Best Summer movies:
The Seven Year Itch (1955)
One of my favourite Marilyn Monroe movies, and one of the best summer movies. How do I know this? Because the first time I ever saw it, was on TV in the summertime. It was the first time I'd seen a Marilyn Monroe movie, and I instantly fell in love with her. The title of the movie has often been borrowed/parodied in other Pop Culture. (For example: the two-part Full House episode titled 'The Seven Month Itch' in which Rebecca and Jesse break up.)
American Graffiti (1973)
This is a movie I just watched for the first time. It's sort of considered a classic, but it wasn't as good as I was expecting it to be. The cast is mediocre at best, the most famous people being Harrison Ford (his part is minor), Ron Howard who I can't stand, and Richard Dreyfuss who I only know because of Jaws. I was partial to the character Debbie, and her outfit/hair. The movie is set in the early 60's, which I love because of the culture of the time. Driving in cars, actually everything kind of revolves around cars; diners with girls on rollerskates, and of course the music.
Before this summer, I had never seen Jaws. So, I figured I'd better get around to watching it, as most cinephiles regard it as a Classic (for the horror genre at least). I'm not afraid of sharks, but I suppose that's because I would never put myself into a situation where I would be anywhere near a shark. I've only been to the ocean once, in British Columbia, and it wasn't for very long. I liked this movie for the sheer ridiculousness of it, like seriously, most of those deaths were so avoidable if people just didn't go in the damn water. The end kind of sucks, I started losing interest once it was the 3 men on the boat. I was rooting for the shark.
Okay, so here's a movie that I had not seen until yesterday. One of Bill Murray's first films; he plays a camp councilor. It's good, it's not great. It has all the makings of a classic summer film though; camp pranks, falling in love with girls, an epic race. It's worth a watch just to see baby Bill. He's so old now.
The Outsiders (1983)
Hello, one of my favourite movies of all time. The first time I saw it was in Grade 8. Our class read the book and then we got to watch the movie. I instantly fell for it. It's got (what do they call it?) an ensemble cast? A ton of famous dudes. Most of whom weren't yet famous when this film came out. Matt Dillon, Rob Lowe, Patrick Swayze, Emilio Estevez, Tom Cruise. Guest appearance by Tom Waits. I just love guest appearances by Tom Waits. My favourite scenes are: at the drive-in, the afternoon with Dally, Ponyboy and Johnny, the morning that Ponyboy comes back home, the rumble. My favourite character is (duh) Dally, but I also love Two-Bit (I like that he loves Mickey Mouse so much). Spoiler alert, this movie is emotional. But it's perfect for watching on a summer night.
The Goonies (1985)
Of course this is another favourite of mine, I've seen it about a million times. Adventure, friendship, caves and pirate ships and treasure.. what else could you need? A kickass song by Cyndi Lauper, that's what. The Goonies are good enough for me. My favourite characters are Mouth, and Chunk. This movie makes me want a Baby Ruth. It is truly a cult classic.
Stand By Me (1986)
Yet another favourite of mine, this movie is very special to me. It's based off a Stephen King story called The Body. My friends and I used to watch this movie a lot in high school, and listen to the soundtrack. My one friend in particular was obsessed with River Phoenix. It's kind of hard not to be. So obviously Chris is my favourite character. And even though he's evil, I am partial to Kiefer Sutherland in this movie. Something about that bleach blonde hair. My favourite parts are: hanging out in the treehouse before leaving town, in the tire yard before Gordo goes to get food, sitting around the campfire at night, and when they go swimming with the leeches. This movie is a classic.
Dirty Dancing (1987)
Okay you're going to be like, what the actual f***? when I say this, but up until yesterday I had never seen Dirty Dancing. I don't know why, it just never happened! I guess I never understood what all the fuss was about, but seeing as it's one of my boyfriend's favourite movies, (and because people kept telling me I needed to see it) I figured I should get around to it. Can I just say, I was totally impressed. I liked it way more than I thought I was going to. I've never been huge on Patrick Swayze but everything about this movie is good. I love the nickname Baby, I love whens she says "I carried a watermelon", I absolutely LOVE every single one of Baby's outfits - especially the jean shorts and cerulean tank top, the high neck striped tank top and shorts, the flowy pink wrap skirt and top. The soundtrack is absolutely unreal!!! So many of my favourite songs. And the lift... the lift at the end was almost too much. I love this movie.
