11. It’s simple, enjoyable, and family-friendly.

Laura Ullom is a freshman journalism major and arts and entertainment writer for Cedars. She enjoys creating and solving riddles and playing the occasional game of chess.​

X-Men: Days of Future Past

X-Men Days of Future Past

(Photo: Marvel)

“X-Men: Days of Future Past” is the climatic and action-packed sixth movie in the X-Men saga.
The film includes characters such as the Wolverine (Hugh Jackman), Mystique (Jennifer Lawrence), Storm (Halle Berry) and more.

The story begins in a post-war setting where mutants are being hunted by man-made robots, called Sentinels. In the film, the mutants are able to ward off the Sentinels with the help of Kitty Pryde (Ellen Page) until they are faced with an inescapable battle.

Their last hope is to go back in time and stop Mystique from assassinating Dr. Bolivar Trask (Peter Dinklage). Trask invented the idea of the Sentinels. If Mystique assassinates Trask, she will be captured, allowing humans to extract her DNA, which they will use to create the Sentinels.

The film is still playing in Beavercreek’s Rave Cinemas, so if you missed it this summer, watch it soon.

Ellie Dukes is a freshman nursing major and an arts and entertainment writer for Cedars. She likes to express her artistic abilities through cosmetology and writing. You can spot her anywhere there is a desire for God or there is a Chipotle.

Edge of Tomorrow

Edge of Tomorrow

(Photo: Warner Bros.)

“Edge of Tomorrow” is a movie like “Inception,” “Groundhog Day,” “Source Code,” and “Looper” in which our perceptions of time are bent.

Major William Cage, played by Tom Cruise, is the main character in this summer blockbuster. Cage is thrown into a war against an extraterrestrial species called the Mimics, which are incredibly agile and fast, making them nearly impossible to hit. Fighting in a mechanical exoskeleton that grants the user near superhuman strength as well as an assault rifle, Cage is killed on the frontlines… or so we are initially lead to believe.

Cage instead is thrown into a time loop, forcing him to live through death over and over until he can defeat the endless horde of Mimics threatening to destroy humanity.

Emily Blunt’s character, Rita Vrataski, is a Special Forces commander that has experienced the same time-bending loop Cage has. They join forces in Cage’s time loop to strategize against this seemingly invincible force and defeat it.

Throughout this time loop, great writing and relationship development keeps things interesting, even though the audience is seeing the same day repeatedly. The quasi-romantic relationship between Cage and Vrataski is refreshing, since Cage gets to develop his relationship with Vrataski while she doesn’t remember who he is. The chaotic intergalactic battle humanity is cast into is gripping and filled with tension. By the end of the movie, the viewer is left with a feeling of satisfaction while wanting to see this movie again and again.

Conner Ghiz is a sophomore professional writing and information design major and arts and entertainment writer for Cedars. He loves listening to music and going to Roosters Wings.

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