Going out with a bang

As we enter the dog days of summer, the season’s blockbuster movies begin their quiet exit from the theaters. These movies, some good, some bad, prepare for a three-month slumber before they hit the shelves at our local Target.

While it’s difficult to part ways with flicks the likes of “Men in Black 3” and “The Amazing Spider-Man,” albeit for a short time, let us not forget the next wave of cinematic goodness that is set to hit the big screen this fall. Not as lucrative as their summertime counterparts, these films often yield better results in terms of quality as studios hope to impress the Academy with the Oscar nomination process on the horizon.

So, without further ado, here are five movies to look forward to as the year, and possibly the world, comes to an end. I apologize in advance for the lack of “The Twilight Saga.”

Leading off is a film that I would typically deem unnecessary; “Taken 2.” I have always had an intense hatred for sequels, but it’s hard to pass up a Liam Neeson flick, especially when it’s likely he’ll be using his fists throughout the film (which is just about every movie he’s been in). Plus, the plot is not a carbon copy of the first, so we’ll be seeing something different. “Taken 2” is scheduled for an Oct. 5 release date.

Next up is a film that’s not so different from “Taken,” minus the entire kidnapping thing. On Nov. 9, James Bond will grace the silver screen once again in the movie “Skyfall”, marking the 23rd Bond film and the 50th anniversary of the film industry’s greatest secret service agent. Daniel Craig will reprise the role of Bond once again, and after a disappointment that was “Quantum of Solace,” this one is surely going to deliver.

“Skyfall” is not the only film that will be released on Nov. 9, as Steven Spielberg’s Abraham Lincoln biopic, appropriately titled “Lincoln,” will also arrive at a theater near you. With Spielberg directing, Daniel Day-Lewis, portraying Honest Abe, and an outstanding supporting cast featuring the likes of Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Jackie Earle Haley, this is a film that the Academy will just drool over. With not one, but two promising movies hitting the big screen on the same day, Nov. 9 may warrant two trips to the cinema.

But if you’re not a history buff or you just can’t forgive Spielberg for the last “Indiana Jones” movie, have no fear, for December will see the release of not one, but two hotly anticipated films. Kicking off a big December will be “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey,” a film that I’ve been waiting for what seems like ages to see. A prequel to the acclaimed “Lord of the Rings” trilogy, Peter Jackson and the majority of the original cast will be returning, making this impervious to failure. Mark Dec. 14 in your calendar and get your walking shoes ready, for this movie, and the two others following it, will sure to take you on the journey of a lifetime.

The second movie set for a December release is Quentin Tarantino’s latest project, “Django Unchained.” If Tarantino’s name alone doesn’t spark your interest, I advise you to take a look at the star studded cast, which includes Jamie Foxx, Leonardo DiCaprio, and Samuel L. Jackson. Just think of this as a million dollar Christmas present from Tarantino to you.

And that’s a wrap, folks. Like all good lists, however, some things didn’t make the cut. Two that definitely should be considered are “Looper” (Sept. 28) and “Les Miserables” (Dec. 14). Of course, let us not forget “The Great Gatsby,” which was set for a Christmas Day release, but unfortunately was pushed back to Summer 2013. Nevertheless, I hope I gave you some ideas for a possible future date, whether it be with a significant other or your mom. Enjoy and thank me later.