Last summer certainly wasn’t ideal for the movie industry. Theaters were virtually shuttered and the box office came to halt. However, the pandemic did allow streaming giants such as Netflix, HBO Max and Disney+ to roll out premier content (usually reserved for theaters) right to the homes of subscribers across the country. While the box office has yet to return to pre-pandemic success, there are still a number of great summer flicks available for streaming on a service near you. So, in the spirit of summertime, and our love for movies, we’ve compiled a list of the perfect summer movies, including classics such as The Sandlot and newer flicks, like Disney’s Luca, for you to enjoy from the comfort of your own home.
Check ’em out:
Based on a popular Stephen King novel by the same name, Stand by Me is a bona fide summer classic. This coming of age story follows four boys as they track down the corpse of a teenager who was struck and killed by a train. As the four march into the wilderness, they learn more about themselves, friendship and the harsh realities of the world around them. Stand by Me is currently streaming on Hulu, Sundance Now, Paramount+ and Epix.
Disney Pixar’s Luca was originally slated to release in theaters, but due to the pandemic it was ultimately distributed on the studio’s streaming platform, Disney +, in June. The Italian set animated flick is coming of age story featuring Jacob Tremblay as the inquisitive Luca Paguro, a local sea monster. Despite being warned of the danger of interacting with humans, Luca makes his way to into the human city of Portorosso. There he befriends Alberto Scorfano and their adventures begin. Pixar fans can check out Luca on Disney+, where it’s currently streaming.
2007’s Juno is quirky comedy starring Elliot Page and Michael Cera. When Page’s character, Juno MacGruff, is confronted by an unplanned pregnancy she is forced to confront the pressures of adulthood. Juno features a stacked cast, including Jennifer Garner, Jason Bateman and J.K Simmons. This summer flick went on to earn four Oscar nominations, taking home a win for Best Original Screenplay. Juno is currently streaming on Starz, which you can try out at no cost for the first 7 days.
The Sandlot is one of the movies I end up watching every summer. This baseball flick has all the makings of a feel-good summer hit with some solid acting to boot. There’s even an incredible Fourth of July scene, but I won’t spoil it for those of you who haven’t seen this 1993 classic. The Sandlot is currently streaming on Disney+.
Grease. Grease is the word, the word that you heard. Honestly, I’d feel like a phony and a fraud if I didn’t include the 1978 mega-hit Grease in this list. Depending on your age, this movie was probably inescapable. John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John star as a pair of greasers who fall in love during the summer of 1958. If you like musicals, chances are you’ll dig Grease. After all, the Grease soundtrack was the second highest-grossing album of the year. Experience some serious summer lovin’ with Grease on Philo, fuboTv with subscriptions. Or, you can check it out for free on PlutoTV.
Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey star in one of the most iconic summer movies of the ’80s, Dirty Dancing. This widely celebrated dancing movie earned numerous accolades across the awards circuit. Much like Grease, Dirty Dancing was a cultural phenomenon and saw massive success in home video sales. Plus, the soundtrack absolutely rocks. As long as you promise not to put “Baby” in a corner, you can check out Dirty Dancing on Cinemax via Hulu and Prime Video, where it’s streaming right now.
Director Spike Lee is not one to shy away from conflict and tough subject matter. His widely celebrated 1989 hit Do the Right Thing takes place on a brutally hot summer day in Brooklyn, New York. When local patron Buggin’ Out (played by Giancarlo Esposito) confronts Italian pizza store owner Sal Fragione on the lack of diversity on his pizzeria’s Wall of Fame, the issue escalates to a boiling point. The Oscar-nominated film is considered by some to be Spike Lee’s finest work. You can decide for yourself by checking out Do the Right Thing on Peacock or Starz via Prime Video, where it’s streaming now.
Weekend at Bernie’s is admittedly one of the sillier entires on this list, but that doesn’t take away from its hilarious slap-stick comedy and perfect summer vibe. Released in 1989, Weekend at Bernie’s stars Andrew McCarthy as Larry Wilson and Jonathan Silverman as Richard Parker, two unwitting employees that end up carting the dead body of their boss around an island for a weekend. Sounds ridiculous right? Well it is, but hey sometimes the best flicks are. Check out this wacky adventure on Hulu, where Weekend at Bernie’s is streaming now.
These are just a few of our favorite summer vibe movies. Want to see more? Head over to our hand-curated list on Reelgood, where we’ve picked out a ton of great summer movies streaming across a number of streaming services.
Have a summer favorite that we are missing? Let us know in the comments. Happy streaming!