31. No School Means More Time to Watch Movies
All you college kids, high schoolers, and middle schoolers out there know what we're talking about. Stay up past midnight, fall asleep with the TV still on, wake up the next day at 1 in the afternoon, refuse to bathe, get your parents to make you some food, turn on Netflix Instant, and don't move from the spot for the rest of your day. Rinse, wash, repeat, awesome.
30. It's So Hot Out That We Actually Have a Legitimate Excuse to Sit on the Couch All Day and Watch Movies
This is really an adjunct to point 31, above, but still we felt it was worth mentioning.
29. Cult Classics
Whether you're talking about indies that made a splash or low-budget gems still awaiting their due, August has always been kind to those of us who live for the next undiscovered masterpiece. This is, after all, the month that gave us 'Snakes on a Plane,' 'World's Greatest Dad,' 'Open Water,' 'Garden State,' 'Barton Fink,' 'Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert,' 'Half Nelson,' and 'American Splendor.' If the insano trailer is any indication, we'll be able to add 'The Last Circus,' out Aug. 19, to that already impressive list.
28. Free Air Conditioning
As much as we love jacking up the living room A/C after a hard day's work, we hate the way our electric bills skyrocket as a result. And yet we will gladly dish out 12 bucks to escape the pulsating heat of August and kill two hours in an upholstered ice box of a theater surrounded by a few hundred perfect strangers. If the movie's decent, all the better!
27. Buying an ICEE for the First Time Since We Were 10
Still the best way to beat the heat.
26. Matinee Discounts
Nothing gives us that frugal billionaire feeling like spending $5 or $6 on a movie that, just a few hours later, would run you $10, $11, or $12. Even if too many multiplexes are phasing out this rare vestige of customer-friendly civility, it remains one of the great joys of the school's-out, boss-is-on-vacation dead of summer.
25. Double Features
You know what's better than going to one movie? Going to two movies, BACK-TO-BACK. Don't get cocky and show up to the theater and try to wing it, though. Go online the night before, get your show times and running lengths sorted out, hydrate appropriately, and see if you can time your arrival to miss the 15 minutes of previews. By dinner time, you'll be lucky if your body temperature hasn't sunk to the high 80s.
Click here for Part 2.
24. Triple Features
The movie geek triathlon. Stand proud and give yourself a pat on the back if you've achieved this feat and somehow managed to hang on to your social life.
23. The Blinding Light of the Hot August Afternoon Sun at the End of a Matinee Showing
It's so bright you can barely open your eyes, and so hot you feel like you've been dipped in a deep fryer. If we had to imagine what being born feels like, it would probably be this. What's even better is that you've still got hours worth of daylight to enjoy. Or you could turn right around and catch that 3:15 showing of 'Captain America.'
22. Horror Remakes
Given that the only other August remake we could find was Rob Zombie's take on 'Halloween' four years ago, it's safe to say that August hasn't exactly been hitting home runs in this category over the years. But we loved the original 'Fright Night' from 1985, and the 'Fright Night' remake coming out on August 19 could change August's reputation once and for all. With all the unnecessary remakes we've endured lately, it's about time we got a keeper.
And while we're on the subject ...
21. The True Start of Horror Season
You'd think this honor would go to October, owing to Halloween and the fact that both 'Red State' and 'The Thing' are coming out then, but after barely getting by these past seven months with the likes of'Scream 4,' 'Insidious' and 'The Ward,' we're finally over the hump. We've already mentioned 'Fright Night,' but the August 26 release of 'Don't Be Afraid of the Dark,' produced by Guillermo Del Toro, is on our radar too. Let's hope both hold up to such past August classics as 'The Descent,' 'The Fly,' 'An American Werewolf in London,' 'Blade,' 'The Sixth Sense' and 'The Others.'
20. Final Destinations
Love 'em or hate 'em, few franchises out there provide as many inventively brutal scaresas the 'Final Destination' series. You're already afraid of NASCAR and escalators, thanks to the August 2009 edition, and good luck getting laser eye surgery or driving over a bridge again after 'Final Destination 5' comes out on August 12. Call us crazy, but we're pretty sure some people are gonna die.
