The family blockbusters you can’t miss this summer

For many Chicago families, it wouldn’t be summer without outings to the movies to check out the latest blockbuster. The good news is that there are a number of movies coming this summer that are family-friendly. Here are some of the films we’re excited to see with the kids when we need to beat the heat, fill a rainy day or just enjoy some excitement and laughs together.

Solo: A Star Wars Story

Opens May 25

PG-13

We finally get to learn Han Solo’s backstory and how he connected with everyone’s favorite Wookiee, Chewbacca. A young Lando Calrissian, played by Donald Glover, also makes an appearance. This is a great choice for those who want to start off summer with a fun blockbuster and for those who can’t get enough of galaxies far, far away.

Incredibles 2

June 15

PG

“Done properly, parenting is a heroic act.” Incredibles 2 won me over with that quote from Edna Mode in the trailer. In this long-awaited sequel, Helen returns to work to help bring Supers back, while Bob is now home as the primary parent. A new villain, however, launches an evil plot that only The Incredibles can overcome together. 

Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom 

June 22

PG-13

This film picks up three years after dinosaurs destroyed the theme park and Jurassic World resort and just as the island’s volcano begins to erupt. Turns out that the entire planet is under threat. This movie will satisfy those who love to settle into their theater seat with popcorn to watch adventure and thrills (or Chris Pratt).

Ant-man and The Wasp

July 6

PG-13

All parents struggle with achieving balance in their lives, and that’s true even for superheroes in the Marvel Universe. Scott Lang (played by Paul Rudd) is a dad and also shrinking superhero Ant-Man, and those two roles can be tough to manage. He teams up with The Wasp (played by Evangeline Lilly). If you’re a superhero fan, this is a good option. Or, since it focuses on Lang’s role as a father, it could be fun to get tickets for you and dad as a Father’s Day gift.

Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation

July 13

PG

This franchise is headed out on the open seas when Mavis (voiced by Selena Gomez) books a cruise for her dad, Drac (voiced by Adam Sandler) and his pals. All of us parents know that summer vacation is the perfect set-up for things to go wrong, and it’s so much easier to laugh when it’s not happening to you. To my surprise, the trailer even made my husband chuckle.

Eighth Grade

July 13

NR

This coming-of-age movie about Kayla, a 13-year-old trying to make it through the end of a disastrous eighth-grade year before leaving to start high school, was a hit at Sundance. It was also a hit with the critics. “[O]ne of the best and most transfixing of the year, not just the summer,” says Rolling Stone. And The Hollywood Reporter describes it as “[t]he kind of comedy that hipper parents might just be able to watch with their own offspring and enjoy.” We’re confident that you’re the hipper parents. Teen Titans Go! to the MoviesJuly 27PG

This animated film brings the popular DC Comics-based animated television series to the big screen. The Teen Titans, led by Robin, realize that there are superhero films about everyone but them, hence the tagline “The superhero movie to end all superhero movies. Hopefully.” This is good for those who appreciate humor with a decent dose of sarcasm that the adults will get more than the kids.

Disney’s Christopher Robin

Aug. 3

NR

The trailer made me cry, and not just because I love both Winnie the Pooh and Ewan McGregor. This live-action movie has Winnie the Pooh revisiting a now-grown Christopher Robin who  faces personal and career struggles and has lost his way. Pooh and the rest of the gang from the Hundred Acre Wood arrive to help, and it looks like this is a sweet film that will connect with both children and adults.

A.X.L.

PG

Aug. 10

Miles, a teen bike rider, find his life changes dramatically after an accidental encounter with military technology — a robotic dog named A.X.L. Miles and A.X.L. form a bond, and must elude rogue scientists who created A.X.L. This family film is a good option for adventure and sci-fi fans, and those who appreciate ‘80s films like “Short Circuit.”

Movies for moms

If you’re looking for funny movies worthy of a moms’ night out, there are some great options coming out this summer that boast some serious girl power. At the top of our list are “Ocean’s 8,” “The Spy Who Dumped Me,” and “Crazy Rich Asians.”

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