2017 promises to be another boom year for movie franchises and this summer is no exception. In fact, the year look positively so chock full of promising films, both large and small, and ranging to enormous blockbusters, that whittling them down into a short list wasn’t easy. We managed it though, so here are some of the top movies to look forward to this summer.

Alien: Covenant

Alien: Covenant review

Set exactly one decade after the previous film in the series Prometheus, the colony ship known as Covenant heads to a distant planet where thousands of passengers remain in cryogenic sleep with embryos preserved onboard. Whena massive solar flare hits and damages the Covenant, most of those on board perish except for the pilot Tennessee (Danny McBride), first mate Oram, played here by Billy Crudup, and Michael Fassbender as the android assistant Walter. These, together with the captain’s wife Daniels (Katherine Waterston), are left to pick up the pieces and ensure that the mission remains on track, while dealing with the impact of their damaged vessel. This includes tracking down a human hospitable planet that the remaining crew discover by way of the damaged remains of once was once a transmission. Ridley Scott once again directs what must now be a personable obsession in the latest prequel to the Alien films of yesteryear and looks to put the horror that was missing in Prometheus back into the franchise. He does so with relish.

Girls Trip

Girls Trip

Prepare for the latest gross out comedy that is strictly for the ladies. When four lifelong friends (Regina Hall, Jada Pinkett Smith, Tiffany Haddish and Queen Latifah) reunite for a weekend trip to New Orleans for the annual Essence Festival things quickly get out of hand. Inspired by the discovery that one of the girls’ boyfriends hasn’t been as dedicated to the relationship as she has been, the foursome head out on their hedonistic excursion, getting more than they bargained for as they rekindle their sisterhood and rediscover their wild side. From the director behind Ride Along and Barbershop, Malcolm D. Lee, the four friends head out on the road trip of a lifetime featuring dancing, drinking, brawling, romancing, drugs, raunchy humour, plenty of bonding and enough sex jokes to make the Big Easy blush.

Molly’s Game

Molly's Game

Director Alan Sorkin, famed for The West Wing and The Newsroom, is in the driving seat for what promises to be one of the most intriguing movies to be released in recent memory. It’s intriguing because it features real personalities from within Hollywood itself. Based on the memoirs of Molly Bloom, dubbed Hollywood’s Poker Princess, the film promises to tell the story of the illegal high stakes poker games organised by Bloom that were eventually shut down by the FBI. The film, which stars Idris Elba, Chris O’Dowd, Kevin Costner and Jessica Chastain in the title role, should divulge the dirty details of what went on in these games and the behaviour of those invited.

War for the Planet of the Apes

War for the Planet of the Apes

Andy Serkis returns as Caesar as he leads his army of fellow apes into a deadly war with the advancing human hoards, led with brutal force by Woody Harrelson, clearly enjoying himself in the role. Following a near massacre of his species, Caesar sets about waging a war of his own in this revenge thriller that seeks to further strengthen this rejuvenated franchise. The film, set in Richmond, B.C., stars Steve Zahn, Karin Konoval,Terry Notaryand Judy Greer. War for the Planet of the Apes promises to build to a heady climax as the showdown between two hate filled leaders draws closer, hopefully leaving the audience shouting for more.

The House

The House

When useless mom and dad team Will Ferrell and Amy Poehler accidentally blow their daughter’s college fund, they seek alternative ways to pay for her future education. Of all the plans they could choose, undoubtedly the dumbest would be to open an illegal casino in the basement of their house but, nevertheless that is the plan they decide upon. This being a comedy, things get very silly, very quickly, much to the satisfaction of fans of either of the film’s two leads. The basement setting also plays the scene to a strip club room, a nail salon, boxing matches and an 11-year-old DJ, so expect deep belly laughs a plenty. The film certainly promises to brighten up the coming summer with fun thrills and live casino action, all twisted into funny formulas by Ferrell and Poehler. It wouldn’t make a very funny comedy, but the pair would have been better off winning the money back in an online casino, something legal here in Canada but heavily restricted in certain States over the border. Online casinos are extremely popular and especially after many games were optimised for mobile phones, so its America’s loss if they don’t wish to enjoy real money gaming like we do in Canada.

Goon: Last of the Enforcers

Goon: Last of the Enforcers

The follow up to the 2011 Canadian movie Goon, Goon: Last of the Enforcers looks to continue where the last one left off. This hockey comedy once again features the Halifax Highlanders, only this time without Doug “The Thug” Glatt (Sean William Scott), now domesticated following sporting retirement. Now we find Doug settling into life as an insurance salesman, married and with a baby on the way. Soon his easy life is disrupted as he returns to the ice to help out the Highlanders after new ownership threatens to tear them apart. Ignoring the pleas of his wife, Doug teams up with the unlikely friend Anders Cain (Wyatt Russell) to set about saving their team. Written and directed by Jay Baruchel, the film also stars Alison Pill, Liev Schreiber, and Elisha Cuthbert.