Addams Family Values (1993)
Well, The Addams Family kids; Wednesday and Pugsley go to summer camp. Hilarity ensues. Wednesday falls in love! Which is so adorable. I particularily like the interactions between her and the blonde perky girl. "Is that your bathing suit?" "Is that your overbite?" or "I'll be the victim!" "...All your life". This is one sequel that doesn't suck!
The Sandlot (1993)
Omg, okay. Another one that I just watched for the first time. Don't know why it slipped through my radar all these years, but it just wasn't a staple in my household. But I actually feel like I regret not watching this movie sooner. It was amazing!!! And I don't even like baseball or sports in general. But duh that's only part of what this movie is about, generally it's just another one of your flashback to the greatest summer ever/coming-of-age movies. Which are my favourite type of movies. My favourite character is EASILY Squints. He's super adorable, with the glasses and the freckles but not in a super nerdy way, it's like he's still got confidence so it makes him sexy. Even though he's a kid. And not to get too weird but I sort of have a crush on Rodriguez. Or like if I was a girl in the movie I'd have a crush on him. Or if I was a girl watching this movie in the 90's I'd have a crush on him. Just kidding I totally have a crush on him. My favourite parts are: the night they sleep over in the treehouse, the night they play ball during fireworks, the pool scene which was just unreal and is the reason Squints is my favourite character. And of course, the whole dog chase scene. I used to live with a couple that owned a Mastiff just like Hercules, I saw him go from a puppy to a full grown dog. He was a beast. Anyways, super cute movie. Loved it a lot.
Dazed and Confused (1993)
Another all-time fave. Great soundtrack. Great cast. Great time to be alive, the 80's. I wouldn't know personally but I'm guessing. It was a simpler time. Bush parties and weed and Aerosmith concerts. My favourite characters are: Parker Posey's character Darla, Milla Jovovich (Michelle), Marissa Ribisi (Cynthia) aka Beck's wife, and obviously Matthew McConaughey's character (David). I've heard there are people who don't like Matthew McConaughey. To those people I say, what the hell? My favourite parts of this movie are: the girls initiating the freshman girls after school (AIR RAID!), the bush party of course, hanging out on the football field in the early morning. Okay so basically the entire movie. Great to watch right at the end of school, if you're still in school that is.
The Little Rascals (1994)
A classic, anyone who grew up in the 90's must know this movie. I love the little girl that plays Darla, there's a gag reel at the end of the movie during the credits where they show a bunch of clips in which she keeps looking at the camera and the producer or whoever keeps having to say "Brittany, stop looking at the camera!" My favourite characters are Porky and Buckwheat. My favourite parts are: Darla and Alfalfa's lunch date (that gets ruined), the girls sleepover with cameos from Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen/the boys sleepover, the derby race. This movie made every kid want their own clubhouse.
Heavy Weights (1995)
I'd seen the movie maybe a long time ago but I didn't remember it well so I re-watched it last night. It's quite good, Kenan Thompson is in it and he's just a baby and I love him a lot. My favourite part is when they get to camp and they all unload all the hidden snacks they smuggled in. I especially like when Kenan Thompson's character is caught with a Pez dispenser in his sock.
The Babysitters Club (1995)
Oh, The Babysitters Club. Nobody knows the BSC like I do. I've watched the TV show, read most if not all of the books (many times) including the spin-off "Little Sister" Karen books, and I've seen this movie more times than I can count. My favourite character is Stacey; I always thought the British guy Luca that she hooks up with was super hot. Rachel Leigh Cook is in this movie as the shy best-friend Mary-Ann, and Marla Sokoloff plays "Cokie" - her enemy. My favourite parts are: when the girls are all hanging out at the diner, and the mean girls rollerskate up (in flawless 90's pastel outfits); the entire Summer camp because when I was younger I thought it would have been so cool to do that; when Stacey and Claudia go to New York with Luca and try to get in a club, and he finds out she's 13 (he's 17); and Kristy's birthday in the rain/cabin This movie is the best! Girl Power.
