Nick Robinson

Kings

While some potential moviegoers only needed to hear the word “Jurassic” to get excited for Colin Trevorrow’s upcoming Jurassic World, some of us needed something else – like a great cast. The news that the feature will center on a successful (and presumably safe) Jurassic World theme park that’s upended by some wild, wily dinosaurs (with a grudge? Just a hunger? Pure instinct? Who knows!) also came with the reveal that the film will find its character focus in a tourist family tossed into the middle of the dino-madness. Fair enough – after all, the first Jurassic Park included a pair of great kid actors – but the fear of a fun movie being overshadowed by bad child acting is a very real one (perhaps even more terrifying than the promise of marauding dinosaurs themselves). Fortunately, there’s little to fear here (at least as it applies to the under-eighteen set), because Jurassic World has reportedly cast two of the most exciting young actors in Hollywood – Ty Simpkins and Nick Robinson – to form the child-half of the poor, beleaguered tourist family. At this point, we don’t even care about their potential parents (though rumors that they could be Jake Johnson and Bryce Dallas Howard are awesome in their own way), because we’re sold on a Simpkins and Robinson-centric picture in a big, big way. Still better? They are just two actors in a very encouraging new generation of emerging stars-in-the-making, a new class we’re lucky to have.

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Nick Robinson

Like a herd of startled brachiosaurus, casting announcements for Jurassic World continue to stampede in, and the latest actor to hitch a ride to this dinosaur train is Nick Robinson. The star of this year’s The Kings of Summer and the ABC Family sitcom Melissa and Joey, Robinson will be playing the older brother of yesterday’s addition, Ty Simpkins. This newest piece of news (which we’ve got thanks to Variety) seems to confirm that the central characters of Jurassic World might be one big happy dinosaur-bitten family. Throw Bryce Dallas Howard into the mix as a potential mom and the rumored Jake Johnson as a potential dad and things really start to take shape. Though we don’t know anything for certain about the plot of Jurassic World, the (I’m assuming) family dynamic seems to tie in with the biggest story rumor so far – that the film will see a Jurassic World that’s up and running and very successful, and it’s during a run-of-the-mill day at the park that the dinosaurs decide to start snacking on tourists. We’ve still got a ways to go before Jurassic World hits theaters (the film is set for a June 12, 2015 release date), but at least we can be satisfied knowing that the film is coming together, being cast and will most definitely not be sinking back into the development hell from whence it came.

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Kings1

Sundance hit and bonafide charmer, Jordan Vogt-Roberts‘ The Kings of Summer continues world domination this weekend as it rolls out to thirty-odd new theaters, giving you fans of great teen cinema even less of an excuse not to catch the comedic gem on a big screen near you. To celebrate its theater expansion (and, also to celebrate just how much we love this film), we’re happy to be giving away a massive prize pack of five new alternative posters for the film. The new posters come to us from artists Rich Kelly, Jon Wilcox, Jay Ryan, eBoy, and Adam Schickling. Still better? The Kelly and Wilcox joints will arrive at your house signed by their artists. Want to decorate the walls of your newly-built summer hideaway with not one, not two, not even three, not even four, but five specially-designed posters for The Kings of Summer? Hit the break to find out how. You can also check out big versions of all five posters for your discerning eye to contemplate.

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kings of summer

Parents have the capacity to be very annoying. When you’re a only freshman in high school, you don’t exactly have the luxury of avoiding them completely by just ignoring their phone calls. They are on you. All the time. In The Kings of Summer, fifteen-year-old Joe Toy (Nick Robinson) has officially had it with his overbearing father (Nick Offerman) and decides to move out on his own, albeit with friends Patrick and Biaggio (Gabriel Basso and Moises Arias) into the wilderness, where he can finally be his own man. Joe quickly learns that becoming one with nature – as well as living outside of the parental safety net – isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. The film’s director, Jordan Vogt-Roberts, making his feature film debut here, shows incredible promise. He creates a world that is very relatable and true in terms of how it deals with adolescent angst, but at the same time, there is an element of the fantastic peppered throughout, making the film consistently refreshing and entertaining. Though the film is somewhat mired by some predictable plot points, it wins on the whole with Vogt-Robert’s creative voice and the completely engaging performances from the three young leads.

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Toy

While most films that earn the title of “Sundance hit” tend to fall on the heavier side of cinema (we’re still reeling from this year’s influx of films about highly inappropriate sexual relationships), occasionally a Sundance favorite will end up being something fun, frisky, and genuinely crowd-pleasing. Such is the case with Jordan Vogt-Roberts’ The Kings of Summer (known at the festival as Toy’s House), a coming-of-age tale in the vein of Goonies, a feel-good film about growing up, busting out, and moving on. Starring the wonderful Nick Robinson as Joe Toy, the film tracks Joe’s seemingly wild idea to leave home for his own place in the woods – a ramshackle, handmade affair that soon also houses his best friend Patrick (Gabriel Basso) and the delightfully wacky Biaggio (Moises Arias). As fun as everything may be for the boys on this particularly crazy summer, it can’t last forever. After the break, plot your own escape from the tyranny of having Nick Offerman as your dad (trust us, it’s not all bacon and whiskey) with the first trailer for The Kings of Summer.

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Toy

Sharp-tongued Joe Toy (Nick Robinson) is frustrated with his life – his overbearing father (Nick Offerman) does not understand him, his older sister Heather (Alison Brie) no longer lives at home, and he cannot seem to get a minute to himself without someone barging in on him. Joe is not alone in his frustration, his best friend Patrick (Gabriel Basso) is also feeling trapped with two helicopter parents (Megan Mullally and Marc Evan Jackson) who are constantly bombarding him with inane questions. The two boys want (need) to get out, and Joe comes up with a plan to let them do just that. After escaping a party that was suddenly broken up, Joe finds himself lost in the woods alongside the very strange (but insanely funny) Biaggio (Moises Arias.) The two happen upon a secluded section of the forrest and as Joe looks around at the lush landscape, inspiration strikes and he rushes home to tell Patrick he has a solution to their problems – they are going to build their own house to live in.

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published: 04.17.2014
B-
published: 04.17.2014
D+
published: 04.17.2014
B-
published: 04.16.2014
B+

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