Looking for summer movies? Netflix has viewers covered.
For Netflix subscribers eager to enjoy a film that reflects the sunny season, navigating through the streaming service's wide and varied collection of titles can be difficult. It’s always difficult to find something good to watch, but it’s even harder when there isn’t a specific search term to filter through the options.
Just like there are a million different things to do in the summer, there are a million different ways for a film to strike that summery cinematic vibe. Until the streaming giant decides to include a summer genre to its menu, here are ten great summer movies to stream on Netflix.
Based on Stephen King’s novel of the same name, It paints the story of a summer of friendship, growing up, and utter terror. Currently, one of the highest-grossing horror films of all time, this adaptation is sure to join the ranks of horror movie classics. Although it's filled with traditional scares, It relies on more than just the supernatural to create its fear factor.
The characters aren’t just fighting It, they’re battling their own personal demons and the demons in the people around them. Those who want to watch the summer of their nightmares, turn off the lights and grab some popcorn.
For subscribers in search of something more grounded in reality in the summer, the critically acclaimed documentary My Octopus Teacher is a must-watch. Join free diver Craig Foster under the sea in one of Cape Town’s kelp forests, where he encounters a common octopus that he forges an uncommon bond with.
This beautiful film not only showcases the magnificence of an underwater world humans rarely witness, but also touches on relationships, with nature, with oneself, and with each other.Perhaps a few viewers will even be inspired to take a plunge into the unknown themselves.
The sight of fireworks lighting up the night sky is a summer sight that both Japan and the U.S. share, and it's beneath this view that Fireworks unfolds its story. What starts as summer school students making a bet about whether fireworks are flat or round when viewed from the side blossoms into a tale of second chances, young love, and time travel.
In unusual fashion, the film is an animated adaption of a live-action television film of the same name, a reverse of the route most adaptations take.
This cult classic might as well be named the Ultimate Senior Ditch Day. Although the 80s movie takes place a month before its characters graduate high school, it epitomizes the K-12 school experience of summer being so close one can’t bear to wait any longer as the weather warms up and swimsuits start going on sale.
Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, in some ways, captures the essence of what summer vacation is. It's the dream of all the things in the world one could be doing instead of sitting in a classroom.
Based on the adventure video game franchise of the same name, this adaptation boasts a star-studded cast with Mark Walhberg, Antonio Banderas, and apparent Uncharted 4 fan Tom Holland. The action film has gotten mixed reception from critics, but most have lauded Holland's performance.
If viewers just want to kick back, indulge in some exotic escapism (and all the tropes associated with it), and watch their friendly neighborhood Spider-man go on an adventure without his web shooters, map out a path to Uncharted.
Fans of Friday the 13th should give this summer camp slasher a watch. Featuring Stranger Things’ Sadie Sink as the main heroine, the film follows her as she and her fellow campers try to simultaneously survive and end the wrath of Sarah Fier, a townswoman who was hung for being a witch in 1666.
As its title suggests, the movie is the second installment in Netflix’s Fear Street trilogy. All three films in the trilogy are the stuff of spooky campfire stories, but 1978 especially suits a serving of s’mores.
This live-action adaption of Dr. Seuss’s beloved picture book is quite polarizing, with some viewers dismissing it as a dumpster fire of a film and others finding it hilarious in its absurdity. The film certainly fails as a faithful adaption to the original story, given its adult-oriented humor and a wackiness that stretches even beyond the limits of a child’s imagination.
However, it is filled with memorable lines and charming set designs. And though it may not be a children’s film, it brings back memories of summer days spent stuck at home with nothing but one’s own games of make-believe for entertainment.
Bollywood rom-com fans are sure to already know Karan Johar’s directorial debut, Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, but it's a great starter film for viewers interested in the genre. The 90s classic is one of the several films featuring Bollywood’s iconic onscreen pair, Shah Rukh Khan and Kajol, and their famous chemistry is integral to the film. Once college students and best friends, their characters reunite at a summer camp thanks to outside meddling.
Filled to the brim with fun dance numbers, catchy music, and raw romantic tension, Kuch Kuch Hota Hai gives viewers hope that even after growing up, there’s always a chance for a summer camp romance.
For summer blockbuster fans and those who got nostalgic while watching Spider-Man: No Way Home, Netflix has Tobey Maguire’s entire Spider-Man trilogy available to stream (as well as Andrew Garfield’s The Amazing Spider-Man). The trilogy isn’t technically part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but its first installment remains not just one of Marvel’s highest-grossing films but one of the highest-grossing superhero films of all time.
Whether viewers are Marvel fans or DC fans, anyone who enjoys an amazing action movie can appreciate this piece of cinematic superhero history.
Those looking to dive into a fantasy world should check out this futuristic twist on Hans Andersen’s The Little Mermaid. This gorgeously animated film tells the tale of a Tokyo in which an outbreak of bubbles altered the laws of gravity, drawing parkour practitioners (also known as traceurs) to revolutionize and utilize their art. The new world’s status quo is shaken up when Hibiki, a talented traceur, meets a mysterious girl after falling into the ocean.
Be warned, parkour choreography isn’t the only thing that’s dizzying in this movie. The story doesn’t make much of an effort to explain why or how things happen. But for those satisfied with stunning visuals and music, and don’t mind minimal world-building, Bubble’s mesmerizing skyscape is perfect to lose oneself in.
MORE: The Best Summer 2022 Anime & Where To Watch Them
Layann Basileh is an Arab-American writer based in Southern California, currently nursing an iced coffee addiction.
Looking for summer movies? Netflix has viewers covered.