19. It's One of Jason Voorhees' Favorite Months
Not every 'Friday the 13th' movie has come out in August, but a surprising number of them have, even if they're not exactly the most memorable entries in the series. 'Friday the 13th Part 3: 3D,' 'Friday the 13th Part VI: Jason Lives,' 'Jason Goes to Hell: The Final Friday,' and 'Freddy vs. Jason' all came out in August, and while there's no sign of Jason rearing his ugly mug around this year, we'll sleep with one eye open just in case.
18. Wearing Shorts to a Midnight Showing
Because pants are for suckers.
17. Going to a Midnight Showing and Sleeping in the Next Day
Because alarm clocks are for suckers.
16. The First Oscar-Season Trailers
With fall and winter right around the corner, don't be surprised if you start seeing teasers for movies that do not feature singing chipmunks this month. After glimpsing the trailer for 'The Ides of March' last week, we can't wait to see what this year's Oscar contenders have in store for us next.
15. Potential Oscar Contenders
Hollywood won't be breaking out the big guns until November and December, but that doesn't mean this month's movies don't have a shot at a win. Best picture winners 'Unforgiven,' 'Apocalypse Now,' 'The Usual Suspects,' 'The Fugitive' and 'Inglorious Basterds' all came out in August. If we had to put our money on a movie this month, we'd go with 'The Debt' (August 31) and its A-list cast, which includes Oscar favorite Helen Mirren.
14. Quality Movies for the Whole Family to Enjoy
Could anything be more family-friendly than 'Babe,' 'The Iron Giant,' Ponyo,' 'Freaky Friday' and 'Mary Poppins'? This year, look for 'Glee: The 3D Concert Movie' (August 12) to bring out the Gleeks in mom, dad, sis, and bro alike.
13. James Franco
Three years ago, August gaves us 'Pineapple Express,' which featured James Franco as Saul Silver, one of the most memorable burnouts in movie history. This August 5, we get to see him as a monkey-loving scientist who inadvertently helps to bring on the ape-ocalypse in 'Rise of the Planet of the Apes.' Since it can't possibly be worse than Tim Burton's 'Planet of the Apes' remake, color us intrigued, as much by the movie as by Franco's perpetual ability to juggle 20 different projects at once.
12. Good Date Movies
If you think it's hard finding movies to bring the whole family to, then try agreeing on a movie with your significant other. The last movie that left every boy and girl in the theater grinning from ear-to-ear was 'Bridesmaids,' and if there's an August movie coming out that's going to do the same, chances are it's going to be August 10's 'The Help.' We love Emma Stone, we love Viola Davis -- hell, we even liked the book! Still not sure what to think about 'One Day' (August 19), but since we're such good boyfriends over here, chances are we'll be letting you know.
Other gender-friendly date movies from August: 'Dirty Dancing,' 'Parenthood,' 'Emma'
11. Paul Rudd
Honestly, what's not to like about Paul Rudd?The guy's so adorable, we could just eat him right up. Our love for the guy started six Augusts ago, when he co-starred in 'The 40-Year-Old Virgin,' and whether he's slappin' da' bass or LARPing in KISS makeup, we can't get enough. Now that he's a leading man, we're pretty pumped to see him act a fool with a smile on his face in 'Our Idiot Brother,' out August 26.
10. Movies That Are So Awesome They Make Our Heads Explode
Last August, we got to see 'Scott Pilgrim vs. the World,' which was probably the most awesome thing we'd ever seen in our entire lives. Two years before that, we got 'The Bourne Ultimatum,' and we would do backflips off the popcorn machine if we were so lucky as to get something remotely as cool as either of those movies this month. If anything is going to carry the torch this month, we're thinking it'll be 'Bellflower' (August 5). After all, 'Mad Max' comparisons are never bad.
