Summer has arrived, fashionably late as usual, planting booze-drenched golden kisses all over the UK like an over-familiar, rarely seen aunt. It’s also going to stick around for at least two more weeks, giving everyone plenty of time to turn themselves a deep mahogany or, at the very least, lobster pink.
Elemental forces can play a big role in the cinema, so here are 10 movies in which the hot weather deserves a mention in the credits.
The sweltering African temperatures force Jim Carrey’s animal sleuth to squirm his way out of the rubber anus of a giant robotic rhino in the best scene of this otherwise so-so comedy sequel.
While it’s best to be slightly embarrassed by our colonial past, there are some pretty impressive events from this period that are worth remembering, if not celebrating. The Battle of Rorke’s Drift is one of them, and the movie Zulu does a good job of recreating the ridiculous fact that 150 British soldiers saw off up to 4000 Zulu warriors. Sure, the battle took place in January, but the sun is always shining in this film and fighting in massive, red, long sleeve tops must have been hot work.
Danny Boyle’s movie sends Cillian Murphy and a crew of foolhardy astronauts on a mission to fire a bomb into our dying sun. Which means that, without a doubt, this has the hottest temperatures of any film on the list, reflector shield-thingy be damned.
7) Cast Away
Stranded on a desert island, Tom Hanks plays a man who contents himself with growing a beard and dicking about with a volley ball. There should have been at least one scene in which he exclaimed “I am definitely too hot”, just to really get across a sense of the setting.
This is without a doubt the best film ever made about an afternoon. Al Pacino and John Cazale get hot and bothered in this 1975 thriller, turning the media attention in their favour as they take hostages at a bank while the temperature outside keeps tensions running high.
Tina Turner’s desert-based battle arena is the venue for the driest, dustiest entry in the Mad Max series. It’s also the silliest of the original three films and sure to satisfy anyone who likes their post-apocalyptic movies.
Watching an upper class English chap go mad with power in the Middle East is made thoroughly engrossing in this much loved classic. Although after staring at the sun-bleached dunes for over three hours you’ll be longing to escape into the cool interior of your local sheik’s tent.
3) Falling Down
The combination of summer heat and an LA traffic jam finally causes Michael Douglas’ buttoned-down office worker to flip out and go on an un-PC rampage across the City of Angels. The half-hearted pursuit from Robert Duval’s soon-to-retire policeman is dull, but the unlikely adventures of the racist protagonist are endless fun.
After focusing on a Christmas setting in the first two films, the Die Hard franchise switch to a high summer setting for its third outing. At least John McClane has a legitimate reason to strip down to his vest this time.
This Australian classic is undergoing a bit of a revival at the moment and it’s well worth a watch, particularly as it’s been uploaded in its entirety to YouTube. Boiling hot desert scenery, freezing cold beer and brutal masculinity all take their toll on a mild-mannered British teacher.