Vikings, Fighter Jets, and Black Balloons: Summer 2022’s Most Popular Films


Kenzie Herrick

Collection of movie posters from major films from this summer.

Kenzie Herrick, Contributing Writer/Photographer

This year, summer was welcomed in by the big screen. Studios released art-packed period pieces, and the highest-grossing film of 2022. In light of these achievements, it’s time to recap Summer 2022’s top movies.  

The Northman (April 2022) (R) 

“I will avenge you, Father! I will save you, Mother! I will kill you, Fjölnir!”- Prince Amleth in The Northman played by Alexander Skarsgård.  The Northman is a historical thriller directed by Robert Eggers that takes place in the heart of 10th century Iceland. Viewers follow an aging Prince Amleth as he seeks revenge against his uncle, Fjölnir. The star-studded cast including Alexander Skarsgård, Anya Taylor-Joy, and Willem Dafoe; contribute to the whopping $69.6 million made at the box office. The Northman is 137 minutes of action-packed Icelandic rage and raw Viking culture as Prince Amleth unlearns what it means to confront your anger and hold hands with grief.  

Top Gun: Maverick (May 27) (PG-13) 

Top Gun: Maverick shook the world of film this summer with a jaw-dropping $1.4-billion profit after missing countless anticipated releases. Tom Cruise makes his 36-year comeback alongside Miles Teller and Jennifer Connelly as the savant pilot, Maverick, training Navy TOPGUN graduates for a risky mission that threatens the US. Director, Joseph Kosinski, draws from his experience with TRON to nail the highspeed warfare that makes Top Gun: Maverick. This action-adventure drama is 131 minutes of stomach-churning ariel stunts and high-stakes as viewers get to watch Maverick combat his internal battles and take back what is his- the sky.  

The Black Phone (June 24) (R) 

“Would you like to see a magic trick?”- The Grabber in The Black Phone played by Ethan Hawke.  

For those who miss the child-led horror flick, IT; Director, Scott Derrickson, brings a refreshing nail-biter to the big screen. In 102 minutes, the audience is welcomed to a late 70’s Denver suburb where a child abductor known as “The Grabber” (played by Ethan Hawke) lurks in the shadows. The Black Phone collected $158.2 million at the box office and is based on a short story written by Stephen King’s son, Joe Hill. In the story, a 13-year-old boy named Finney is abducted by The Grabber and must rely on the killer’s past victims to show him the way out. Viewers can choose to watch this film through a harrowing lens, or they can view it as an escape room-esque thriller demonstrating the power of pre-teens against evil.  

Elvis (June 24) (PG-13) 

Making $281.7 million since its debut, Elvis follows the life of young Elvis Presley in Graceland as he excels in music and show business- thanks to inspirational pillars from the black community such as Little Richard and Willie Mae Thornton. Elvis has a running time of 160 minutes and is directed by Baz Luhrmann, the writer of cult classics such as Moulin Rouge! and The Great Gatsby. Austin Butler is given the role of portraying Presley, while fan favorites such as Tom Hanks and Dacre Montgomery play supporting roles. While this film has met fierce discourse due to the tangled history of Presley, the tragically complex conversation of Elvis remains a cinematic hit.