Summer is almost here, so to get you in mood for relaxing sunny days, here are a few funny movies to help you keep those summertime blues at bay:
“American Graffiti” (1973)
This dramedy is set during the ’60s as a group of teens spend some of their last summer of being young and free hanging out at the drive-in, racing cars, and chasing down elusive girls. You gotta love the use of Wolfman Jack and a (somewhat) young Harrison Ford.
“Dazed and Confused” (1993)
And here’s another coming-of-age movie set as school has just gotten out for the summer in 1976. Kids back then entertained themselves with paddles, bowling balls, parties at the moon tower, and, of course, smoking a joint on the 50-yard line of the football field. You’ve got to love Matthew McConaughey’s musings about high school girls and Ben Affleck as bully (both actors weren’t big back in the day when this movie was made).
“Y Tu Mama Tambien” (2002)
In this poignant road trip movie about living life to the fullest, a beautiful woman who has found out she has cancer leaves her cheating husband behind to join two teenage boys on their journey to an invented beach. The movie is powerful, sexual, and beautifully filmed, but it comes complete with quite a few laughs, including one involving the movie’s title (“and your mother, too”).
“The Graduate” (1967)
Dustin Hoffman’s character spends his summer getting seduced by a much-older neighbor woman in this coming-of-age comedy about life right after college (he really should have gotten into plastics!). Women named Mrs. Robinson will never be looked at the same, and the film probably left quite a few daughters wary of their overly-flirtatious mothers. It definitely does a good job capturing the mood a lot of college students are in after graduating as they wonder what to do next (with no desire to really go anywhere).
“Mr. Hulot’s Holiday” (1954)
The bumbling but loveable Mr. Hulot takes a beach vacation in this delightful movie that creates some great caricatures of tourists trying to enjoy their time at a resort. They might take issue with his odd way of playing tennis and love of loud music, but Jacques Tati’s beloved character doesn’t let being an oddball put a damper on his fun, as he enjoys everything from a funeral procession to an accidental fireworks display. This is one of the best movies for those stressing out over planning summer vacations because it might just make you look at taking time off to relax a little bit differently.
“National Lampoon’s Vacation” (1983)
It wouldn’t be summer without Clark Griswold trying to herd his family to Walley World. Any family who has ever been subjected to a road trip can relate, but hopefully they don’t have to deal with a dad that steals from hotels and threatens park workers at gunpoint, as well as dead dogs, dead aunts, vandals, and having Randy Quaid as a relative (but most guys wouldn’t mind a sexy, skinny-dipping Christie Brinkley).
“Smiles of a Summer Night” (1955)
Ingmar Bergman’s dark romantic comedy takes place at a country estate where three couples meet for a relaxing summer vacation. Here some major partner swapping occurs (unbeknownst to some parties involved), which ultimately results in two men playing Russian roulette. But don’t let the dark turn fool you — this is actually a refreshing comedy that does a great job capturing the magic of a summer night.
“Ghost World” (2001)
This is yet another movie focusing on how high school kids spend their summer, but the two girls here (Thora Birch and Scarlett Johansson) aren’t your typical teens. They spend their days finding some very interesting “found art”; dealing with nunchuck guy; making lonely record collector Steve Buscemi’s life miserable; and trying to figure out what to do with their futures. It’s definitely an interesting and funny look at just how important that last summer of high school really is and how much our actions during that time period affect the direction our lives take.
Surely a lot of people will be traveling by plane during the summertime. If you’re such a person, check out one of the funniest movies ever made about travelling (and sorry for calling you Shirley!). The basic premise here is that the crew of a plane gets stricken with food poisoning, forcing a former pilot with a fear of flying to be forced to take over the plane. There’s a naughty pilot that likes gladiator movies; an inflatable autopilot who enjoys being blown up a little too much, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, and lots of other craziness. You won’t find many movies better for getting you in a lighthearted summer mood than this one.
“Say Anything” (1989)
And here’s one of the best funny movies about a summer romance. John Cusack likely inspired a lot of underachieving guys to try the ol’ boombox-over-the-head trick to win over their dream girls, and this film full of funny dialogue also does a great job capturing the uncertainty of a post-graduation summer romance when one of the parties involved is planning a big move when the vacation is over.
So from summer vacations to summer romances, there’s sure to be some movies on this list that will help you get in sunny mood just in time for summertime.