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The pinnacle of Falcon journalism

The Pitch

The pinnacle of Falcon journalism

The Pitch

Dive into our top 10 summer movie watch list

With summer just around the corner, everyone has more time to relax and enjoy the sunshine. While soaking in the sun is a tried and true summer activity, there’s no better way to take a break from the heat than sitting down to watch a movie set in summertime. The Pitch has cultivated a list of our top 10 go-to summer movies for the change of seasons. With a wide array of genres, our top 10 list of summer-themed movies offers the perfect watch options for any mood or audience. 

#10 It Takes Two (1995)

It Takes Two, released in 1995 and directed by Andy Tenant, follows two identical strangers, orphaned tomboy Amanda (Mary-Kate Olsen) and rich girl Alyssa (Ashley Olsen) who meet at summer camp. Both girls are worried about their caregivers lacking caring romantic partners. Alyssa’s father is engaged to an evil gold-digger and Amanda’s social worker is single and lonely, so the girls craft an adventurous scheme and switch places to try and get them to fall in love with each other. It Takes Two boasts a heartwarming storyline that portrays the importance of family with a classic summer camp twist. 

#9 The Sandlot (1993)

The Sandlot, released in 1993 and directed by David Mickey Evans, takes place in Los Angeles, California. The main protagonist, Scottie Smalls (Thomas Guiry), wants to learn how to play baseball, but his dad never takes the time to teach him. One day he sees a group of kids playing baseball and asks to join, and they all say no except for Benny (Mike Vitar), who decides to give Scottie a chance. Eventually, the boys all become friends and spend their summer playing baseball and hanging out. While the group goes their separate ways later in life, Benny and Smalls remain close friends. Though the movie focuses on young boys, The Sandlot’s inspirational message about valuing friendship and embracing childhood experiences applies to all ages. The Sandlot embodies themes of friendship and the love and joy that build community through a sport.

#8 Soul Surfer (2011)

Released in 2011, Soul Surfer, directed by Sean McNamara, tells the true story of famous surfer Bethany Hamilton (Anna Sophia Robb). Set in Kauai, Hawaii, Bethany lives with her parents, Cherilyn (Helen Hunt) and Thomas Hamilton (Dennis Quaid), and her two brothers, Noah Hamilton (Ross Thomas) and Timothy Hamilton (Chris Brochu). Bethany and her best friend, Alana Blanchard (Lorraine Nicholson), start competitive surfing together, both acquiring sponsorships with Rip Curl. This lifestyle takes a turn on Oct. 31, 2003, when Bethany is attacked by a shark. The film follows Bethany’s struggles with adapting to her injury and its impact on her surfing career. In an attempt to not deter viewers from entering the ocean, Bethany conveys the reassuring message that there is nothing to be afraid of, her courage continuously shining and proving that nothing can hold her back. 

#7 Friday the 13th (1980)

Released in 1980 and directed by Sean S. Cunningham, Friday the 13th is a summer camp slasher film at its best. Friday the 13th, based on Halloween (1978), is a staple in the horror genre. After a group of naive young adults attempt to reopen Camp Crystal Lake, a summer camp with a haunted past, a relentless and slightly outlandish killer stalks the teens, out for revenge. Full of jump scares and summer camp traditions, Friday the 13th plays into the hands of horror stereotypes (at points, maybe too much for younger audiences). Friday the 13th is the perfect summer horror movie to watch with friends, or if you’re brave enough, alone.

#6 The Parent Trap (1998)

The Parent Trap, directed by Nancy Meyers in 1998, follows Annie and Hallie (Lindsay Lohan), identical twins separated at birth and each raised by one of their biological parents, as they meet each other for the first time at summer camp. Together, they hatch a plan to switch places after summer is over and reunite their parents. The Parent Trap will bring viewers right back to summer camp with its clever pranks, heartwarming characters, and a nostalgic vibe.

#5 Ferris Bueller’s Day Off (1986)

“Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.” Spoken by Ferris Bueller (Matthew Broderick) himself, this iconic quote sums up Ferris Bueller’s Day Off perfectly. Premiering in 1986, and directed by John Hughes, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off sports genuine, lively characters and a lovable plot. The movie follows high school senior Ferris Bueller as he, his best friend (Alan Ruck), and his girlfriend (Mia Sara) skip school, evading their school’s principal (Jeffrey Jones) and having a glorious final adventure. Chock-full of belly-laugh humor and ingenious ploys, the movie serves as an entertaining, wholesome reminder to live your life to the fullest. 

#4 Anyone But You (2023)

Directed by Will Gluck, Anyone But You was released in December of 2023. Coined one of the most popular romantic comedies of the year, Anyone But You is worth watching several times. Leading lady, Bea (Sydney Sweeney), and bachelor bro, Ben (Glen Powell), have immediate sparks after a meet-cute, a shared grilled cheese, and spending the night together. However, after a misunderstanding, the sparks are quickly extinguished, leaving Bea and Ben with nothing but mutual hatred for each other. Thrown together again at a destination wedding in Australia, Bea and Ben’s hatred is put to the test as the two fake being a couple to make Ben’s ex jealous and keep Bea’s parents from setting her up with her ex-fiance. Loosely based on Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing, Anyone but You brings out the comedy in “rom-com,” with plenty of slapstick moments, playful dialogue, outlandish scheming, and lovable serenity songs. 

#3 The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants (2005)

Directed by Ken Kwapis and released in 2005, The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants follows teenagers Lena (Alexis Bledel), Tibby (Amber Tamblyn), Carmen (America Ferrera), and Bridget (Blake Lively) who are set to spend their first summer apart after being best friends for their whole lives. While Bridget heads to soccer camp in Mexico, Carmen travels to her father in South Carolina, Lena spends time with her grandparents in Greece, and Tibby works on a movie at home, they keep their tight connection by sharing a pair of jeans that “magically” fits them all perfectly. The Sisterhood of Traveling Pants covers more complex issues such as difficult family dynamics, grief, and cancer than your classic teen movie. It is not only the perfect summer movie with adventures and romance but sends a sweet message about the importance of friendship.

#2 The Goonies (1985)

Released in 1985 and directed by Richard Donner, The Goonies follows the storyline of a young group of misfit children who discover an ancient treasure map in their attic, leading them on an exhilarating treasure hunt through their hometown. While on their journey, the teens run into a group of criminals searching for the same treasure. As trouble ensues, the teens must rely on each other to find the treasure and survive the night. Full of charming dialogue and highlighted by the occasional jumpscare, the best aspect of The Goonies, aside from the fabulous ‘80s hair and clothes, is the film’s coming-of-age-oriented angle on the pitfalls of young romance and brotherly bonds. This classic has stood the test of time with its heartwarming storyline and well-rounded cast.

#1 Grease (1978)

Directed by Randal Kleiser and released in June of 1978, Grease follows high school sweethearts Sandy (Olivia Newton-John) and Danny (John Travolta) as their summer fling becomes a deeper romantic connection. Danny, being a “Greaser,” and Sandy, being a “good girl,” thought they would never see each other again, only to find out on the first day of school that they will be spending their senior year together. A heartfelt and exhilarating story, Grease has captured hearts for generations. This summer movie is sure to bring viewers right back to a summer romance with its catchy, charismatic, and energetic songs, and the instant chemistry between the two lovers.

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