American Pregame: The Best Movie Scenes for Your Fourth of July

I love the Fourth of July as much as any holiday in the calendar year.

History Began 1776

It’s a celebration of our nation’s independence, a time to get together with friends and family, a reason to eat ALL THE HOT DOGS AND BURGERS YOU WANT, and a solid excuse to blow shit up.

(If you work in Illinois law enforcement, I totally don’t have fireworks from either Wisconsin or Indiana in my trunk.)

To properly prepare you for your Independence Day festivities (and to have some BBQ conversation material), I have compiled a number of movie clips that will have you proud to be double fisting brats and/or American Flag decorated Budweiser cans. You will more than likely be quoting these scenes later (or right now) with your friends, so why not get your lines down now…

1. Independence Day (1996)

This film should get the A Christmas Story “24-hour marathon” treatment on at least 3 networks every July 4th.

2. Animal House (1978)

“The issue here is not that we broke a few rules…”. A scene and film that America’s founding fathers would be proud of…because F AUTHORITY!

3. Rocky IV (1985)

On the heels of the release of the trailer for the new Rocky film, Creed, revisit the epic montages and eloquent post-match speeches that put Sly Stallone on the map. You’ll likely be doing your own impressions anyway.

4. Top Gun (1986)

In contrast to the previous Rocky IV scene (and Russian relations), and a year after…

5. The Great Escape (1963)

My absolute favorite “Fourth of July” scene. In a high level security Nazi POW camp, the only 3 Americans in a prison filled with British officers celebrate by serving moonshine to all. The irony and symbolism is incredible.

6. The South Park Movie (1999)

As the late great Robin Williams once said “Canada is like a loft apartment over a really great party.” So why not take a friendly jab at our neighbors to the north, and then cheers them immediately after.

7. Team America (2004)

If you’re going to include one Matt & Trey, might as well include the other that is AS AMERICAN AS IT GETS. Couldn’t choose just one scene, so why not go with the montage?

8. The Sandlot (1993)

(Apologies for the quality but it’s the best I could find)

There are few scenes in cinematic history that could properly capture a kid’s childhood on the Fourth of July like this one…and of course, Benjamin Franklin Rodriguez.

9. The Patriot (2000)

This one’s too easy…While Mel Gibson isn’t anybody’s favorite representative of anything these days, rallying your troops to never retreat with the symbol of your nation is still a nice touch.

10. A Few Good Men (1992)

No explanation needed…just Jack being Jack.

11. Field of Dreams (1989)

What’s more mythical in America than baseball? Opening Day is the closest thing to the Fourth of July in terms of pageantry and celebration that you’ll find in this country. So why not commemorate this weekend with one of the all-time great monologues for the sport…?

12. Pirate Radio (2009)

“Although our dreams of freedom have died a tragic death, the Hollies are still alive.”

Along the lines of gently lifting a middle finger to authority…I love this scene for the sole reason that the only American on the ship, Philip Seymour Hoffman, is the one to push the envelop even further while this band of British Rock N’ Roll DJs revolt against a government that doesn’t like good music. A modern Great Escape moment, if you will…

13. Almost Famous (2000)

When it comes to rebellious teens and young adults, never underestimate the power of music…or Simon and Garfunkel.

14. Network (1976)

In a world of social media and free speech, you’re allowed to get mad…get mad as hell and know your life has value. That’s what your founding fathers and mothers did. (Yeah, this clip makes you feel feelings.)

15. The Simpsons Movie (2007)

The Simpsons and Schwarzenegger. That is all.

16. Miracle (2004)

Who do you play for?

17. Coming to America (1988)

It’s a beautiful thing when an African Prince (that you didn’t get a scam email from) can appreciate the little things when he first reaches our fine nation.

18. Inglorious Basterds (2009)

When I first saw this film, the entire theater gave an ovation when Quentin Tarantino gave us his spin on WWII history and Hitler’s fate. That was fantastic

19. Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014)

Hard not to include the most American superhero in this ultra American compilation. Also worth noting that this is my favorite scene in my favorite Marvel movie.