It Takes Two (1995)
It Takes Two is one of the greatest movies of all time. Okay, it's kind of a rip off of The Parent Trap... but not exactly! These girls aren't actually sisters, they just look identical. Hey, it could happen. I am and forever will be an Olsen twins fan. That's what I grew up on, they are my GIRLS. I could school you in all their TV shows, movies, books etc. This was one of their prime movies, some may even say their peak. Guest starring a young, attractive Kirstie Alley. Who doesn't love movies about summer camp? And hello, one of the girls names is Alyssa!!! Needless to say, when I was in grade 3 I used to act out the movie at recess with my best friend. We would each run around the playground from different directions, and when we met up we would pretend to knock into each other and fall down.
Now and Then (1995)
Now and Then, otherwise known as the girl version of Stand by Me. Hey, I protest that. Except both films are mostly flashbacks, four girls four boys, spending their summer concerned with dead people... But Now and Then is more focused on what it was to be a young girl in the seventies. There are a lot of things I love about this movie. Thora Birch and Christina Ricci are two of my favourite actors, and interestingly enough both were child actors who continued to be successful as adults. Thora Birch's character Teeny is my favourite, I'm also partial to Janeane Garafolo's character who is a psychic. Fun cameos from Bonnie Hunt and Hank Azaria. And I just found out that the main character Sam's little sister was played by Rumer Willis, which makes sense since Demi plays grown-up Sam. I love the outfits Sam's mom wears, "I had no idea why, but earlier that Summer, my mom began to dress like Nancy Sinatra." My favourite parts of the movie are: when the girls are in the soda shop, when they go to the psychic, when they go on the long bike ride to the library. This movie is all the feels and worth a watch every Summer.
The Parent Trap (1998)
This version is sooo much better than the original, if you've never seen the original, don't. LiLo is where it's at. This is one movie I can watch over and over again, and I have. My favourite parts are the camp scenes, the poker scene, the pranks. The music in this movie is pretty good. I like the scene in which Hallie goes to England for the first time and meets her mom. The wedding dresses she designs actually are gorgeous. This movie kind of gives kids unrealistic expectations, because honestly how many divorced couples get back together? Not many. Also what kind of horrible parents would split their twins apart and never tell them about it. Ridiculous. But for entertainment purposes, this movie is awesome.
Wet Hot American Summer (2001)
When I asked my boyfriend what his fav Summer movies were, this was his first answer. We watched it recently, and I noticed a few things I'd never noticed before, even though I've seen this movie many times. It has a STELLAR cast; Janeane Garafolo and David Hyde Pierce (who have the most awkward conversations/are the most awkward people), Paul Rudd, Christopher Meloni, Molly Shannon, Joe Lo Truglio, Amy Poehler, Bradley Cooper, Elizabeth Banks. My favourite characters are: Gene (Christopher Meloni) for obvious reasons - he's totally insane and says the funniest stuff ("I'm gonna go fondle my sweaters") and the whole time I'm also picturing him on Law and Order so it's just too much; Andy (Paul Rudd) because I always love Paul Rudd, and the scene where he knocks his tray of food onto the ground and then has to pick it up is just amazing. Molly Shannon's scenario is funny, of course I'm biased to her as well as Amy Poehler. My favourite part is when they go into town and things... escalate. My favourite line is "You taste like a burger. I don't like you anymore." Netflix just uploaded the new Wet Hot American Summer TV mini series. No spoilers in case you haven't seen it, but it's pretty great!
Strangely enough, I'm really not a big fan of Jesse Eisenberg who is the main character of this movie, but I still love it because it's got Kristen Stewart, Kristen Wiig and Bill Hader. It's set in the 80's, I love the 80's. I love carnivals. I think carnivals and amusement parks are the essence of Summer. My favourite characters are Paulette and Bobby, because it's like watching one long SNL skit. The soundtrack is AMAZING: The Replacements, The Cure, Lou Reed and the Velvet Underground, The Jesus & Mary Chain, Big Star, Hüsker Dü, Bowie. Absolutely unreal.
So, there you have it. My picks for the best summer movies. Did I forget any? What are yours?