Other outrageously awesome August releases: 'District 9,' 'Collateral,' 'Enter the Dragon'
9. Some of the Best Documentaries We've Ever Seen
If you've seen a documentary in theaters of the past six years, there's a very good chance that one of them was written and directed by Alex Gibney. It all started with 'Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room' (not an August release), and ever since then he's been writing and directing at least one documentary per year and hoovering up Oscars along the way. We don't know how he does it, but we're hoping that 'Magic Trip' (his upcoming doc about Ken Kesey and the Merry Pranksters) will be one more great addition to an outrageously prolific career and a month that has been mighty kind to all us doc junkies.
Other great August docs: 'The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters,' 'The Tillman Story,' 'Grizzly Man'
8. Movies That Make Our Abs Hurt From Laughing So Hard
You like to laugh, we like to laugh, and while August has had its fair share of awful comedies over the years, they are not enough to overshadow the ones that still make us howl till we cry. We're still curious to see which camp '30 Minutes or Less' will fall into on August 12, but after catching a screening of 'The Change-Up' two weeks ago and laughing our heads off from beginning to end, it's nice to know that there's at least one comedy this month keeping the streak alive.
Other hilarious movies that came out in August: 'Superbad,' 'Tropic Thunder,' 'Life of Brian,' 'Beerfest,' 'Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby'
7. Movies That Are So Bad They're Good
If you've ever seen 'Troll 2' or 'Battlefield Earth,' you know what we're talking about. But even if you haven't, trust us, there really is nothing quite like belly-laughing at something for all the wrong reasons. Doesn't look like there are any new additions to the club coming out this month, but boy, has August given us some winners in the past.
The cream of the crop from past Augusts: 'Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo,' 'Without a Paddle,' 'Mr. Bean's Holiday,' 'Daddy Day Camp,' 'Disaster Movie'
6. Hilarious Movie Titles
'The Midnight Meat Train'
'Nanny McPhee Returns'
'Sukiyaki Western Django'
'Balls of Fury'
'Bratz: The Movie'
Thanks for the laughs, August.
5. Mindless Entertainment
Sometimes all you want to do is check out and give your brain a break for two hours. No subtitles, no story, no emotion, just give us some dudes who know how to shoot stuff like crazy. That's exactly why we're counting down the days until 'Colombiana' comes out, on August 26. It remains to be seen how Zoe Saldana will wear the mantle of stone-cold killer, but the fact that action god Luc Besson is on board as a co-writer means nothing can keep us away.
Other trigger-happy favorites that have come out of August: 'The Expendables,' 'Desperado,' 'G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra'
4. Some of the Worst Movies Ever Made
Nothing puts things into perspective like a movie that redefines "bad," and August has given us some of the very worst of the worst.
All of these came out in August: 'Howard the Duck,' 'Super Babies: Baby Geniuses 2,' 'Gigli,' 'The Adventures of Pluto Nash,' 'Hollow Man'
3. Did We Mention Free Air Conditioning?
Just go to the theater already. The last thing you need is to be looking like Ray Winstone from 'Sexy Beast' up there.
Nothing screams Summertime nostalgia like going to a drive-in, and if you don't act fast, you might just miss your window for good. In a world where the Internet has brought movies to our fingertips and gasoline costs keep skyrocketing, drive-ins are steadily going the way of the dinosaurs, and that is a darn shame. So take our advice: grab all your friends and pile into your car, or, better yet, grab your main squeeze and call it a date, and click here to find the nearest drive-in, because if you wait 'til next August, another piece of American movie-going history might be gone.
1. Free Outdoor Screenings
If you live in a major Us city and haven't taken advantage on outdoor screening yet, you don't know what you're missing. It's free, the movies are great, and it's the best way to enjoy the weather after the Sun goes down and catch up on the classics at the same time. So hit the links below to see a full list of screenings in your area along with what movies are playing.
What are you most excited about for August?
Photos courtesy of 20th Century Fox, the Weinstein Company, DreamWorks, and Magnet Entertainment.