20. To Kill a Mockingbird (1962)

It’s one of the most important in film history…and one that is still relevant in today’s America.

21. Jaws (1975)

Just like how Die Hard is a Christmas movie, Jaws is very much a Fourth of July film. I mean, that’s when it takes place after all.

Have anymore movies and scenes in mind? Let me know on Twitter @Mike_PiFF03.

#TBT Year in Review: 1992

In the year that Washington Nationals star Bryce Harper was born…

Bryce home run gif

  • President George H.W. Bush threw up on the Japanese Prime Minister on live television.
  • The Cold War was formally declared over.
  • The Winter Olympics were held in Albertville, France. 
  • Bill Clinton was elected the 42nd President of the United States.
  • Atari was officially discontinued. 

And in the worlds of Movies, Music, and Sports…

Movies

Comedy

My Cousin Vinny, Encino Man, Sister Act, Home Alone 2, The Mighty Ducks, Honey I Blew Up the Kids, Beethoven, The Player, Singles, Captain Ron, Class Act, Mo’ Money, Revenge of the Nerds III, Boomerang, Toys, Housesitter, Mr. Baseball, White Men Can’t Jump, Ladybugs, The Muppet Christmas Carol AND…

Wayne’s World

Action/Thriller

Patriot Games, Basic Instinct, Under Siege, Alien 3, The Hand That Rocks the Cradle, Lethal Weapon 3, Raising Cain, Bram Stoker’s Dracula, Batman Returns, Poison Ivy, Candy Man, Live Wire, Freejack, Rapid Fire, Bad Lieutenant, Passenger 57, AND…

Reservoir Dogs

Drama

Scent of a Woman, Glengarry Glen Ross, The Last of the Mohicans, A River Runs Through It, The Bodyguard, Juice, Lorenzo’s Oil, Far and Away, Malcolm X, The Crying Game, School Ties, Of Mice And Men, Stalin, Damage, Newsies, To Be The Best, Gladiator, Sinatra, Hoffa, Chaplin, Zebrahead, The Cutting Edge, Forever Young, AND…

A Few Good Men

The 65th Academy Awards

Best Actor

  • Clint Eastwood, Unforgiven
  • Stephen Rea, The Crying Game
  • Denzel Washington, Malcom X
  • Robert Downey Jr., Chaplin
  • Al Pacino, Scent of a Woman – Winner

Best Supporting Actor

  • Jaye Davidson, The Crying Game
  • Jack Nicholson, A Few Good Men
  • Al Pacino, Glengarry Glen Ross
  • David Paymer, Mr. Saturday Night
  • Gene Hackman, Unforgiven – Winner 

Best Actress

  • Catherine Deneuve, Indochine
  • Mary McDonnell, Passion Fish
  • Michelle Pfeiffer, Love Field
  • Susan Sarandon, Lorenzo’s Oil
  • Emma Thompson, Howards End – Winner

Best Supporting Actress

  • Vanessa Redgrave, Howards End
  • Miranda Richardson, Damage
  • Judy Davis, Husbands and Wives
  • Joan Plowright, Enchanted April
  • Marisa Tomei, My Cousin Vinny – Winner

Best Picture

  • The Crying Game
  • A Few Good Men
  • Howard’s End
  • Scent of a Woman
  • Unforgiven – Winner

Music

Rock Albums

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Hip Hop Albums

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Pop Albums

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Billboard Year-End Top 25 of 1992

