Old favorites return to the multiplex in July. Oscar-winners Morgan Freeman, Michael Douglas, Diane Keaton and Susan Sarandon are back. So, too, are Hercules and the furry stars from the "Planet of the Apes" franchise.
Release date: July 2
Premise: Melissa McCarthy gives another bold, brassy comedy performance. She plays Tammy, whose comic misadventures include learning her husband has cheated, losing her job and holding up a fast-food restaurant.
What to expect: McCarthy goes big, which means fans probably won't want to stay home. In this labor of love, McCarthy co-wrote the script with hubby Ben Falcone, who directed. Many admirers are along for the ride, notably Susan Sarandon (as Tammy's sassy grandmother), Kathy Bates, Dan Aykroyd, Allison Janney, Toni Collette and Sandra Oh.
Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
Release date: July 11
Premise: Fox extends the franchise, beyond 2011's "Rise of the Planet of the Apes," in another flashy movie. This one details the battle between humans and apes, and the movie title gives away the outcome.
What to expect: More spectacular makeup and special effects. The human race has been depleted by a virus, but the actors include Gary Oldman, Keri Russell and Jason Clarke. The showiest roles, however, may go to Andy Serkis and Judy Greer, who are playing apes.
And So It Goes
Release date: July 18
Premise: A rude, self-involved real-estate agent (Michael Douglas) must adopt a kinder approach after his granddaughter comes to live with him. He turns for help to a neighbor (Diane Keaton), who basically loathes him. Loathing, of course, turns to loving.
What to expect: Director Rob Reiner has been responsible for first-rate romantic comedies, such as "When Harry Met Sally" and "The American President." Writer Mark Andrus ("As Good As It Gets") delivers sarcastic dialogue, which Douglas, Keaton and Frances Sternhagen ("Cheers") obviously have fun speaking. Can Keaton recapture the magic of "Something's Gotta Give"?
Release date: July 25
Premise: As the title character, Dwayne Johnson battles mammoth creatures, huge armies and gnawing self-doubt after suffering family tragedy.
What to expect: Johnson is back in action territory and in fighting form with this lavish adventure packed with special effects. Brett Ratner directed this big, violent saga, which resembles the "300" franchise. Has Johnson's acting improved? He's working with John Hurt, Ian McShane and Rufus Sewell, who add class to any enterprise.
Release date: July 25
Premise: The title character (played by Scarlett Johansson) rebounds from a terrible situation by becoming an action heroine with awesome powers.
What to expect: This frenetic thriller examines the idea of using full mental capacity to change the world. The intriguing trailer hints at how Lucy can shift locales and subdue crowds with her mind. Morgan Freeman plays a brain professor who advises Lucy. Director Luc Besson ("La Femme Nikita") is at the controls, which raises hopes that this movie will deliver on the trailer's thrills. Best of all, Johansson struts through this star vehicle with a star's confidence.Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun