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June 2012

Books on Screen

June 2012

The official start to summer is almost here. And you know what that means --- a whole three months of summer blockbusters! June already brings some great, long-awaited titles to the big screen. If the weather just gets too hot to handle, have no fear; there are plenty of cinematic adventures awaiting you (hopefully in an air-conditioned theater).
In Snow White and the Huntsman, a twisted new take on the Brothers Grimm classic, the evil Queen hears word that Snow White will soon surpass her beauty --- and she’s determined to hunt her down. But Snow White has already joined forces with the fierce Huntsman, and she’s on a mission to defeat the queen for good.
On a different type of mission is Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter. Seth Grahame-Smith’s novel of the same name was a huge hit last summer, and now the story of Abe Lincoln’s quest to destroy the vampires plotting to take over the United States comes to the big screen.
And another man on a mission is featured in Bel Ami, based on Guy de Maupassant’s book of the same name. Robert Pattinson stars as a destitute young soldier in the 18th century who plans to gain power by seducing the mistresses of Paris’s most important men.
In a later era of Paris, an American professor and novelist finds his life in ruins in The Woman in the Fifth and is drawn into an unsolved series of murders happening around him.
On the small screen, A&E is launching "Longmire," an exciting new series based on Craig Johnson’s Walter Longmire mysteries. Longmire, a recent widow in psychic repair, decides to run for re-election as deputy sheriff with the help of his daughter and friends. Meanwhile, season five of HBO's "True Blood" debuts, and returning for their third seasons are “Rizzoli & Isles” on TNT and "Pretty Little Liars" on ABC Family.
And in case you missed them in theaters, Big Miracle, John Carter, and Mirror, Mirror release on DVD this month.
In Theaters:
Cast: Kristen Stewart, Charlize Theron, Chris Hemsworth, Sam Claflin
Director: Rupert Sanders
Distributor: Universal Pictures
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Release Date: June 1st (wide)
Based on: SNOW WHITE by the Brothers Grimm  
The enchanting Snow White joins forces with the fierce Huntsman, who was recruited by the diabolical Queen to kill the fair beauty, and together they fight to rid their kingdom of evil in this bold new take on the fairy-tale classic from commercial director Rupert Sanders. Obsessed with being the fairest woman in the land, the Queen learns that Snow White will soon surpass her in beauty, and seeks to achieve immortality by consuming the young girl's heart. But the Huntsman is the only one capable of braving the dark forest to seek out Snow White. Threatened with death should he refuse to follow his order, the Huntsman finds Snow White, and begins training her for the arduous battle ahead. Meanwhile, a handsome prince falls hopelessly under Snow White's spell.
Cast: Robert Pattison, Uma Thurman, Philip Glenister, Christina Ricci, Kristin Scott Thomas
Directors: Declan Donnellan and Nick Ormerod
Distributor: Magnolia Pictures
MPAA Rating: R
Release Date: June 8th (limited)
Based on: BEL AMI by Guy de Maupassant
Georges Duroy travels through 1890s Paris, from cockroach ridden garrets to opulent salons, using his wits and powers of seduction to rise from poverty to wealth, from a prostitute's embrace to passionate trysts with wealthy beauties, in a world where politics and media jostle for influence, where sex is power and celebrity an obsession.
Cast: Ethan Hawke, Kristin Scott Thomas, Joanna Kulig
Director: Pawel Pawlikowski
Distributor: ATO Pictures
MPAA Rating: R
Release Date: June 15th (limited)
Based on: THE WOMAN IN THE FIFTH by Douglas Kennedy  
American writer Tom Ricks arrives in Paris to be closer to his young daughter who is living with his estranged ex-wife. Completely broke, he accepts a job as a night guard for a local crime boss. Stationed in a basement office, his only task is to push a button when a bell rings. The tranquility of the night, he hopes, will help him focus on his new novel.
His days become more exciting when he starts a romance with Margit, a mysterious and elegant widow who sets strange rules to their meetings: she will only see him at her apartment in the fifth arrondissement, at 5 pm sharp, twice a week and he should ask no questions about her work or her past life.
When people suddenly start dying around Tom, he begins to believe that a dark force has entered his life, punishing anyone who has recently done him wrong. After the police accuse him of murdering his neighbor, Tom tries to use his weekly visits to Margit’s apartment as an alibi, only to find out that she hasn’t lived at this address for the past 15 years.
Cast: Benjamin Walker, Rufus Sewell, Dominic Cooper
Director: Timur Bekmambetov
Distributor: 20th Century Fox
MPAA Rating: R
Release Date: June 22nd (wide)
Based on: ABRAHAM LINCOLN: VAMPIRE HUNTER by Seth Grahame Smith
Abraham Lincoln, the 16th President of the United States, discovers vampires are planning to take over the United States. He makes it his mission to eliminate them.
On TV:
Cast: Robert Taylor, Katee Sackhoff, Lou Diamond Phillips, Bailey Chase, Cassidy Freeman, Adam Bartley
Network: A&E
Season 1 Premiere: June 3rd at 10:00 PM ET/PT
Based on: The Walt Longmire Mysteries by Craig Johnson
Widowed only a year, Longmire is a man in psychic repair that buries his pain behind a brave face and dry wit. Struggling since his wife’s death and at the urging of his daughter, Cady, Longmire knows that the time has come to turn his life around. With the help of Vic, a female deputy new to the department, he becomes reinvigorated about his job and committed to running for re-election. When Branch, an ambitious, young deputy decides to run against him for sheriff, Longmire feels betrayed but remains steadfast in his dedication to the community. Longmire often turns to close friend and confidant Henry Standing Bear for support as he sets out to rebuild both his personal and professional life, one step at a time.
“Pretty Little Liars”
Cast: Lucy Hale, Ashley Benson, Troian Bellisario, Shay Mitchell, Sasha Pieterse
Network: ABC Family
Season 3 Premiere: June 5th at 8:00PM ET/PT
Based on: Pretty Little Liars series by Sara Shepard
Rosewood is a perfect little town. So quiet and pristine, you’d never guess it holds so many secrets. Some of the ugliest ones belong to the prettiest girls in town --- Aria, Spencer, Hanna and Emily, four estranged friends whose darkest secrets are about to unravel.
One year ago, Alison, the Queen Bee of their group, disappeared and the girls swore they’d never tell what really happened that night. They thought their secrets would bond them together, but just the opposite is true. Then again, who’s to say what the truth is in Rosewood. It seems everyone in town is lying about something.
Now, as the mystery surrounding Alison’s disappearance resurfaces, the girls begin getting messages from “A,” saying --- and threatening --- things only Alison would know. But it couldn’t be Alison. Could it? Whoever it is, they seem to know all the girls’ secrets, and seem to be watching their every move. The girls are friends again, but will they be there for each other if their dark secrets come to light?
“Rizzoli & Isles”
Cast: Angie Harmon, Sasha Alexander, Lorraine Bracco, Lee Thompson Young, Bruce McGill, Jordan Bridges
Network: TNT
Season 3 Premiere: June 5th at 9:00PM ET/PT
Based on: Rizzoli & Isles series by Tess Gerritsen