1. “End of the Road” – Boyz II Men

2. “Baby Got Back” – Sir Mix-A-Lot

3. “Jump” – Kriss Kross

4. “Save the Best for Last” – Vanessa Williams

5. “Baby-Baby-Baby” – TLC

6. “Tears In Heaven” – Eric Clapton

7. “My Lovin (You’re Never Gonna Get It)” – En Vogue

8. “Under the Bridge” – Red Hot Chili Peppers

9. “All 4 Love” – Color Me Badd

10. “Just Another Day” – John Secada

11. “To Be With You” – Mr. Big

12. “I Love Your Smile” – Shanice

13. “I’m Too Sexy” – Right Said Fred

14. “Black or White” – Michael Jackson

15. “Achy Breaky Heart” – Billy Ray Cyrus

16. “I’ll Be There” – Mariah Carey

17. “November Rain” – Guns N’ Roses

18. “Life is a Highway” – Tom Cochrane

19. “Remember the Time” – Michael Jackson

20. “Finally” – CeCe Peniston

21. “This Used To Be My Playground” – Madonna

22. “Sometimes Love Just Ain’t Enough” – Patty Smyth

23. “Can’t Let Go” – Mariah Carey

24. “Jump Around” – House of Pain

25. “Diamonds and Pearls” – Prince and the New Power Generation

Sports

Baseball

League Leaders

Batting

Average: Edgar Martinez (SEA) – .343

Hits: Kirby Puckett (MIN) – 210

Home Runs: Juan Gonzalez (TEX) – 43

RBI: Cecil Fielder (DET) – 124

OPS: Barry Bonds (PIT) – 1.080

Stolen Bases: Marquis Grissom (MON) – 78

Pitching

Wins: Kevin Brown (TEX) & Jack Morris (TOR) – 21

ERA: Bill Swift (SF) – 2.08

Strikeouts: David Cone (NYM & TOR) – 261

Complete Games: Jack McDowell (CHW) – 13

Shutouts: Roger Clemens (BOS), Tom Glavine (ATL) & David Cone – 5

Saves: Dennis Eckersley (OAK) – 51

MVP

AL – Dennis Eckersley (OAK)

NL – Barry Bonds (PIT)

CY Young

AL – Dennis Eckersley (OAK)

NL – Greg Maddux (CHC)

Rookie of the Year

AL – Pat Litasch (MIL)

NL – Eric Karros (LAD) 

World Series: Toronto Blue Jays over Atlanta Braves (4-2)

Basketball

NCAA

Final Four:

(1) Duke, (6) Michigan, (4) Cincinnati and (2) Indiana

National Championship:

(1) Duke over (6) Michigan 71-51

NBA

League Leaders:

Points Per Game: Michael Jordan (CHI) – 30.1

Rebounds Per Game: Dennis Rodman (DET) – 18.7

Assists Per Game: John Stockton (UTAH) – 13.7

All-NBA Team:

Clyde Drexler (POR)

Michael Jordan (CHI)

Karl Malone (UTAH)

Chris Mullin (GS)

Davis Robinson (SA)

MVP: Michael Jordan (CHI)

Rookie of the Year: Larry Johnson (CHA)

NBA Finals: Chicago Bulls over Portland Trailblazers (4-2)

Football

NCAA

Heisman Trophy

Charlie Ward (Florida State) & Gino Toretta (Miami)

National Champion

Alabama over Miami 34-13 in the Sugar Bowl 

NFL

League Leaders

Passing Yards: Dan Marino (MIA) – 4,116

Passing Touchdowns: Steve Young (SF) – 25

Passer Rating: Steve Young (SF) – 107.0

Rushing Yards: Emmitt Smith (DAL) – 1,713

Rushing Touchdowns: Emmitt Smith (DAL) – 18

Receiving Yards: Sterling Sharpe (GB) – 1,461

Receiving Touchdowns: Sterling Sharpe (GB) – 13

Receptions: Sterling Sharpe (GB) – 108

AP MVP: Steve Young (SF)

Super Bowl: Dallas Cowboys over Buffalo Bills 52-17

Hockey

League Leaders

Goals: Brett Hull (STL) – 70

Assists: Wayne Gretzky (LA) – 90

Points: Mario Lemieux (PIT) – 131

Hart Memorial Trophy: Mark Messier (NYR)

Stanley Cup: Pittsburgh over Chicago (4-0)

Did I miss anything? Let me know on Twitter @Mike_PiFF03.

Checkout past #TBT Years in Review 

2011

2006

1998

1989

1987