Movie Issues: Best Movies To Enjoy This Summer

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Movie Issues: Best Movies To Enjoy This Summer

Summer is here, and as the days get longer and the nights hotter, you may be missing all your favorite TV shows. With all of our favorites on hiatus until the fall, what’s a movie geek to do?

We here at Movie Issues may have the cure. We sat down and thought long and hard to pick out some of the best summer movies to watch with family and friends. This first of two lists includes some perfect 4th of July fare while you’re waiting for burgers and fireworks.


Directed by Academy Award® winner Steven Spielberg, Jaws set the standard for edge-of-your-seat suspense, scaring people for almost 40 years. Upon its release as the first summer “blockbuster,” Jaws quickly became a cultural phenomenon and forever changed the movie industry.

When the seaside community of Amity finds itself under attack by a dangerous great white shark, the town’s chief of police (Roy Scheider), a young marine biologist (Richard Dreyfuss) and a grizzled shark hunter (Robert Shaw) embark on a desperate quest to destroy the beast before it strikes again. With an unforgettable score from master John Williams, Jaws remains one of the most influential and gripping adventures in motion picture history.

If you plan on watching this, do yourself a favor and get the new BluRay that came out a few months ago. Well worth the price. So many extra features and the digital remastering is so amazing you swear you’re watching a whole new movie. It really is one of the best movies ever made, and the real reason why I don’t go to the beach.

1989-weekend-at-bernies-poster1Weekend at Bernie’s

What started out as a great weekend away from the city turns into an unforgettable comedy. Andrew McCarthy and Jonathan Silverman are a couple of insurance corporation employees who discover their boss is dead. Since they believe they are responsible for his death, they desperately attempt to convince people that he is still alive.

Weekend at Bernie’s is still pretty funny for something made in 1989. It’s pretty fun to see just how creative they guys get to convince people Bernie is still alive. Props to actor Terry Kiser who plays Bernie, who plays dead really well.




Chevy Chase, Rodney Dangerfield, Bill Murray and Ted Knight tee off in a timeless comedy set in the stuffy world of country-club golf. Murray vs. the gopher is comedy gold. Anything Ted Knight says is worth watching and Dangerfield and Chase steal every scene. Caddyshack features memorable lines, great comedy and just plan fun. There’s a reason why this movie is on so many “best movie comedy” lists. Some jokes may seem dated, but over this entire movie stand up and stands out.




MPW-42287The Great Outdoors

Dan Aykroyd and John Candy are rival brothers-in-law who end up having comic misadventures when both families vacation together for the summer. It’s a good comedy full of decent humor fueled by two comedy greats. Candy and Aykrodyd work well together and really know how to work a scene with fantastic comic timing and versatility.

Also the movie features John Candy vs. a Grizzly Bear.



five_hundred_days_of_summer_xlg500 Days of Summer

A quirky romantic comedy about love and fate, Tom (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) is hopelessly, helplessly searching for the girl of his dreams, Summer (Zooey Deschanel), may just be “the one.” But the 500 days of their offbeat relationship reveal (in no particular order) that the road to happiness can be unpredictable and unbelievably funny!

This is just one damn fine movie, well-acted with great writing. You feel for all the characters and you hope for the best of each of them. It’s easy for anyone anyone who’s had a on-and-off-again relationship to relate.



936full-the-parent-trap-posterThe Parent Trap

Hayley Mills is the star of this original version of the 1961 Disney comedy. She plays twin sisters, originally unaware of each others’ existence, who later determine to bring their divorced parents together again by secretly trading places. Brian Keith and Maureen O’Hara bring some adult legitimacy to their roles as the wary parents.

The Parent Trap is one of the best Disney comedies from the 1960s. It’s been re-made several times, but this is the original and best. Mills is fantastic, and it’s really funny. The film’s special effects (making Mills look like sheand her sister are on the screen at the same time) are quite good for the time. I think the comedy still plays great today.


Wet-Hot-American-Summer-poster-1020269058Wet Hot American Summer

For anyone who’s ever had to go away at camp and has a sick and twisted sense of humor, this is the movie for you. It’s Camp Firewood, 1981, and things are happening: Camp leaders trying to keep campers alive and fending off a crazy cook with grabby hands, counselors trying to get laid, and everyone’s trying to prepare themselves for the crashing of a piece of NASA Skylab.

Yeah…it’s one of those great crazy comedies, staring some awesome actors having a good time on screen: Paul Rudd, Janeane Garofalo, David Hyde Pierce, Molly Shannon, Christopher Meloni, Elizabeth Banks, Any Poehler and Bradley Cooper.


summer-school-movie-poster-1987-1020191197Summer School

Comedy great Carl Reiner directs this fun 80’s comedy about Ocean Front High gym teacher Freddy Shoop (Mark Harmon). Shoop has big plans for the summer by going to Hawaii. But the school’s vice-principal has plans for Freddy, too: teaching remedial English to some of the worst kids in the whole school.

