I don’t think I’m alone when I say that basically the only thing I got psyched about when Fall rolled around in grade school was the new art supplies I would inevitably dupe my mom into buying me. Why I felt I needed a brand new ruler every single year for nine years is completely beyond me. As I got older, I started to really enjoy the season itself. Hot toddy’s? Stormy nights? Leaves changing colors? Tailgates? Warm brie? Pumpkin carving? Um, yeah, sign me up.
Being from Seattle, one of my favorite parts of Autumn is the absolutely abysmal weather. Give me an overcast sky with a light drizzle, something pumpkin in my hand, a pair of Hunters and an oversized sweater and there will be a smile on my face until Starbuck’s red cups come out the day after Thanksgiving. When the air is so chilly that you can see your breath while walking on campus, there’s nothing I want to do more than to curl up with a movie and a cup of hot cocoa. There’s just something about a good fall flick. Once September rolls around, we’re forced to begrudgingly pack away our bikinis until Spring Break, and start craving films that are a little more substantial than Pitch Perfect 2 (which was a flawless work of cinematography, don’t get it twisted). Here are my picks for the seven Autumn classics that should be at the very top of your need-to-see list.
1. The Social Network
Or as I think it would be more accurately titled, “How I Was Introduced To The Winklevi.” Technically, it covers Mark Zuckerberg’s genius in the creation of Facebook, as well as the subsequent betrayals and lawsuits that arise from him allegedly screwing over a plethora of people. That aspect of the movie is pretty good, if you care about things like plot. The movie really comes into its own once Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss are introduced. Played by Armie Hammer, they’re hot, blonde, and WASPy AF. Plus, they row crew and are in the most exclusive members-only club on campus. The movie takes place largely at Harvard, where the architecture and student body look like it comes straight out of a Brooks Brothers catalog. Need I say more?
2. St. Elmo’s Fire
You’ve seen “The Breakfast Club,” you’ve seen “Sixteen Candles,” but have you seen St. Elmo’s Fire? This film follows a group of Brat Packers who graduated Georgetown and are attempting to navigate the postgrad world of Washington D.C. the following fall. It has the stereotypes, the love interest, and the relatability that draw you into John Hughes’ films, with a more mature subject matter that you’ll appreciate now that you’re in college and probably hella felling like you’ve got no idea where your life is going. Teen angst for the older set.
3. The Blind Side
Do not lie to me and say that you did not watch this movie and aspire to be Leigh Anne Tuohy. She is the matriarch of the Tuohy family, a real life Kappa Delta alumna, and both a mom and interior designer. Her fashion sense, morality, and sass are all on point. Taking place over several years, but centering around football season, this is a movie that I’m almost positive is physically impossible not to love. The characters are charming, the message is positive, and the scenes on the field will make you seriously wish you went to Michael Oher’s high school.
4. Animal House
This movie is the reason half the freshman boys across the country have black and white posters of some random dude in a crewneck that says “College,” holding a half gal of Jack Daniels. This movie is the reason people chant, “Toga! Toga!” This movie is the reason (God Damn) Independents exist as a term. In short, it is an hour and forty-nine minutes of fraternal debauchery and prank-playing with a whole lot of heart. If you haven’t already, you’ll soon have fallen in love with Bluto, Pinto, Otter, and the rest of the Delta gang.
5. You’ve Got Mail
You cannot go wrong in casting Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan alongside one another. The only thing that can enhance this duo further is the backdrop of New York City in Autumn. Meg plays an independent bookstore owner, the foil to Tom’s megastore tycoon persona. They fall in anonymous love over the internet, while concurrently hating one another in real life. This film is a quintessential ‘90’s rom-com, and is only made better by the vast number of bookstore/coffee shop scenes featured. Plus, when you hear Tom ask Meg, “Don’t you love New York in the fall? It makes me want to buy school supplies. I would send you a bouquet of newly sharpened pencils if I knew your name and address.” Even the coldest heart can’t help but melt.
Did you really think there could be a list of fall CLASSICS without this masterpiece mentioned somewhere? Sure, by now you’ve realized that it’s gotten cheesier since the first time you saw it when you were eight, but if you don’t watch it at least once during the month of October, you ought to do a little priority re-evaluation. Marnie is an OG bad bitch, sneaking her younger siblings off to Halloweentown when her mom tells her that witch training is a no-go. Kind of like when you try and sneak a sister on social probation into an event after Standards bans her! She also saves the world, or whatever, so yeah, can we get this girl a bid?
7. Dead Poets Society
This film features the late, great Robin Williams and is a fall necessity. Set at a privileged boys prep school, Williams stars as Professor Keating, an English teacher who teaches the boys about poetry and life. It will definitely give you the feels in the best way possible. Nostalgic in the best sense, this movie will make you yearn for your New England boarding school days (even if you went to public school in California). It features lots of tweed, and leaves you with lots to think about.
So hit up your flavor of the month, spike a pot of hot apple cider, and cue up one of these movies to get into the spirit, because it’s #CuffingSZN and I know you’re not trying to Netflix and chill alone. .