Best-Reviewed Summer Blockbusters by Year Since 1975

by | August 2, 2016 | Comments

When it comes to big summer movies, the opinions of critics and audiences are always out of sync. Right? Not so fast. Using our weighted formula, we at Rotten Tomatoes decided to spotlight the best-reviewed wide releases from each summer since 1975 — the year Jaws kicked off the blockbuster era — and it turns out that many of the big winners with the pundits have become perennial favorites with regular moviegoers as well.

1970s | 1980s | 1990s | 2000s | 2010s


Toy Story 3 (2010)

Adjusted Score: 107.631%
Critics Consensus: Deftly blending comedy, adventure, and honest emotion, Toy Story 3 is a rare second sequel that really works.
Synopsis: "Toy Story 3" welcomes Woody, Buzz and the whole gang back to the big screen as Andy prepares to depart... [More]
Directed By: Lee Unkrich

Adjusted Score: 106.846%
Critics Consensus: Thrilling, powerfully acted, and visually dazzling, Deathly Hallows Part II brings the Harry Potter franchise to a satisfying -- and suitably magical -- conclusion.
Synopsis: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Part 2, is the final adventure in the Harry Potter film series. The... [More]
Directed By: David Yates (II)

Adjusted Score: 104.961%
Critics Consensus: Thanks to a script that emphasizes its heroes' humanity and a wealth of superpowered set pieces, The Avengers lives up to its hype and raises the bar for Marvel at the movies.
Synopsis: Marvel Studios presents Marvel's The Avengers-the Super Hero team up of a lifetime, featuring iconic Marvel Super Heroes Iron Man,... [More]
Directed By:


The World's End (2013)

Adjusted Score: 98.511%
Critics Consensus: Madcap and heartfelt, Edgar Wright's apocalypse comedy The World's End benefits from the typically hilarious Simon Pegg and Nick Frost, with a plethora of supporting players.
Synopsis: The third installment of director Edgar Wright's trilogy of comedies starring Simon Pegg and Nick Frost, following the successes "Shaun... [More]
Directed By: Edgar Wright

Adjusted Score: 104.485%
Critics Consensus: Guardians of the Galaxy is just as irreverent as fans of the frequently zany Marvel comic would expect -- as well as funny, thrilling, full of heart, and packed with visual splendor.
Synopsis: From Marvel, the studio that brought you the global blockbuster franchises of Iron Man, Thor, Captain America and The Avengers,... [More]
Directed By: James Gunn (II)

Adjusted Score: 113.946%
Critics Consensus: With exhilarating action and a surprising amount of narrative heft, Mad Max: Fury Road brings George Miller's post-apocalyptic franchise roaring vigorously back to life.
Synopsis: Filmmaker George Miller gears up for another post-apocalyptic action adventure with Fury Road, the fourth outing in the Mad Max... [More]
Directed By: George Miller

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