Today is National Swimming Pool Day! Since we live right in the heart of Chicago, swimming pools are quite the luxury for my family. My kids only get to have fun in a pool a few days a year when we’re on vacation. So I’m going to use the 9 movies below as a reminder to myself that, um, maybe we’re not really missing out…

Caddyshack – In one of the most infamous movie scenes of all time—complete with Jaws-like instrumentals—swimmers at a country club mistake a floating Baby Ruth candy bar in the pool for, um, #2 (or, as one child shouts, “DOODY!!!!”) … and all hell breaks loose. Only Bill Murray’s Carl the groundskeeper can bring the drama to its appropriate and disgusting close.

Fast Times at Ridgemont High – In 1982, this pool scene was permanently burned into the memories of many a hormone-fueled teenager: In the awkward Brad’s (Judge Reinhold) daydream, the teeny-red-bikinied Linda (Phoebe Cates) emerges from the water in slow motion to “Moving in Stereo” by the Cars, surrounded by mist.

The Sandlot – Sticking with male fantasies for a moment, in this 1993 coming-of-age classic, a boy fakes drowning in order to get mouth-to-mouth resuscitation from his crush, the older and mysterious Wendy Peffercorn (Marley Shelton).

Barb & Star Go to Del Mar – This whole movie is set at a resort, so there’s too many pool scenes to call out. But whenever Kristen Wiig is involved, you know it’s going to be hilarious.

Almost Famous – Who can forget Stillwater guitarist Russell (Billy Crudup) standing on the roof at a house party and declaring, “I am a golden god!” and “I’m on drugs!” before flinging himself into the pool?

Ferris Bueller’s Day Off – After Ferris’s (Matthew Broderick) BFF Cameron (Alan Ruck) goes into shock at the thought of facing his father after the teens’ joy ride in his dad’s prized car, Cameron sits in a catatonic state poolside until eventually falling in headfirst. Ferris of course saves him, leading Cameron to sniffle, “Ferris Bueller you’re my hero” … and later admit that he was just testing Ferris to see what he’d do.  

Romeo & Juliet – In Baz Luhrmann’s 1996 take on the Shakespearian tragedy, young Romeo (Leonardo DiCaprio) and Juliet (Claire Danes) finally take their new romance to the next level … in a pool. It’s the only movie in which it makes sense that someone would NOT want to marry Paul Rudd (Dave Paris).

The Great Gatsby – Baz and Leo grace our list once again, this time for the 2013 adaptation of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s celebrated novel. However, discussing the pool scenes would involve massive spoilers, so I’ll leave the movie for to you to watch (or rewatch).

In the Heights – I’ll end with my favorite pool scene—one of the few on this list that is actually happy! When residents of Washington Heights learn that someone won the lottery, they break out into an amazing, coordinated song and dance in the neighborhood’s massive community pool. Over 90 dancers treat the audience to every kind of dance style you can think of, and it is one of the most joyful sequences I’ve ever seen on film.

Did I forget anything? I hope you are able to take a refreshing dip (with no drama) in celebration of National Swimming Pool Day!

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