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Summer Blockbuster Hits

By Oliva Harlow

Summertime isn’t just for pool parties, hammock naps and nights spent catching fireflies. After days spent soaking up sunshine and running around outdoors, the season’s long nights are perfect for snuggling up on the couch with lemonade and a big bowl of Popcorn to watch (and re-watch) your favorite summer films. Here are some of our votes:


Dirty Dancing:

Patrick Swayze’s dance moves are one way to make the summer even hotter. This 1986 classic follows an innocent girl named “Baby” (Jennifer Grey) as she crushes on her bad boy dance instructor, while spending a summer with her parents at a fancy resort in New York. With a steamy romantic plot-line and an unforgettable final dance scene where Swayze lifts Baby into the air, you’ll understand why “nobody puts Baby in a corner.”

Released August 21, 1987



If you haven’t seen it, let me “tell [you] about it stud.” This movie is packed with romance, friendship, and songs you’re sure to get stuck in your head for the entire summer. Similar to Dirty Dancin’ it’s one of those movies where the sweet girl falls for the bad boy, who’s actually not so bad after all. You can’t help but be “Hopelessly Devoted” Sandy (Olivia Newton John) and Danny (John Travolta) as they shake their hips in poodle skirts and tight black leather in this 70s classic. With themes of love, teenage rebellion, and the pressures of growing up, this movie is for everyone!

Released June 1, 1978



If you weren’t terrified of sharks already, this movie is sure to do the trick. This Steven Spielberg classic, made in 1975, follows three men tasked to hunt down a great white shark that keeps attacking New England beachgoers. While you’re more likely to be struck by lightning than bitten by a shark, you’ll probably still get nightmare-ish flashbacks every time you dip your toes in murky waters. So, this one’s probably best to watch after your beach vacay.

Released June 20, 1975


Little Rascals:

“Dear Darla, I hate your stinkin’ guts.” This juvenile love story will have you howling with laughter. When Alfalfa, a member of an anti-girl organization, is found canoodling with Darla before a very important go-kart race, other members of the group spearhead hilarious attempts to break the couple up.

Released August 5, 1994


The Notebook:

Whether you’ve seen it 1,000 times or not, you’ll need a box of tissues for this irresistible, heart-wrenching story of forbidden love and the value of memories. When the affluent Allie’s (Rachel McAdams) parents discover she’s fallen in love with a poor mill worker named Noah (Ryan Gosling), the couple is forced to break up. Years later, the duo reunites unexpectedly and is forced to ask: Was it just young love, or is this forever? Spoiler alert: It’s the real deal — so real that in their elder years, when Allie has dementia, Noah uses his wife’s writing to rekindle memories of their relationship to her.

Released June 25, 2004


Parent Trap:

Okay, so there’s the 1961 version, and then the Lindsay Lohan remake. Either are great, but our vote is the 1998 take. When two twins meet at summer camp, never having known they had a sibling, they decide to switch places and try reuniting their divorced parents. It’s a heartwarming story of familial relationships and the power of true love. Plus, who doesn’t want to see the young, freckle-faced, red-head version of Lindsay Lohan fencing and trying out a British accent?

Released July 20, 1998


Blue Crush:

Bikinis, surfing, and summer love — Can you think of a better chick flick to watch just before your Hawaiian vacay? Nope. When Anne Marie (Kate Bosworth) starts preparing for the biggest surf competition of her life, she meets a pro football player who causes her to question her priorities. Will she have to sacrifice her passion to be with the person she loves, or is there a way to balance independent success with romance?

Released August 8, 2002


National Lampoon’s Vacation:

Bless the comedic dramas of Clark Griswold (Chevy Chase). In this particular film, the family’s road trip to a California amusement park becomes a lot more adventurous — not necessarily in a good way — than expected. Though things fall apart time and time again, you simply can’t give up hope on the father’s silly optimism and his persistent attempts to give his wife and children the best time of their lives.

Released July 29,1983


Next time you’re looking for a good laugh, cry, or just a simple taste of nostalgia, take a look at this list. These films are sure to transport you back to your childhood neighborhood, first carnival ride kiss, and your up-to-no-good summer camp days.

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