Beating the heat with a movie marathon indoors? Here are our picks for the best flicks about summer romance.
1. 500 Days of Summer
This movie would have made the list for its title alone, but we’re also putting it here for its creative exploration of the “season of love” theme. Well-coupled folks and singletons alike can be encouraged by this sweet story of boy meets girl…that isn’t a love story.
2. My Girl
Move over Home Alone, this is our pick for best Macaulay Culkin film — and the most bittersweet film on the list. A simple tale about love, loss and growing up, My Girl will have you feeling nostalgic about your childhood and grateful that you don’t have to go through puberty again.
3. The Notebook
This film tells two stories: the story of two teenagers from different worlds who fall madly in love over Ferris wheels and ice cream cones one summer in the 1940s, and the story of what “happily ever after” actually looks like, decades later. Have tissues on hand before viewing this romantic drama.
4. Dirty Dancing
“Nobody puts Baby in a corner.”
Set at a resort in the Catskill Mountains in the summer of 1963, this box office smash is the ultimate in summer love stories, complete with dance numbers, forbidden love and a memorable scene in which the protagonist carries a watermelon.
This musical’s “Summer Nights” made the AFI’s “100 Years… 100 Songs list” — and for good reason. It’s the ultimate his-and-hers retelling of a summer romance.
This opposites-attract tale of high-school seniors Danny and Sandy, set in the summer of 1959, will have you slicking back your hair — or perming it — and pointing to your date: “You’re the one that I want.”
6. Say Anything…
Oh, to be young and in love…in the ‘80s, a decade in which romance was holding a boombox over your head in order to win the affections of the high school valedictorian.
7. Bull Durham
It’s a “Major League love story in a minor league town.”
Nothing says summer like love and baseball. (And no one says baseball like Kevin Costner. See: Field of Dreams, For the Love of the Game, Bull Durham, and The Upside of Anger.)
What begins as a tale of a strategic one-season romance turns into a home run of a love story with a hopeful future. It’s also the only movie on the list that’s just as much about sports as it about love. Consider it a great date-night pick.
8. Mamma Mia!
A Greek Island. A singing Meryl Streep. Pierce Brosnan, Stellan Skarsgård and Colin Firth all vying for her attention. And countless sing-along-worthy ABBA tunes. What more could you want from a summer movie?
9. The Way, Way Back
Consider this the off-the-beaten-path choice, but one that will stick with you. The Way, Way Back is a heartfelt, often-funny, occasionally painful, coming-of-age tale set in a seaside town over the course of one summer vacation. Highlights for our 14-year-old protagonist: an impressive feat on a water slide, and a sweet first kiss.
10. Roman Holiday.
In an Oscar-winning performance, Audrey Hepburn is a runaway princess who falls for Gregory Peck, a reporter, on her “day off” from her royal identity in Rome. This classic film will have you renewing your passport — and crushing on both leads. You might even be inspired to rent a scooter on your next date night.
What films would have made your list?