26 Movies That Will Remind You of the Magical Summers of Your Childhood
Summer is all about being outside, whether it's cooling off in the neighborhood pool or getting dirty while playing an intense game of Capture the Flag. But while everyone soaks up as much sun as they can during those precious three months, it's also nice to stay in and watch movies that transport you back in time. And since Summer is the perfect excuse for adults to still act like kids, why shouldn't your movie selection reflect that? We've rounded up some of our favorite films that we watched on a couch cushion while sitting way too close to the TV when we were young. From four friends on a mission to buy a tree house to a group of boys playing baseball on a sandlot, these movies are guaranteed to put a smile on your sun-kissed face. So, grab a Capri Sun, put on those matching pajamas, and press play to go back to a time when Summer was all about freedom and adventure.
Now and Then
While Now and Then had some dark and spooky aspects (graveyard seances, anyone?), this movie mostly makes you want to ride bikes around town with your friends, fall in love, and build friendships that last a lifetime.
The Sandlot is arguably the best Summer movie of all time. Besides baseball, this movie involves everything that a childhood Summer should entail: scary stories, sleepovers, causing trouble at the local pool, town fairs, and doing whatever it takes to get your crush to notice you.
Troop Beverly Hills
While Troop Beverly Hills is enjoyable all year-round, the Girl Scout activities of camping, sitting around a bonfire, and selling cookies just scream Summer.
It Takes Two
Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen starred in so many classics back in the day that it was hard to choose just one, but It Takes Two largely takes place at Summer camp. The adorable duo cause all the trouble that you only wish you could have gotten away with when you were young.
Not everyone wanted to go to Summer camp while growing up, and Camp Nowhere captured that struggle perfectly. While some kids liked packing up for a Summer away from their parents, others just wanted to watch cartoons, eat Taco Bell, and veg out on the couch for three months. And hey, who could blame them?
The Parent Trap
Old-school Lindsay Lohan is the best Lindsay Lohan! This adorable film dealt with the one wish everyone secretly had while growing up: you would find your secret twin and switch lives for a little while (and that they preferably lived overseas).
Ernest Goes to Camp
Ernest Goes to Camp may have a more far-fetched story line about a group of juvenile criminals going to Summer camp, but the adventures this group had were still extremely entertaining.
The Baby-Sitters Club
The Baby-Sitters Club captured that awkward moment in time when you're still not a grown-up but you don't consider yourself a kid anymore. And since Summer is a great time to try and figure out who you are outside of the classroom walls, this movie is always going to be a favorite.
The Little Rascals
There is nothing cuter than Alfalfa trying to woo Darla in The Little Rascals. End of story.
This one is for all you tomboys out there! Little Giants followed a young girl who loved to get down and dirty on the football field while trying to come to terms with her first real crush. It also starred the actor who was the subject of almost every girl's desire back in the day, Devon Sawa.
Don't Tell Mom the Babysitter's Dead
Everyone dreamed of being left home alone as a kid so you could do (and eat) whatever the heck you wanted, which makes Don't Tell Mom the Babysitter's Dead one of the best. But while the party eventually had to come to an end in the movie, you'll never want to stop watching it.
Ben Stiller as a health-crazed Summer camp counselor? Um, yes please!
My Girl breaks your heart into so many pieces every single time, but this movie will never be off the must-watch list. It's beautiful, tragic, and innocently sweet.
Free Willy gives kids the courage to stand up for what they believe in, even when it's unconventional. Not to mention, this movie kind of makes you want to skip Summer school and play with killer whales all day.
Harriet the Spy
Don't lie: you wanted to be a secret spy who solved crimes before you even reached eighth grade.
The Great Outdoors
Everything about this movie is pure gold. The humor, the log-cabin setting, the family bickering, and the Summer fling that you can only find in a small town.
National Lampoon's Vacation
Your dad probably let you watch this movie a few years before you should have, and that's why it holds a special place in your heart. And everyone can always relate to a less-than-perfect family vacation.
Who wouldn't want to lock their parents in the basement so they could take over the house to eat junk food, build forts, and impress a girl? Nobody, that's who.
Man of the House
This movie has a heartwarming story about a young boy adjusting to a new family dynamic while making unlikely friends. That boy also happens to be another major '90s crush: Jonathan Taylor Thomas.
Jungle 2 Jungle
This movie is one big adventure that combines two things every kid always wonders about: the jungle and New York City.
Father of the Bride
No matter how old you were when you first watched this, you recognized a little bit of yourself in George Banks. You also definitely wanted Annie's dream backyard wedding.
Father of the Bride Part II
This movie is just a delicious continuation of the first one that you loved just as much.
A League of Their Own
A League of Their Own gave you some of the best quotes in movie history. It also gave girls the courage to play sports, be better at them than boys, and not be afraid to get a little dirt in your skirt.
This movie just made you mad that your parents didn't move your family to Hawaii so you could learn to surf and fall in love with the local skater boy. Thanks a lot, Mom and Dad.
Kate Bosworth rocked her role as a struggling surfer trying to make it as a pro in Hawaii. Her killer body, the salty waves, and the surprise romance made for a great Summer flick.
Addams Family Values
Wednesday Addams's sass was just what you needed on a sticky Summer night. It kind of made you think of Halloween, but the Summer camp setting and the bubbly blonde made this movie feel right at home in the middle of July.