Tuesday, August 30, 2011

It Turned Colder, That's Where It Ends...

Here's my personal list of the best summer movies of all time. Some are about summer, or they remind me of summer, or I don't know, I just think of them as summertime movies. Of course they're good any time of year (as evidenced by my inability to not watch them any time I see they're on), but it's really best to watch them later, like in January, for a shot of Vitamin D to the soul.

10) Meatballs - Bill Murray. Canadian accents. The story about the hook-hand murderer. A character named Spaz. The Stomach! I blame this movie with my lifelong obsession with summer camp.

9) Blue Crush - It's always summer in Hawaii. Girl power!

8) Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood - lookee there, I just outed myself as a chick. If you're going to watch one Sandra Bullock movie involving a lake house, make it this one.

7) Point Break - Sex wax! Red Hot Chili Pepper cameos! BODHI!

6) Muriel's Wedding - makes me cry every time. Toni Collette is so awesome.

5) The Goonies - There's nothing particularly summery about this except that it ruled my entire summer the year it came out.

4) Grease - This is neatly bookended by two summers. None of the cast is within a decade of being a teenager and even though they live in California they've all got Brooklyn accents. However. It is a musical, and musicals always get a pass where reality is concerned. Best song: hands down, "Hopelessly Devoted to You."

3) Wet Hot American Summer - It was like this movie was made as a love letter just for me. A true work of genius.

2) Dirty Dancing - "I carried a watermelon?"

1) My all-time favorite summer movie is the original The Parent Trap. While the remake is not without its charms, whenever I'm duped into watching it I can't help but feel sad, and I wonder what makes me saddest: the Natasha Richardson thing, the Lindsay Lohan thing, or the fact that it's not the Hayley Mills version. Occasionally the original is on, and for me it's like winning the lottery. Let's talk about how every plot point is more preposterous than the last: parents divorce when their twins are babies, decide they're OK with each taking one and never seeing the other twin again and acting like she never existed and la-di-da. It's all good. WHAT? Plus, I know she was wearing huge drawers, but how did Susan not feel the back of her dress being removed at the dance? How could anyone give up a hot dish like Maureen O'Hara circa 1961? How is veal parmesan "fancy slop"? How great is it that the housekeeper is named Verbena? How did they pack all those frilly dresses in their camp trunks? How much do I wish I could pull off that pixie haircut? Wouldn't you die for a lake in your backyard you could just hop into? So help me it all works. It is a true cornball fantasy. I've seen it no fewer than 100 times, which is no small feat considering it's about 50 hours long. I'd like to go watch it right now but instead I've got to do life. Just catch it if you can, I highly recommend it.

So we've learned a few things about my tastes here: I'm a child of the 70s/80s; I like musicals; I'm obsessed with surfing, and I've got a thing for the late great Patrick Swayze. (RIP, Johnny/Bodhi. I'll always love you, though not enough to make "She's Like the Wind" my song of the day.) I'll be kicking myself all day about what movies I've left off the list, but here are some honorable mentions: Hairspray, Summer School, the original Friday the 13th, the entire Frankie and Annette oeuvre.

What movies stuff your wild bikinis?

1 comment:

  1. "Jaws" doesn't even get an honorable mention!?

    I have to admit to loving the original "Parent Trap" to a ridiculous degree, probably from my sister introducing it to me when I was young. Hayley Mills!

    Your list is seriously good though. I also bough a boxed set of the "Frankie & Annette" movies for Father's Day. He, like most men his age, had (has?) a severe crush on Annette.