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30 Best Summer Movies in 2022

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Since people are feeling (somewhat) safer going to theaters these days, Hollywood’s hoping this season will be the return of the big summer movie. You know—the one where everyone goes to their local theater to watch, sometimes a couple of times, and have endless discussions about it? And because of that, 2022’s summer movies are absolutely wild in the best way. Y’all, some of these films are really going for it.

It’s not just the superhero blockbusters, although ofc we have some of those too (Dr. Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, Thor: Love and Thunder). We’ve got acclaimed independent films (Happening, Neptune Frost), some highly-anticipated COVID-delayed projects (hey, Top Gun), and a whole bunch of stars having a blast in OTT adventure movies (see also: Nic Cage in The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent). We’ve even got a few classic-but-updated romantic comedies for that light and fluffy summer entertainment (Crush, Along for the Ride). Some of these movies are streaming right this second, and some you’ll have to wait until they premiere in theaters.

Note: I’m also including 2022 movies that take place in a warm, tropical locale that would be a perfect summer watch even if they came out earlier in the year: As a bonus, you’ll be able to stream ’em directly from your couch right this second. There’s also more to come—think Lena Dunham’s next project Sharp Stick, Dakota Johnson’s Cha Cha Real Smooth, and Zoey Deutsch’s Not Okay, for starters—so stay tuned.

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A couple goes to stay at their vacation home, only to find it being (incompetently) robbed—and so begins the twisty Hitchcockian drama. The whole thing takes place in a ~stunning~ house in Ojai, California, which will make you start researching Airbnbs immediately.

Release date: March 18, 2022

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It’s a porn horror film!! A film crew decides to take a road trip in 1979 to film The Farmer’s Daughters (lol). Because, horror movie, they end up in Texas shooting at a farmhouse belonging to a…highly creepy couple, let’s just say.

Release date: March 20, 2022

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3

The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent

Nicolas Cage is Nicolas Cage, sorta, in this buddy comedy with Pedro Pascal/meta commentary on fame/chance for the star to make fun of himself while sipping drinks on location in a tropical locale.

Release date: April 22, 2022

The trailer kinda gives the premise away, but while helping to clear out her late grandma’s house and exploring the gorgeous wilderness outside, a little girl runs into her exact doppelgänger. Get ready, because this film is gorgeous and will make you cry.

Release date: April 22, 2022

Queer rom-com right this way! Paige (Rowan Blanchard) has been crushing on a classmate so hard for such a long time—so she decides to try out for track in order to get close. Oh yea, and then she starts training with her crush’s sister and starts to feel…conflicted about whom she rlly likes.

Release date: April 29, 2022

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Think of it like Booksmart, but with less comedy and more luuurve. Auden goes to spend the summer with her dad to live a little before heading off to college, meets fellow insomniac Eli, and goes on a bunch of nighttime adventures. You see where this is going.

Release date: May 6, 2022

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7

Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness

This film kinda requires that you’re caught up on Marvel films (and WandaVision), but with horror legend Sam Raimi directing and Benedict Cumberbatch predictably awesome, it’s an epic story about—as you’d imagine—the multiverse and why you shouldn’t mess with it.

Release date: May 6, 2022

A depressingly timely look at a young French woman seeking an abortion during a time when it was still illegal in France. Go in knowing it’s kind of a brutal watch, but rlly important and rlly deserving of all the awards it’s won.

Release date: May 6, 2022

Set during World War II, a team of British operatives tries to play a huge trick on the Nazis involving…a dead body?? With Colin Firth, Kelly Macdonald, Johnny Flynn (Mr. Darcy in Emma.), and Jason Isaacs, it’s filled to the brim with hot people cosplaying in old-timey costumes.

Release date: May 6, 2022

A remake of the Stephen King horror film, Zac Efron is the hot dad of a girl who can start fires with her mind. And, because it’s Stephen King, really scary stuff happens. Bring popcorn.

Release date: May 13, 2022

11

Downton Abbey: A New Era

A sequel to the 2019 film, the Crawley family is headed to France after the dowager countess inherits (what else??) a villa. For those who love the whole DA saga, this is apparently just as good…just have the tissues handy.

Release date: May 18, 2022

If you love films with a horrifying premise, wow, do I have the movie for you: After her husband dies, a woman goes to a remote village, where literally all the men have the same face (played by Rory Kinnear). Can someone watch this and tell me if I can handle it, pls?

Release date: May 20, 2022

People have been waiting to watch this film for literally years (seriously, since its original release date in 2019). So if you like Tom Cruise, action movies, the first film, or just OTT flying sequences, you’re gonna wanna watch this movie.

