10 must-see summer movies Whale Rider. A New Zealand Maori chief is heartbroken that the birth of a granddaughter—as opposed to a grandson—means his family will no longer lead the tribe. But the girl grows up to possess the same spiritual and leadership qualities of her ancestors. (Opens June 6)
Capturing the Friedmans. Andrew Jarecki's documentary is apparently a pretty straightforward look at an average, upper-middle-class Jewish family—until the father and youngest son are arrested for shocking and horrible crimes. (June 13) Jian Gui (The Eye). After a blind girl gets a cornea transplant, she sees more than the mortal world in this horror flick by the Pang brothers, whose Bangkok Dangerous (1999) was an offbeat little number about a sensitive deaf-mute hit man. Perhaps a nose-transplant recipient will round out the Pangs' trilogy. (June 13) Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines. As much as I want to hate anything starring future California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, the first two Terminators were so great that numero tres is a must-see. But where's King of the World Jim Cameron? And no Sawahhh Connahhh? Uh-oh. (July 2) Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl. The story's totally popcorn—captain chases pirates who stole his ship and the governor's daughter—but it does have two stellar stars in Johnny Depp and Geoffrey Rush. And if it sucks, you can always close your eyes and wait for that great theme song. Yo, ho, yo, ho . . . (July 9) Masked and Anonymous. Jeff Bridges, Penlope Cruz, John Goodman, Jessica Lange and Mr. Bob Fucking Dylan in a politically tinged benefit-concert spoof inspired by Mr. Bob Fucking Dylan hisself? I'm there. (July 25) Stoked: The Rise and Fall of Gator. Ever since the surprising success of Dogtown and Z-Boys, there have been skateboard documentaries up the ying-yang. Fortunately, this one's got an intriguing twist: '80s skate star Mark "Gator" Rogowski winding up in prison convicted of murder. (Scheduled to be released some time in July) American Wedding. I didn't want to like American Pie, and it had me rolling. I really didn't want to like the sequel, but I nearly hospitalized myself trying to hold in the laughter. Christ, just go with it. (Aug. 1) Gigli. A bona fide win-win moviegoing proposition: if this Ben Affleck/Jennifer Lopez vehicle turns out to be good, great. If it's a total train wreck, even better. (Aug. 1) American Splendor. Paul Giamatti plays Harvey Pekar, the brilliant but troubled comic-book writer and frequent uncomfortable guest on David Letterman's far superior NBC late-night show. This won the Grand Jury Prize at the 2003 Sundance Film Festival. (Aug. 15)
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