Jane Rizzoli is a tough-as-nails Boston police detective, and Maura Isles is a smart, impeccably dressed medical examiner from a privileged background. Despite being complete opposites, the two women share an offbeat chemistry and strong working relationship that has helped them bust some of Boston’s most notorious criminals.


"True Blood"
Cast: Anna Paquin, Stephen Moyer, Sam Trammell, Ryan Kwanten, Rutina Wesley, Alexander Skarsgård
Network: HBO
Season 5 Premiere: June 12th at 9:00PM ET/PT
Based on: Sookie Stackhouse series by Charlaine Harris

Thanks to a Japanese scientist's invention of synthetic blood, vampires have progressed from legendary monsters to fellow citizens overnight. And while humans have been safely removed from the menu, many remain apprehensive about these creatures "coming out of the coffin." Religious leaders and government officials around the world have chosen their sides, but in the small Louisiana town of Bon Temps, the jury is still out.

Local waitress Sookie Stackhouse, however, knows how it feels to be an outcast. "Cursed" with the ability to listen in on people's thoughts, she's also open-minded about the integration of vampires --- particularly when it comes to Bill Compton, a handsome 173-year-old living up the road. But at the service of Bill's less virtuous vampire associates, Sookie is drawn into a series of catastrophes that will put their love to the test.


New on DVD:
Cast: Taylor Kitsch, Lynn Collins, Thomas Haden Church, Willem Dafoe, James Purefoy
Director: Andrew Stanton
Distributor: Walt Disney Pictures
MPAA Rating: PG-13
DVD Release Date: June 5th
Based on: A PRINCESS OF MARS by Edgar Rice Burroughs
From Academy Award-winning filmmaker Andrew Stanton, John Carter is a sweeping action adventure set on the mysterious and exotic planet of Barsoom (Mars). Based on the classic sci-fi novel by Edgar Rice Burroughs, the film tells the story of John Carter, who is inexplicably transported to Mars where he becomes embroiled in a conflict of epic proportions amongst the inhabitants of the planet, including Tars Tarkas and the captivating Princess Dejah Thoris. In a world on the brink of collapse, Carter discovers that the survival of Barsoom and its people rests in his hands.
Cast: Kristen Bell, Drew Barrymore, John Krasinski, Dermot Mulroney
Director: Ken Kwapis
Distributor: Universal Pictures
MPAA Rating: PG
DVD Release Date: June 19th
Based on: FREEING THE WHALES by Thomas Rose
Inspired by the true story that captured the hearts of people across the world, the rescue adventure Big Miracle tells the amazing tale of a small town news reporter and an animal-loving volunteer who are joined by rival world superpowers to save a family of majestic gray whales trapped by rapidly forming ice in the Arctic Circle.
Local newsman Adam Carlson can’t wait to escape the northern tip of Alaska for a bigger market. But just when the story of his career breaks, the world comes chasing it, too. With an oil tycoon, heads of state and hungry journalists descending upon the frigid outpost, the one who worries Adam the most is Rachel Kramer. Not only is she an outspoken environmentalist, she’s also his ex-girlfriend.
With time running out, Rachel and Adam must rally an unlikely coalition of Inuit natives, oil companies and Russian and American military to set aside their differences and free the whales. As the world’s attention turns to the top of the globe, saving these endangered animals becomes a shared cause for nations entrenched against one another and leads to a momentary thaw in the Cold War.
Cast: Julia Roberts, Lily Collins, Armie Hammer, Nathan Lane
Director: Tarsem Singh
Distributor: Relativity Media
MPAA Rating: PG
DVD Release Date: June 26th
Based on: SNOW WHITE by The Brothers Grimm
A wicked enchantress schemes and scrambles for control of a spirited orphan's throne and the attention of a charming prince. When Snow White's beauty wins the heart of the prince that she desperately pursues, the Queen banishes her to the forest, where a ravenous man-eating beast hungrily awaits. Rescued by a band of diminutive highway robbers (the seven dwarves), Snow White grows into an indomitable young woman determined to take back her realm from the treacherous Queen.