Gather round: The best 5 summer camp flicks

It’s officially summer, and for many kids, the change in seasons is synonymous with camp. While adults may not still attend summer camp, most have fond memories, or nightmares, of these fun, awkward, adventures. Let’s celebrate the season with a trip down memory lane, and a look at the top 5 summer camp movies:

“Friday the 13th” (1980)

Friday_the_thirteenth_movie_posterCamp Crystal Lake. It all started here, when poor little Jason Voorhees drowned. “Friday the 13th” might not be the first slasher flick, but it’s certainly one of the most memorable. Featuring graphic violence, and a significant twist which “Scream” always reminds us of, “Friday the 13th” is a pure classic. Like many slasher films, it was followed by an unending string of sequels and a reboot, because, you just have to go back to camp.

“The Parent Trap” (1961)

The entirety of “The Parent Trap” would never have occurred if Susan Evers (Hayley Mills) and Sharon Parent_trap_(1961)McKendrick (Mills) had not been sent to summer camp. The identical twins realize that they’re actually sisters, each raised by one of their divorced parents, Mitch (Brian Keith) and Maggie (Maureen O’Hara). Sharon and Susan connive to bring their parents back together, setting up, you guessed it, a parent trap. The camp scenes are spectacular, particularly the cabins, strict counselors, activities, rivalry, and bonding. Oh, and the rain. Summer camp has a mandatory minimum of at least one torrential downpour.

“Follow Me Boys” (1966)

Follow_Me_BoysFollow Me Boys” is one of Walt Disney’s finest live-action movies. The sentimental film follows Lem Siddons (Fred MacMurray) who becomes the leader of a new Boy Scout Troop. It stars a young Kurt Russell as a troubled, and trouble making, Boy Scout. A super catchy theme song and moving plot make this a fantastic camp flick.

“Meatballs” (1979)

Although “Meatballs” might not be the first summer camp movie, it blazed a new genre. Many camp comediesMeatballsposter emerged after Ivan Reitman’s classic. However, “Meatballs” significantly changed the Hollywood landscape as it solidified Bill Murray as his own brand. Since “Meatballs,” Murray assumed many roles, often collaborating with Reitman, and each character can be related to his goofball, wisecracking head camp counselor Tripper Harrison.

“Wet Hot American Summer” (2001)

Wet_hot_american_summerWet, Hot, American Summer” blossomed into a cult classic. It’s really no surprise with the star studded cast and offbeat humor. There’s definitely a “Meatballs” homage hidden in the film, but ultimately “Wet, Hot, American Summer” remains unique enough to avoid comparison to past camp flicks.

Runner Up

There are far too many camp movies to list them all, but “Ernest Goes to Camp” is absolutely hilarious. Jim Ernestcamp1987Varney plays the gullible Ernest perfectly, and it’s basically an exaggerated montage of everything that can go wrong at camp. Horror comedy “Cabin Fever” is a great summer camp movie. Ok, so it’s technically set during Spring Break, but the campy camp flick was filmed at Camp Raven Knob, a Boy Scout Camp in North Carolina.

Got a favorite summer camp movie we missed? Leave a comment below or give us a shout on Twitter!