And with a pathetic little whimper, it ends.

The summer blockbuster season of 2009 was a profitable one, thanks to Wolverine, transformers, Harry Potter, The Hangover, Up, Star Trek, and terminators. Last weekend saw the release of the summer's final big movie, Quentin Tarantino's Inglourious Basterds, and now we're left with the crummy leftovers—for national releases this week, there's only Ang Lee's handjob-for-baby-boomers, Taking Woodstock, and two shitty-looking, not-screened-for-critics horror sequels, Halloween II and The Final Destination.

So summer's done—and it felt empty, lackluster, weak. Two of the summer's biggest films/toy commercials, Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen and G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra, were more like parodies of blockbusters than actual blockbusters, while some of the highest-profile releases—Funny People, Brüno, Public Enemies—were met with underwhelming reviews and ticket sales. Aside from the always-reliable Pixar's Up, two sci-fi films unexpectedly proved to be the most worthwhile movies of the summer: Star Trek was this year's crowd-pleaser for Trekkies and non-virgins alike, and District 9 surprised audiences with a welcome jolt of originality. But summer 2009 overall? Kinda crappy.

But that leaves hope for fall, which looks to be significantly less bleh: September boasts the promising animated film 9, and Steven Soderbergh's The Informant!, and Diablo Cody's Jennifer's Body, and Mike Judge's next cult classic, Extract. The rest of the year isn't too shabby, either: There's the Coen Brothers' A Serious Man, Spike Jonze's Where the Wild Things Are, the big-screen adaptation of Cormac McCarthy's The Road, Wes Anderson's Fantastic Mr. Fox, Guy Ritchie's Sherlock Holmes, and James Cameron's Avatar. Then there's the one film that'll be like a goddamn car crash no one can resist rubbernecking: Michael Jackson: This Is It, in which the director culpable for High School Musical will slap together rehearsal footage from Jackson's ill-fated comeback tour. In other words, things are looking up—even if reading the title for December's Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel makes me want to hang myself with this noose that I've painstakingly fashioned out of barbed wire. Please engrave my tombstone with "Alviiiiiiin!"