The Beach, Best Beach Movies

20th Century Fox

Oh sure, a trip to the ocean this summer sounds fun. Until you think about the crowds, the heat, the sunburn and the sand in your…well…places there shouldn't be sand. Why ruin a good vacay by going outside? Instead, hit the beach without ever leaving your couch, with our 10 must-see seashore movies.

Once we went fishing for our faves, we netted lots of options. After all, Hollywood has long had a warm spot in its cold dark heart for sunny sand-and-surf stories. Why? For one, photogenic locales like California, Australia and especially Hawaii (the setting for almost half the flicks on our list) provide postcard-worthy backdrops. No CGI effects could match the unspoiled beauty of places like Kauai.

Audiences also enjoy the gorgeous scenery, and by that we mean sexy stars showing skin in skimpy (or nonexistent) beachwear. Why scour the Internet or tabloids for revealing pics of celebs when you can catch these frolicking hotties: Kate Bosworth and Michelle Rodriguez rocking bikinis in Blue Crush; Leonardo DiCaprio and Virginie Ledoyen doing the underwater nasty amid glowing shrimp in The Beach; and Keanu Reeves and Patrick Swayze perfectly filling out their wetsuits in Point Break. Cowabunga, babes!

Plus, seaside settings provide plenty of dramatic plot possibilities—scary shipwrecks, exciting surfing competitions, fearsome pirates and the best-laid vacation plans gone horribly awry. We can relate…at least to that last one.

And we haven't even mentioned all the icky sea creatures just chomping at the bit to attack our protagonists. Piranhas and jellyfish and sharks, oh my! And stingrays and squid and crabs and eels… Ugh, yeah, we're staying on the couch.

Have we whetted your appetite like a great white circling blood in the water? Then suit up (or let it all hang out) and dive into our gallery of Best Beach Movies. But be warned: There's no lifeguard on duty, and you could end up a Cast Away or a tasty Jaws snack!

When you're done surfing and come up for air, let us know your favorites—or which seaworthy journeys we left off our list.

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