Film
Jul 3, 2024

Our 4th Of July Movie Watch List!

Staying home for the long weekend? Having people over for a bbq or pool party, both? We’ve got the ultimate list of 4th of July movie pairings for you below!

Lets be real. It’s in the title. Dont @ us about the sequels either. There is the original Independence Day with Will Smith and that’s it. Period. Caw cawwww. In the epic adventure film Independence Day, strange phenomena surface around the globe. The skies ignite. Terror races through the world’s major cities. As these extraordinary events unfold, it becomes increasingly clear that a force of incredible magnitude has arrived. Its mission: total annihilation over the Fourth of July weekend. The last hope to stop the destruction is an unlikely group of people united by fate and unimaginable circumstances.

Nothing says we’re having a great time being free like man-eating sharks. Hop in the pool and pop in the movie that launched Steven Spielberg and summer blockbusters, Jaws. If you’re real brave play it pre or post beach day, unless you’re lucky enough to have a beach house then by all means, play this baby on loop with a Bloody Mary bar for guests. You’re welcome. When a young woman is killed by a shark while skinny-dipping near the New England tourist town of Amity Island, police chief Martin Brody (Roy Scheider) wants to close the beaches, but mayor Larry Vaughn (Murray Hamilton) overrules him, fearing that the loss of tourist revenue will cripple the town. Ichthyologist Matt Hooper (Richard Dreyfuss) and grizzled ship captain Quint (Robert Shaw) offer to help Brody capture the killer beast, and the trio engage in an epic battle of man vs. nature.

Having the family over for a bbq? Pop on the Sandlot. This movie always reminds us of childhood, and how many adventures are to be had during summer vacation. When Scottie Smalls (Thomas Guiry) moves to a new neighborhood, he manages to make friends with a group of kids who play baseball at the sandlot. Together they go on a series of funny and touching adventures. The boys run into trouble when Smalls borrows a ball from his stepdad that gets hit over a fence.

If you had a feeling this was going to be on our list you were absolutely right. Do a Top Gun double feature with the original and the sequel, Top Gun: Maverick. The Top Gun Naval Fighter Weapons School is where the best of the best train to refine their elite flying skills. When hotshot fighter pilot Maverick (Tom Cruise) is sent to the school, his reckless attitude and cocky demeanor put him at odds with the other pilots, especially the cool and collected Iceman (Val Kilmer). But Maverick isn’t only competing to be the top fighter pilot, he’s also fighting for the attention of his beautiful flight instructor, Charlotte Blackwood (Kelly McGillis).

After more than 30 years of service as one of the Navy’s top aviators, Pete “Maverick” Mitchell is where he belongs, pushing the envelope as a courageous test pilot and dodging the advancement in rank that would ground him. Training a detachment of graduates for a special assignment, Maverick must confront the ghosts of his past and his deepest fears, culminating in a mission that demands the ultimate sacrifice from those who choose to fly it.

Don’t overlook stories that shine a light on those who helped create this nation. We can’t imagine a 4th of July movie list without Glory. The film stars Denzel Washington, Morgan Freeman, and Matthew Broderick. This powerful story of an often overlooked aspect of Civil War history. Following the all-Black 54th Massachusetts Infantry Regiment, Glory tells of the heroes often erased in textbooks—as well as their perseverant courage despite discrimination.

Sing-a-long with the musical hit Hamilton that follows one of America’s founding fathers. When this taped production of the blockbuster Broadway musical, written by and starring Lin-Manuel Miranda. The filmed version hit Disney+ on July 3, 2020, instantly becoming a Fourth of July movie-night favorite. The Tony- and Pulitzer-winning show tells the story of founding father Alexander Hamilton through an innovative blend of hip-hop and traditional storytelling.

Need a fun and thrilling adventure watch for the whole family? We nominate National Treasure for your viewing party this July 4th. One man’s conspiracy theory is another man’s comedy, and one man’s National Treasure is… well, another man’s National Treasure, albeit for different reasons. This heist flick follows historian Benjamin Franklin Gates, played by Nicolas Cage, on his quest to steal the Declaration of Independence and decode the encrypted map hidden within the document, leading to a precious treasure.

Celebrate the power of determination. We love Forrest Gump for a 4th of July watch. Relationships and small towns are part of what make this country fantastic. This is a beloved feature that should rank on every Independence Day watch list. Slow-witted Forrest Gump (Tom Hanks) has never thought of himself as disadvantaged, and thanks to his supportive mother (Sally Field), he leads anything but a restricted life. Whether dominating on the gridiron as a college football star, fighting in Vietnam or captaining a shrimp boat, Forrest inspires people with his childlike optimism. But one person Forrest cares about most may be the most difficult to save — his childhood love, the sweet but troubled Jenny (Robin Wright).

*Ttle thumbnail Frank Mckenna