I remember seeing this movie at the local drive in and loving it. The humor still stands up today, Harman and Kirstie Alley have a good chemistry and are enjoyable to watch. Props to the filmmakers for making all the kids in the class unique and fun: the teen mom, angry black girl, the hot Italian transfer student, the dumb jock and the two horror-loving-film-geeks who use their skills in the movie’s most unforgettable scene.

This may not be the most original movie but it sure does justice to its small genre.

independence_day_ver3ID4: Independence Day

One of the biggest box office hits of all time delivers the ultimate encounter when mysterious and powerful aliens launch an all-out invasion against the human race. Action star Will Smith teams up with Jeff Goldblum to save us from some nasty aliens. Independence Day has some great science fiction action and great effects. But it’s mostly remembered for blowing up the White House and its iconic imagery of having big scary ships hovering over Earth’s cities; the idea still gives me chills.

It’s a shame that director Roland Emmerich shot his wad so early with this, because since these he’s been a one trick pony just blowing up famous landmarks. I guess if ain’t broken don’t fix it.


400fullThe Seven Year Itch

If you’re a classic movie fan this could be something to check out. Many may not know the movie, but everyone knows one of the most iconic images of the 20th century – Marilyn Monroe standing on a subway grate as her white dress is blown up by a passing train.

The great director Billy Wilder takes into a steamy summer in New York City with a scandalous, sexy comedy.  A married man (Tom Ewell) whose wife and son are away for the summer has his fidelity put to the test when a seductive starlet (Marilyn Monroe) moves in upstairs. Thus comedy ensues.




rear_window_xlgRear Window

Sticking with classic movies, none of Hitchcock’s films has ever given a clearer view of his genius for suspense than Rear Window. When professional photographer J.B. “Jeff” Jeffries (James Stewart) is confined to a wheelchair with a broken leg, he becomes obsessed with watching the private dramas of his neighbors play out across the courtyard. When he suspects a salesman may have murdered his nagging wife, Jeffries enlists the help of his glamorous socialite girlfriend (Grace Kelly) to investigate the highly suspicious chain of events…events that ultimately lead to one of the most memorable and gripping endings in all of film history.

This is not only one of Hitchcock’s best movies, it’s one of the best movies ever made. Rear Window is amazing from start to finish, from action to writing to cinematography: Set, colors, characters, etc. Everything is thought out to the finest detail. It works so beautifully on film.

If you love film and haven’t seen this, go buy it now. You will not be disappointed at all.


stand_by_meStand By Me

In a small woodsy Oregon town, friends Gordie (Wil Wheaton), Chris (River Phoenix), Teddy (Corey Feldman), and Vern (Jerry O’Connell) are in search of a missing teenager’s body. Wanting to be heroes in the eyes of their hometown and each other, they set out on an unforgettable two-day trek that turns into an odyssey of self-discovery. They sneak smokes, tell tall tales and band together when the going gets tough. When they encounter the town’s knife-wielding hoods also after the body, the boys discover a strength they never knew they had.

It’s one of the rare and special films about friendship and the indelible experiences of growing up. Filled with humor and suspense, based on the novella The Body by Stephen King and directed by Rob Reiner. The writing and talent are wonderful, and it shows how much friends can mean to each other when growing up and feeling alone. It’s one film everyone should see at least once in his or her life.



For the people in the mood for some “Summer Loving,” Grease still holds it’s head up high as one of the best movie musicals. Grease shot John Travolta into stardom, with recording star Olivia Newton-John making her American film debut as Sandy. The impressive supporting cast reads like a who’s-who in this quintessential musical about the fabulous ’50s. Grease is not just a nostalgic look at a simpler decade; it’s an energetic and exciting musical homage to the age of rock ‘n’ roll.

After all these years, the acting, singing and the production of Grease are really worth checking out once more. The filmmakers really managed to make a movie that stands the test of time.


friday-the-13th-poster-1980Friday the 13th

A group of eager (and horny) teenagers decide to reopen Camp Crystal Lake, which 20 years earlier was closed after the shocking and mysterious murders of two amorous camp counselors. Camp Crystal Lake, said to have a “death curse” as the result of young camper Jason’s drowning, becomes the site of horrific murders as camp counselors are killed off one by one. You can take it from there, as the teens get picked off, during a dark and stormy night. (Of course, their car won’t start and there’s no phone.)

What else could you want in a horror movie? It’s one of the very first horror films and the beginning of one of the longest-running horror series in film. See where it all started.



One Crazy SummerOne Crazy Summer

The summer takes frustrated cartoon prodigy John Cusack to Nantucket to woo aspiring singer-songwriter Demi Moore and take on the town’s weasely real estate developer and his bullying son in a sailing regatta.

One Crazy Summer is the ultimate “revenge of the misfits” story. Think of it as an Airplane for the teen set, punctuated by wacky twists (hyperactive Bobcat Goldthwait rampaging in a Godzilla suit), demented animated interludes, and the world’s ugliest dog. What more could you want?