The Most Ennui-Filled

Dustin Hoffman lazily floats around in a pool as he contemplates his post-graduate existence and his disdain for this bourgeois life in The Graduate. His days are filled with a torrid affair with an older woman and the offer of a secure corporate job, but that's so boring. He'd rather just float around in a pool and slowly turn lobster-red while Simon and Garfunkel plays in the background. If you're going to bask in your "so-over-it" attitude, you better have a good soundtrack on hand.

The Ruined Kids' Party

In an attempt to cling to his youthful glory days, Will Ferrell embodies the ultimate man-child in Old School. This includes starting an off-campus fraternity with his other man-child buddies, eschewing basic responsibilities, and accidentally shooting himself in the neck with a high-power tranquilizer during a kid's pool party and subsequently acting like a doped-up Godzilla. Bonus points for The Graduate homage at the end, when Ferrell sinks into the pool to the sound of "The Sound of Silence." Lesson: Be a responsible drug user, especially at the pool!

The Sexual Awakening

You've seen this scene a thousand times in different iterations, and probably emulated it or hoped someone would emulate it for you, sultrily stepping out of a pool while water suggestively dripped all over in slow-motion. You have Fast Times at Ridgemont High and Phoebe Cates with her fire-red bikini to thank for that.

 

 

 

The PSA About Eating by the Pool

Caddyshack is mostly about golf, but there's one scene in particular that sends a very important pool etiquette lesson. An innocuous candy bar that's carelessly thrown away lands in the water and suggests something much more sinister, causing mass hysteria. Do everyone a favor and just keep the pool free of any foreign objects, edible or not.

The Shakespearean Seduction

Pop culture looooves a pool meet-cute as the perfect location to get the sparks flying. In Romeo + Juliet's case, angsty Leo and Claire Danes let their hormones get the better of them as Shakespeare's eponymous star-crossed lovers. Just make sure your pool date doesn't result in such a high body count.

The Close-But-Not-Quite Seduction

Remember Ryan Phillippe? Yeah, we barely do either, but back in the days of Cruel Intentions the man was credible enough as a ladies' man to try to pull of a pool seduction scene of his own (see above). But alas, Phillippe was no Romeo/DiCaprio, and Reese Witherspoon stops him in his (floating) tracks. She puts a break on the pool shenanigans and gets the upper hand in their sexual cat-and-mouse game. Still a good pool scene, though.

 

The Ultimate Party

The Great Gatsby was all about a tortured, lonely man trying to gain love through the accumulation of material possessions, and while that's quite sad, it did make for some great parties. Bootleg champagne, dancers, big brass bands, and a self-destructive attitude make for a great pool party. But all parties must eventually end—as Gatsby's does when he's found dead and floating in his pool.

The Frenchiest

Synchronized swimming and young lesbian lusting: Water Lilies couldn't be more French unless it brought a baguette and some brie to the pool party. Ambition, teenage insecurity, plenty of time spent in pools and changing rooms, and young love coalesce into a film that'll make you think twice before dismissing synchronized swimming as a silly sport.

This article was originally written by Luisa Rollenhagen and appeared here.