Instead of hunting down a drive-in, make the drive-in come to you this summer.
Put up a screen in your backyard, pop a little popcorn and you've the makings of a great night under the stars in your own outdoor movie theater.
What to watch? Our TX. staff rustled up some of their favorite movies for the big screen that just scream summer.
For some reason, parents seem to think that the way to spell "family bonding" is R-O-A-D-T-R-I-P.
There's just something special about being squished into one big vehicle for a week that brings a family closer together. If you've ever been the person squished in the back seat, with a sibling on one side eating a bag of Cheetos singing "99 Bottles of Beer on the Wall" at the top of his or her lungs, and a sibling on the other side, holding the puke bucket and repeatedly saying "I don't feel very good" and looking green, while your parents are in the front seat having a "heated discussion" about which road to take, all with the background noise of a baby crying, you'll love the movie "RV."
Robin Williams stars as the father who, instead of taking his wife, Cheryl Hines, and two kids to Hawaii on vacation as promised, decides to rent an RV and go on a road trip. The two kids, Josh Hutchison and Joanna Levesque, "lovingly" name the RV "The Big Rolling Turd." Watch the Munro family (and The Big Rolling Turd) encounter everything from live animals in the RV to a sewage explosion like Old Faithful.
This film is hilarious and so relatable, although parents may want to view it first before watching it with young children. "RV" will leave you wishing you had an RV ... with a glamorous "RENT ME" sign on one side like the Munro family's.
"The Sandlot" is the perfect summer movie: It's filled with many experiences that you can relate to from the fun-filled summers of your childhood, such as scorching hot summer days, splashing with a bunch of friends at the swimming pool, summer baseball, brilliant fireworks and more.
Seeing these kids' crazy adventures and their good times makes you think back to the days when your summers were totally open and carefree, a time when you and your friends could do whatever silly things you wanted to do without a driver's license or a job to supply you with money.
"Aquamarine" is the story of a teenage mermaid who runs -- or rather swims -- away in order to prove to her father that true love exists. She, along with two human girls who befriend her, set out to make the local lifeguard hottie fall in love with the mermaid, who is able to have human legs as long as the sun is up. And so begins flirting escapades, close calls with mermaid tails and girlish bonding.
Fun and lighthearted, "Aquamarine" deals with just enough serious issues to give the movie depth without weighing it down. The actors are good, if not fantastic, and the story line is entertaining and occasionally heartwarming, if not exactly groundbreaking or original. While "Aquamarine "is unlikely to be life-altering, it's a fun way to spend some time, and a great reminder of the importance of friendship.
1959, not rated
"Gidget" is an adorable movie that focuses on a young girl named Francie Lawrence and her summer transformation from a gidget (girl plus midget) into a young woman. At the beginning of the movie, Francie is only interested in school and books, both of which, at least according to her friends, are unsuitable activities for a young attractive girl in the summer; thus Francie is dragged to the beach on her first manhunt (yippee!).
The naive Francie couldn't care less for the attractive half-naked surfer bums, that is until a swimming accident introduces her to the thrills of surfing and eventually love. The film is only made better by the appearance of the heartthrobs, Sandra Dee and James Darren. Darren especially is appealing with his dreamy voice and dreamier body (honestly, don't watch this film with a guy because he might become jealous of the actor's chiseled pecs).
There's also "Gidget Goes Hawaiian" (1961) and "Gidget Goes to Rome" (1963), both of which are charming additions to this series. Needless to say, "Gidget" is a classic part of American culture and a fun summertime flick.
"Dylan, you should come with us to the drive-in."
"I don't know. My parents might get worried."
"C'mon man. You just have to live a little."
That was the exchange before I went to see "Cars" at the Motor-Vu Drive-In. My brother and sister, their spouses, a sister-in-law's brother and I buckled into the back seat of an old Suburban and rode off into the sunset. We hopped on top of the roof, passing oodles of Twizzlers and other assorted snacks around. Snuggling up in blankets, we felt a cool breeze as we anxiously anticipated what would happen next.
Each of us laughed hysterically as we watched the hilarious exploits of Tow Mater and Lightning McQueen. Something about Route 66 and a lazy, small town resonated with us. It really felt right on a summer night.
I like this one for summer because it is a summer romance and takes place on a beach on the Eastern coast. A troubled, rebellious New York girl named Ronnie (Miley Cyrus) goes down to Georgia to visit her dad for the summer. She is still angry with him for leaving her, her mom and her little brother and moving away.
While she is there, she meets Will (Liam Hemsworth), a handsome popular boy, in an awkward first encounter. Later, Ronnie finds a sea turtle in the sand and Will, a volunteer for the local aquarium, helps her keep it safe. Ronnie finds out Will is deeper than she first thought; as she falls in love with him, she also develops a better relationship with her father -- who turns out to be terminally ill with cancer -- and her brother. My favorite part is Ronnie playing the piano for her dying dad; it is so heart touching.
While some of this animated Disney movie is cheesy, it isn't too awkward to enjoy with other people. The movie about Rapunzel, a girl trying to find herself and wondering whether or not she should venture out into the world, has comedy and romance. It has a hero and a villain. All in all this makes for the perfect outdoor movie.
As teens, school kind of keeps us tied down and we have no room to roam. When summer comes, curfews fly out the window and we are once again free and becoming the people we want to be.