Release date: May 24, 2022

14

The Bob’s Burgers Movie

The addictive, fan-fave TV show is on the big screen for their very own summer vacay—only, their summer consists of a sinkhole, a mystery, and a lot of burger-related shenanigans.

Release date: May 27, 2022

K, so, if you’re not into body horror, maybe skip this one. But the latest from David Cronenberg (The Fly) looks like it’s about transformations and mutations (ick) as humans integrate synthetic material into their bodies (ick). Oh, and Kristen Stewart’s in it.

Release date: June TBD, 2022

16

The Phantom of the Open

Golf might be kinda boring, but the story of Maurice Flitcroft (Mark Rylance), a British shipyard worker who took up golfing at a late age, shot the worst round in Open history, and went to increasingly wild lengths to keep attending, is anything but.

Release date: June 3, 2022

A bunch of queer BFFs take their annual trip to Fire Island, and rom-com shenanigans ensue. Thanks to Joel Kim Booster (who writes and stars), it’s both hilarious and sweet. Oh, and it was loosely inspired by Pride and Prejudice, so you’re gonna want to watch.

Release date: June 3, 2022

This looks *terrifying*, TBH. Julia (Maika Monroe) moves to Bucharest with her boyfriend, only to feel like she’s constantly being watched and followed by a creepy neighbor. Watch this one with the lights on.

Release date: June 3, 2022

This award-winning Afrofuturistic sci-fi is apparently a visually gorgeous film, a queer love story, and a poignant and thoughtful…musical? In a futuristic dystopia, a hacking collective looks to overthrow an authoritarian government—and a runaway and a miner fall in love.

Release date: June 3, 2022

Think of this more like an Uncut Gems kind of Adam Sandler movie: He’s a washed-up basketball scout who recruits and trains an up-and-coming player (Juancho Hernangómez). Cue the inspiring sports music.

Release date: June 10, 2022

This satire about the politics of movie-making also stars Penelope Cruz and Antonio Banderas as two horrible (and hot) people trying to make an art movie together. Will watch, no notes.

Release date: June 17, 2022

22

Good Luck to You, Leo Grande

Emma Thompson (my queen) apparently goes full frontal in this movie about a housewife who wants to spice up her sex life with the help of an escort. If that’s not enough to entice you, it’s apparently a super-sex-positive comedy. Again, will watch, no notes.

Release date: June 17, 2022

We’ve all seen Toy Story, now watch Chris Evans take on the real character of Buzz Lightyear and actually go on space adventures. Also, Keke Palmer, James Brolin, Taika Waititi, and Uzo Aduba lend their impressive vocal talents.

Release date: June 22, 2022

Ppl are already buzzing about Austin Butler, who—if you haven’t watched the trailer yet—looks literally so much like Elvis Presley it’s scary. And he sings the actual songs! Oh, and an unrecognizable Tom Hanks in a fat suit is there too.

Release date: June 24, 2022

25

Marcel the Shell With Shoes On

If you loved that lil guy from the 2010 movie, great news: Marcel (who is a shell with shoes on, voiced by Jenny Slate) is back and looking for family in this coming-of-age mockumentary that’s guaranteed to make you cry.

Release date: June 24, 2022

26

Thor: Love and Thunder

Because Ragnarok was the funniest Marvel film to date (I will not be taking questions), and this one has the same lead (Chris Hemsworth), same director (Taika Waititi), and the same kind of space shenanigans, I’m already in.

Release date: July 8, 2022

27

Where the Crawdads Sing

If you’ve read the bestseller, you know this is an epic tale about an isolated “marsh girl” who has to fend for herself when her family abandons her. If you haven’t, it’s got romance, murder intrigue, and Daisy Edgar-Jones.

Release date: July 15, 2022

Listen, you’re coming for Brad Pitt, but you’re staying for Joey King, Brian Tyree Henry, Zazie Beetz, Michael Shannon, and Sandra Bullock. Oh, and the premise of an assassin thriller on a bullet train, ofc.

Release date: July 15, 2022

Jordan Peele’s latest? Say less. Also, we don’t know a whole bunch about the film except that something paranormal happens to ranch owners James and Jill Haywood, and it looks like I’m not gonna be able to sleep for a week afterwards.

Release date: July 22, 2022

This dark comedy about a deadly party game is about backstabbing, literally and figuratively. Let Pete Davidson, current paramour of Kim Kardashian, sell you with this line explaining his appeal: “I just look like I fuck, you know what I mean? And that’s the vibe I like to put out there.”

Release date: August 5, 2022

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