ATTACK THE BLOCK Be glad youre not an alien.
  • ATTACK THE BLOCK Hey, stupid aliens! You picked the wrong Earthlings to fuck with.

Summer is the time for mass-appeal blockbusters—blockbusters everybody gets excited about, blockbusters everybody goes to see, blockbusters everybody talks about—though you wouldn't know it from 2011's overstuffed, underwhelming, underperforming lineup. I'm too lazy to dig through the past few months' worth of archives, but I'm pretty sure despite big releases just about every week, I can count on one hand the number of movies I really liked. Which is maybe why I'm so stoked about the next few weeks: With two great movies coming out in Portland today (Attack the Block and Contagion), and Drive hitting next week (I've already squealed about that one), it's like, "Oh... right! This is why I like watching movies!"

ATTACK THE BLOCK—"Familiar in all the right ways—and phenomenally inventive and fresh in all the others—this thing's an absolute blast from start to end."

CONTAGION—"What Psycho did for showers? What Jaws did for the ocean? Contagion does that for EVERY SINGLE THING YOU COULD POSSIBLY IMAGINE."

WARRIOR—"Warrior joins Rocky and Raging Bull (no, not you, Million Dollar Baby, go home) in the Fightin' Movie Hall of Fame, where thrillingly brutal punches are interspersed with dollops of pathos."

GAINSBOURG: A HEROIC LIFE—"The furthest thing from a clear-eyed look at the French chanteur; the only thing it deigns to reveal about its subject is that Gainsbourg's filmmaker is obsessed with him."

There's more, as ever, in Film Shorts, including reviews of Higher Ground, The Last Circus, and The River Why. And Bobby "Fatboy" Roberts also wrote a love letter to Tom Hardy. And the best movie times in the city are, as always, right here.