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Matt Singer

Matt Singer is the managing editor and film critic of the website ScreenCrush.com. For five years, he was the on-air host of IFC News on the Independent Film Channel, hosting coverage of film festivals and red carpets around the world. He’s been a frequent contributor to the television shows CBS This Morning Saturday and Ebert Presents At the Movies, and his writing has also appeared in print and online at The Village Voice, The Dissolve, and Indiewire.
Ted 2
Universal
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‘Ted 2’ Review: Hateful Teddy Bears Are People Too, Bro

It’s funny that the poster for Ted 2 features the title character with his back to the camera and his hands suggestively poised near his crotch above the tagline “Ted is coming, again” because the whole movie revolves around the fact that Ted can’t come, not even once. Ted doesn’t have any genitals or a reproductive system, so he can’t have a baby with his wife. His search for a sperm donor eventually spills into the legal system, where a court case will decide a surprisingly complex question: Is Ted a person?

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Netflix Wet Hot American Summer Photos
Netflix
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New Netflix Instant Releases: July 2015

July is almost upon us and it’s going to be a good month for Netflix users, as the streaming service is adding a whole slew of new movies and TV shows, including a bunch of exclusives. Cult comedy fans are eagerly awaiting the debut of the return of Wet Hot American Summer as a new series featuring the original cast, and standup fans will get a brand-new special from Rush Hour star Chris Tucker. Plus, there’s a whole slew of recent hits from television and cinemas (The Guest!). Read on for your guide to the new Netflix Instant releases arriving in July.

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Christopher Lee RIP
Getty Images
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Christopher Lee, ‘Dracula’, ‘Star Wars’ and ‘Lord of the Rings’ Actor, Dead at 93

After a staggering career that spanned more than sixty years actor, Christopher Lee has died. He was 93 years old. The BBC reports he passed away on Sunday “at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital in London, after being hospitalized for respiratory problems and heart failure.” The legendary actor appeared in over 240 movies.

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‘Jurassic World’ Review: The Park Is Open and Full of Dumb People

When all you care about is money, bad things happen. That’s the message of Jurassic World, where greedy theme-park executives hoping to spike attendance engineer the “Indominus Rex,” a genetically-modified dinosaur that immediately turns on its creators and runs amok. Designed as a cautionary tale about the dangers of building a meaner, badder monster purely for the sake of profits, Jurassic World works equally well as a cautionary tale about doing the same thing in movies. All of the rationalizations provided by Jurassic World’s employees — “Consumers want them bigger, louder, more teeth.” “Somebody’s gotta make sure this company has a future!” — could have been taken directly out of the mouths of the studio executives who approved this gene splice of a reboot and a sequel. Their creation — the Indominus or the movie, there’s basically no difference — is as advertised; huge, mean, and visually striking. But this experiment is not without consequences.

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Entourage Movie
Warner Bros.
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Review: The ‘Entourage’ Movie Is Basically ‘Entourage’ Season 9 on a Larger Screen

That’s Entourage in a nutshell. Whenever things threaten to get too serious, the show (and now the film) would just trot out a celebrity cameo or two, distract the audience for a couple minutes, and then carry on as if nothing ever happened. For better or worse, the Entourage movie is an extremely faithful adaptation of the Entourage television show. All the main characters and most of the key supporting players from the show’s eight seasons are back, along with series creator Doug Ellin (who co-wrote and directed the movie). Even though the TV show ended with its lovable bad boys making their first tentative steps toward maturity and monogamy — Vince gets engaged, his manager Eric (Kevin Connolly) finally settles down with his pregnant ex-girlfriend Sloan (Emmanuelle Chriqui), and Ari decides to retire to spend more time from his family — all of that gets instantly erased before the movie’s opening credits roll. Status quo restored, Vince, Eric, Ari, Turtle (Jerry Ferrara), and Johnny Drama (Kevin Dillon) return to their luxurious, lascivious ways with R-rated abandon. Shouldn’t these characters have grown up by now?

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Warner Bros.
Warner Bros.
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Clint Eastwood to Direct Movie About Heroic Pilot Chelsey ‘Sully’ Sullenberger

On January 15, 2009, US Airways Flight 1549 was struck by a flock of geese during takeoff from LaGuardia Airport. The plane’s captain, Chelsey “Sully” Sullenberger, successfully brought the plane down in the Hudson River, where all 155 passengers and crew members were evacuated and survived. It was an incredible story, one that played out in real time on the news; I vividly remember being at the 2009 Sundance Film Festival and watching the whole rescue play out on television.

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Jaws
Universal
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‘Jaws’ Is Coming Back to Theaters For Its 40th Anniversary

On June 20, 1975 a movie about an angry fish opened in about 500 theaters around the country. It was called Jaws, it was directed a guy named Steven Spielberg, it was scary as hell, and it changed the world forever. Its unique release strategy (wide instead of limited), intense television marketing campaign, and record-breaking box office essentially created the summer movie season (and made Spielberg a household name). 40 years later, regardless of its impact, Jaws remains a masterpiece, and a much better and more interesting movie than the vast majority of so-called summer blockbusters that it birthed.

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‘The End of the Tour’ Trailer: Go Road Tripping With Jason Segel and Jesse Eisenberg

In 1996, Rolling Stone sent journalist and author David Lipsky to travel with David Foster Wallace for the end of his book tour publicizing his great novel Infinite Jest. Lipsky and Wallace spent five days traveling together, and the transcripts of their conversations eventually became the basis of Lipsky’s book Although Of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself: A Road Trip with David Foster Wallace. Now the book is a movie c

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San Andreas 1
Warner Bros.
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‘San Andreas’ Review: Seek Cover From This Dumb Disaster Movie

The classics of this genre featured danger and destruction on a scale a guy could wrap his head around; a hijacked airplane, a skyscraper on fire, a capsized ocean liner filling with water. But when you live by spectacle, you die by it too. And so the disasters got bigger and bigger, one movie trying to top the next, until it became an arms race of planetary devastation. One movie blows up the White House, the next one washes it away in a tidal wave. Where do you go from there? An exploding tidal wave? At this point, if your disaster movie isn’t eradicating a large portion of the globe, don’t even waste your time.

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Poltergeist
20th Century Fox
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‘Poltergeist’ Review: A Decent Remake Haunted By the Spirit of the Original

Everything that goes wrong in Poltergeist stems from an act of desecration; the building of a cookie-cutter housing development on top of an old cemetery. Some might find the sheer act of attempting a remake of Poltergeist similarly disrespectful; the 1982 original is something of a masterpiece of suburban terror. But if viewers can look past the sheer audacity of attempting another Poltergeist, they’ll find a solid modernization, the cinematic equivalent of a decent cover version of a great rock song. It’s totally superfluous, and not nearly as satisfying as the original, but well-performed and effective in its own way. It’s nice (or, in this case, deeply unsettling) to revisit an old classic in a new arrangement.

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Steve Jobs Fassbender
Universal
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‘Steve Jobs’ Trailer: Michael Fassbender Invents the Future

All right, so Steve Jobs has nothing to do with Jobs, the Ashton Kutcher biopic about late Apple cofounder and CEO Steve Jobs — except for the fake that they’re about the same person. The twist, supposedly, for this new Jobs biopic, which is directed by Danny Boyle and written by Aaron Sorkin, is that the whole film is set at and around three different Apple product launches. (Kutcher’s version featured a more traditional biopic structure).

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