Even in the UK, we still have a few incredibly hot summer days when doing anything other than sitting in front of the television (preferably with an iced gin and tonic in your hand) is practically unthinkable. Others might head to the beach, or play a spot of light tennis, but here at Roobla we’ve got our priorities sorted – when better than a hot sunny day to crack out a favourite summer film? So pour yourself a glass of something cold, pull down the blinds, and take your pick from our handy hot weather top ten!
The Parent Trap (1961)
Hayley Mills plays a pair of twins who meet for the first time at summer camp. At first, they hate each other – but, after realising they are sisters, they team up to get their divorced parents back together.
Why it works for summer: The hilarious summer camp shenanigans are perfect hot day viewing – plus, the practical jokes would be great fun to try out on a camping trip…
The Seven Year Itch (1955)
During the long sizzling summer in New York, faithful husband Richard (Tom Ewell) is tempted while his family are away. His beautiful upstairs neighbour (Marilyn Monroe) starts to get him very hot under the collar.
Why it works for summer: The New York weather makes even the most baking of UK days look mild by comparison – plus the film features the famous scene in which Marilyn cools herself down by standing over an air vent in her billowy white dress!
Dirty Dancing (1987)
Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey are swamped in sixties nostalgia as they fall in love at a summer holiday camp where ballroom dancing is the order of the day. However, the two young lovers soon shake things up with their hot new moves.
Why it works for summer: Chick flick it may be, but Dirty Dancing is also the perfect movie for those lazy summer afternoons – a holiday romance in the sun, packed with classic hits.
Here’s a token snowy one for those of us wanting to turn the heat down, not up – a bungled kidnapping plot causes all kinds of trouble for William H. Macy and Frances McDormand in the snowbound Minnesota town of Fargo.
Why it works for summer: The actors are constantly surrounded by snow and ice and are bundled up in layer upon layer of padded jackets. If Fargo doesn’t succeed in cooling you down, it’ll at least make you glad for the heat (or you could always get yourself a copy of the BBC series Frozen Planet instead).
… is the time, is the place, is the motion. Greaser Danny (John Travolta) and good girl Sandy (Olivia Newton-John) have a summer romance, but trouble (and a lot of singing) arises when they find they now both attend the same high school.
Why it works for summer: Surely no-one could go a whole summer without indulging in this glorious campy sing-along?
Ice Cold in Alex (1958)
During the Second World War, a group of stranded soldiers and nurses must trek across North Africa in a clapped out old ambulance to get away from the Nazis. Ex-alcoholic Captain Anson (John Mills) spends most of the trip dreaming about drinking an ice cold beer as soon as they arrive at their destination, the city of Alexandria.
Why it works for summer: It really makes you appreciate just how wonderful a cold drink can be; great viewing for a sweltering summer’s day.
The Godfather (1972)
Al Pacino plays Michael, the son of Mafia kingpin Vito Corleone (Marlon Brando). After spending his entire life trying to avoid the family business, Michael is unwillingly pulled into the crime underworld after an assassination attempt on his father.
Why it works for summer: Let’s face it, there’s never a bad time to watch The Godfather. Hot or cold, rain or shine, it mixes well with pretty much anything (but especially with a sultry summer evening, preferably accompanied by Italian food).
Rear Window (1954)
L.B. Jeffries (Jimmy Stewart) is confined to a wheelchair with a broken leg during an excruciating New York heat wave. Spying on his neighbours with a telescope, he becomes convinced that a man living opposite him has murdered his wife.
Why it works for summer: Shot on a single set, the claustrophobic closeness of Rear Window really makes the viewer’s blood start to boil as both the heat and the tension rise in Hitchcock’s suspenseful thriller.
Do the Right Thing (1989)
On the hottest day of the year, tensions rise in the Brooklyn suburb known as Bed-Stuy. Mookie (Spike Lee), a pizza delivery boy, must navigate the simmering racial tensions brought to the surface by the scorching weather.
Why it works for summer: The striking images of baking city streets can send you running for your sun block and shades; Do the Right Thing is a thought-provoking and challenging film.
In the Heat of the Night (Norman Jewison, 1967)
They call me Mr. Tibbs! Once again, summer heat brings tensions to boiling point as Sidney Poitier plays police officer Virgil Tibbs, a man who must contend with the prejudice of both citizens and police force in a racist Southern town after he is roped into a murder investigation.
Why it works for summer: Never before or since has a movie so accurately captured the effects of blistering summer heat on us mere mortals. This film will almost certainly leave the viewer with a craving for iced lemonade, as well as an uncontrollable urge to fill a bathtub full of ice and then jump into it.