Summer’s Almost Here! 5 Movies to Keep on Your Radar

These films feature bonafide stars, including Martin Lawrence, Will Smith, and Sanaa Lathan, whose performances will have you pleading for an encore.

Believe it or not, the summer is right around the corner, and the summer movie rush is upon us. 

This season is iconic for moviegoers whose favorite pastime involves packing out theaters for films featuring the buzziest stars and storylines that make us talk back to the screen. From nerve-wracking thrillers to flicks punctuated with major ammo, fast cars, heart-pounding love, and sizzling romance, the 2024 summer movie season is bound to be lit.

Dynamic duos? Check.

Award-winning actors? Check.

Melanin on all angles? Check.

Something to tug at your heartstrings? Check.

Whatever your taste, there is something for everyone.

As we say hello to May, here are five films to keep on your radar this summer.


    In this BET+ original,  directed by Thembi Banks –which stars Algee Smith, Sierra Capri, and Sanaa Lathan– a Compton teenager struggles to make ends meet for his younger siblings. Then, during a bizarre twist of fate, he is held at gunpoint by the girl of his dreams. This cast also features Mike Epps, Ta’Rhonda Jones, and Tamala Jones.

    “YOUNG. WILD. FREE” premieres on BET+ June 27.

  • Bad Boys: Ride or Die

    Get ready because the fourth installment of the Bad Boys franchise is almost here. In the action-packed tag team cop drama, Martin Lawrence and Will Smith will reprise their roles as Miami PD detectives Mike Lowrey and Marcus Burnett. In May, Variety reported that Tiffany Haddish and Tasha Smith had also joined the cast.

    When the original film premiered in 1995, it became an instant hit at the box office, and fans of the franchise have shown their support each year since. The sequel, “Bad Boys II,” followed in 2003, while “Bad Boys for Life” touched down in 2020.

    According to The Numbers, the franchise has grossed over $800 million worldwide.

    “Bad Boys: Ride or Die” hits theaters June 7. 

  • Sing Sing

    Although the summer season is peak time for high-octane flicks, it’s also home to outstanding tearjerkers. In this film, which premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival in 2023, Emmy-winner Colman Domingo portrays a falsely accused inmate who finds purpose in theater arts. While seeking justice, he also becomes a mentor to other inmates who find hope through the art form.

    “The world expects brothers like you and I to walk in with our heads held down. Nah, you’ve got to walk in like a king! Everything is yours!” says Colman's character in the trailer.

    “Sing Sing” is slated to be released July 12.

  • Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes

    There’s long been a discussion in the sci-f world that begs if apes and human beings can coexist. After multiple productions, this franchise shows no signs of slowing down, and fans can’t get enough.

    In this film—derived from the 1968 novel Le Planete des singes—that answer is given when a young ape steps out on a mission to save his village that’s been ravaged by a terrorizing force. Starring Peter Macon, this two-and-a-half-hour flick will keep you glued to the screen even after the last scene ends.

    “Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes” premieres in theaters May 10.

  • A Quiet Place: Day One

    In this alien-invasion prequel to the “A Quiet Place” wheelhouse, New Yorkers must try to survive by staying silent before they are captured. The film packs major star power, including Lupita Nyong’o and Djimon Hounsou.

    “The scale of this story is bigger and more terrifying than ever before,” said Nyong’o while speaking to a crowd at CinemaCon last month in Las Vegas, Variety reports.

    Since the inception of “A Quiet Place” in 2018, the franchise has grossed over $600 million, as cited by The Numbers.

    “A Quiet Place: Day One” premieres in theaters June 28.

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