Top Comedies of Summer 2012

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Summer movie season is normally a time to watch the biggest, loudest blockbusters in the multiplex. However, the summer months are also a time for comedies, normally a time for more risqué comedies with a little more adult subject matter.

The summer of 2012 is no different, with some very interesting comedies hitting theaters. Here is a look at some of the bigger, adult-oriented funny movies of the summer.

"Dark Shadows"

When Tim Burton announced he was making a theatrical adaptation of the old supernatural soap opera "Dark Shadows," it was clear the movie would be unique. Whether he is tackling classic fairy tales ("Alice in Wonderland") or classic gothic novels ("Sleepy Hollow"), the British filmmaker always adds touches to his project that can only be described as eclectic. However, I don't think anyone was prepared for the first trailer for "Dark Shadows."

"Dark Shadows" appears to take audiences back to old-school Tim Burton, recalling the strange comedy of movies like "Pee-Wee's Big Adventure," "Beetlejuice," and "Mars Attacks!" Johnny Depp is in his ultra-weird mode, and it looks like the gothic vampire tale will focus on the absurd instead of the horrific.

"The Dictator"

Sacha Baron Cohen is polarizing to say the least. He picked up a lot of critical acclaim when he released "Borat" in 2006, a mockumentary where he went around America and exposed racism and indifference by posing as a naïve foreigner. However, the followup "Bruno" was underwhelming, a feature-length version of his flamboyant fashion guru skit from "Da Ali G Show."

With "The Dictator," Cohen once again attacks American jingoism as he portrays a dictator who wants, more than anything, to protect his country from democracy. The movie bares a similarity to the Charlie Chaplin comedy "The Great Dictator," in which Chaplin portrayed a caricature of Hitler.

Chaplin released his movie in between World War I and World War II, so the fact that Cohen releases his comedy during a time of conflict in the Middle East is also nothing new. Whether audiences can find humor in the situation yet will be determined this summer.

"That's My Boy"

It's a story of two generations: Former "Saturday Night Live" cast member Adam Sandler and current golden boy Andy Samberg star as father and son in "That's My Boy." Sandler has made a career out of switching on and off between romantic comedies and raunchy frat boy movies, and this sits squarely in the realm of the latter filmmaking form.

Sandler is Donny, a man who fathered a child while still a child himself. However, he has not been in his son's life for years. Samberg is Todd, the son who is now grown up and planning to get married. When Donny hears his son is getting married, he shows back up and his presence begins to ruin everything. This movie is clearly more "Little Nicky" than "Big Daddy."

"Ted"

Seth MacFarlane directs his live-action debut with "Ted." MacFarlane, who made his name with animated television sitcoms like "Family Guy" and "American Dad," directs Mark Wahlberg in a movie about a lonely boy who wishes his teddy bear was real and would be his friend. Years later, the boy is grown up and the teddy bear is still there and very much alive.

The movie looks to share much of the same pop culture humor sensibilities of "Family Guy." "Ted" is rated R, the teddy bear finding himself in situations you would not expect a child's toy to wind up in. Mila Kunis stars as the love interest who eventually comes between a boy and his stuffed toy.

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