When I was kid dreaming of adulthood, I imagined something that looked like all nine glorious seasons of Friends. My best friends would live across the hall (possibly with some bird pets); I'd be well-dressed with very shiny hair; and my freedom from school and parental rules would provide plenty of opportunity for getting into and out of trouble in 22-minute spurts. As it tends to do, adulthood came crashing down. And the only way in which it resembles my favorite Must See TV sitcom is in the unhealthy amount of coffee I drink. I wished being a kid away too fast, I now realize. I didn't adequately appreciate that time in my life when the bills, the house, and the keeping things together were someone else's problem. Until science grants us the time machine, I know of one foolproof way of feeling like a kid again: watching the movies you grew up with. Streaming services have made that targeted regression easy. These 17 childhood favorite movies are on Netflix right now.
Watching one of these movies is the equivalent to stepping back into my childhood home and smelling that specific, one-of-a-kind smell. It's kicking my shoes off at the door, looking at the peeling posters on my wall, and snuggling with the family dog. These are comfort movies of the best kind; the kind that make me forget about the existence of health insurance premiums and office politics, even if it's just for a few hours. Read on to see if any of these Netflix selections make your forever young movie list.
1. The Princess Bride
It's a fairy tale for kids who think they're too old and sophisticated for fairy tales. Timeless and quotable, The Princess Bride is a forever favorite.
2. Robin Hood
It doesn't get more nostalgic than classic Disney animation. Bonus: this musical masterpiece features a roguish, foxy Robin Hood, who I'm not ashamed to admit I had a bit of a crush on. Still do.
3. The Little Rascals
The He-Man Woman Hater's Club was revived for a modern audience with this obscenely adorable adaptation. Darla was feminist goals before I even quite knew what that meant.
4. Scooby Doo
Then: Watched Scooby Doo for the CGI dog and the puns. Now: Watch Scooby Doo for the barely concealed innuendoes and drug references.
5. The Land Before Time
If you can handle it.
Your dolls may have been handed over to the nice people at Goodwill long ago, but the movie based on the toys still survives. It's not very good, but it does the job.
7. Good Burger
From All That to Good Burger, Kenan and Kel basically were comedy to me. I still have faith they'll reunite for a sequel some day.
8. Escape To Witch Mountain
America's future president of everything, Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, anchors the sequel. Even so, it can't compare to the weirdness and low-tech wonder of the original 1975 live-action Disney sci-fi flick.
9. Camp Rock
The Jonas Brothers and Demi Lovato stretch themselves to play...a band of brothers and an aspiring pop singer. But who needs Oscar-worthy performances when the songs are this catchy and the teen melodrama is so delicious?
10. Charlotte's Web
Not to get dark, but the animated Charlotte's Web is responsible for some of my earliest impressions of death. Those barnyard animals really knew what life was about, you know?
11. The Cheetah Girls
Fifth Harmony can take a seat, because these sisters will always be my favorite girl group.
12. Spy Kids
Spy Kids launched a successful family franchise, but the first one will always be the best.
13. High School Musical
A formative experience. If Gabriella Montez and Troy Bolton had never met at that ski lodge karaoke party, life for Disney Channel kids would never have been the same.
14. High School Musical 2
The saga continues over one eventful summer break. Remember how Chad performs a whole song and dance number about how he doesn't dance?
15. Pee Wee's Big Adventure
A little scary and a lot absurdist, Pee Wee's big screen outing is impossible to explain and impossible not to love.
"Right here." You teared up a little bit just reading that, didn't you?
Pre-controversy Shia LaBeouf takes on a Louis Sachar hero in the wacky and heartfelt Holes. It's even better than the book, frankly.
When adulthood gets you done, Netflix is there with these and other throwback movies that are sure to give you some relief.
Images: stydixa, dee-pressen, crp70, sandissquishy, southerncomfortzone93/Tumblr; Giphy (12)