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Author
Comicguy1


Member Since: Tue Apr 04, 2017
Posts: 1,511


I think that most of the 80's movies in particular have probably aged and dated the worst. I think that 70's movies like Taxi Driver, The first two Godfathers, Chinatown, etc, are timeless, but I kind of cringe when I rewatch The Star Wars (And even Indiana Jones.) movies, etc. So, what are the best movies from the 80's that have stood the test of time? My favorite movie from the decade would probably be Once Upon A Time In America (The REAL, uncut and unedited version.). I think that Blue Velvet (Another favorite.) would still hold up. Even one of my favorites like The Stepfather (With a FANTASTIC Terry O'Quinn!) doesn't really hold up all that well. I still have to catch Raging Bull, which is considered by many to be the BEST movie of the decade.

What do you guys think?


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Iron Man Unit 007

Moderator

Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
Posts: 5,849


Star Wars and Indiana Jones are fun popcorn flicks.

I think perhaps perceptions of Star Wars may be a bit jaundiced after waht Disney has done with movies 7 and 8

Back to the Future trilogy, always fun to watch especially when you realize that Doc Brown knew or had a good idea of what was to come in those movies.

Wrath of Kahn is about the only Trek movie I can still watch

TRON: always fun

TOP GUN and Days of Thudner: they were dumb then and now





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Menshevik


Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
Posts: 5,072



    Quote:
    I think that most of the 80's movies in particular have probably aged and dated the worst. I think that 70's movies like Taxi Driver, The first two Godfathers, Chinatown, etc, are timeless, but I kind of cringe when I rewatch The Star Wars (And even Indiana Jones.) movies, etc. So, what are the best movies from the 80's that have stood the test of time? My favorite movie from the decade would probably be Once Upon A Time In America (The REAL, uncut and unedited version.). I think that Blue Velvet (Another favorite.) would still hold up. Even one of my favorites like The Stepfather (With a FANTASTIC Terry O'Quinn!) doesn't really hold up all that well. I still have to catch Raging Bull, which is considered by many to be the BEST movie of the decade.



    Quote:
    What do you guys think?


Well, AFAIK Empire Strikes Back still has the reputation of being the best Star Wars movie, and when you ask someone to name a good movie about boxing, chances are they'll either answer Raging Bull (1980) or Rocky (1981).

Comics-related movies from the 1980s include Superman II (probably the last really good superman movie) and Batman, which at least to my mind has held up very well, not least because it also gave rise to the Animated Series, the best Batman adaptation of all (but then I'm one of those people who reacted to Batman Begins with "Why doesn't the US government just throw an atom bomb on Gotham to put it out of its misery?"). Otherwise it was more a case of "so bad that it's good" (Flash Gordon, Heavy Metal) and "so bad that it has to be seen to be believed" (Howard the Duck). And there was When the Wind Blows, which I've not yet seen.

Other Anglophone movies of the 1980s worth considering/a watch

1980
Airplane!
The Blues Brothers (a worldwide cult classic)
1981
An American Werewolf in London
The Great Muppet Caper
The Gods Must Be Crazy
Gregory's Girl
Time Bandits (at least for Terry Gilliam's admirers)
Taxi Driver
1982
Blade Runner (extremely iconic, even if rooted in "Metropolis" to an extent)
Dead Men Don't Wear Plaid
The Draughtsman's Contract (for Peter Greenaway's fans)
E.T. - The Extra-Terrestrial
First Blood (again very iconic, if a niche product)
Gandhi
Tootsie
Victor/Victoria
1983
Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence
Trading Places
Zelig
1984
Amadeus
Beverly Hills Cops (yes, very much an 80s film, but that's not a bad thing)
Ghostbusters (started another successful franchise)
Gremlins
The Muppets Take Manhattan
The Natural (Charlie Brown's favourite movie)
A Passage to India
Romancing the Stone (followed by The Jewel of the Nile and The War of the Roses)
1985
Back to the Future (and Part II in 1989)
Brazil
Cocoon
Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome
Turtle Diary (a personal fave of mine)
1986
Aliens
Crocodile Dundee
Hannah and Her Sisters
Highlander
Labyrinth (still has quite a fandom)
Little Shop of Horrors (another cult classic)
The Mission (classic Morricone score)
Platoon
Ruthless People
The Terminator
This is Spinal Tap
1987
Full Metal Jacket
Good Morning Vietnam
Hamburger Hill
The Last Emperor
Moonstruck (which I love)
The Princess Bride
Wall Street
1988
Beetlejuice
Big
Big Business (a personal fave)
Bull Durham
Dangerous Liaisons
Die Hard (another franchise-starter)
A Fish Called Wanda
Hairspray (cult classic)
Rain Man
Spaceballs
Who Framed Roger Rabbit
1989
Dead Poets Society
Driving Miss Daisy
Glory
Henry V (which kicked off Kenneth Branagh's series of Shakespeare adaptations)
The Little Mermaid
Major League (a guilty pleasure)
When Harry Met Sally...

But let's not forget the films from non-Anglophone countries:
1980
La Boum
The Last Metro
1981
Das Boot
Mephisto
1982
Fitzcarraldo
La Nuit de Varennes (one of my all-time favourites)
The Return of Martin Guerre
1983
Danton
1984
Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind
The Neverending Story
Paris, Texas
1985
Colonel Redl
Come and See
Ran
Shoah
Three Men and a Cradle (remade in 1987 as Three Men and a Baby)
1986
Castle in the Sky
Jean de Florette, and its sequel Manon des Sources
The Name of the Rose
Peking Opera Blues
Rosa Luxemburg
1987
Babette's Feast
Bagdad Café (Out of Rosenheim)
Wings of Desire (Der Himmel über Berlin)
1988
Cinema Paradiso
Grave of the Fireflies
My Neighbor Totoro
Ödipussi
1989
Death of a Tea Master
Kiki's Delivery Service









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The Black Guardian

Moderator

Location: Paragon City, RI
Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008


I know... I know... I'm the unofficial Comicboards.com 80s guy, thus very biased, but...

In my opinion, there's more cringy in the Star Wars prequels than the original trilogy. Also, nothing cringy about the first two Indiana Jones movies. The Wrath of Khan is still awesome.

My short list (yes, short):

A Christmas Story
A Nightmare on Elm Street (well, it hasn't gotten cringier)
Adventures in Babysitting (bah! don't laugh)
After Hours (very unappreciated movie with Griffin Dunne)
Airplane!
Aliens
American Werewolf in London
Beetlejuice
Better Off Dead
Big
Big Trouble in Little China
Blade Runner (RIP Rutger Hauer)
Blue Velvet (if you're cringing, it's just because you're supposed to be)
Broadcast News
BTTF 1 & 2
Buckaroo Banzai (if you can't appreciate the awesome, then patooey!)
Caddyshack
Carpenter's The Thing
Catseye
Child's Play (only the first)
Creepshow
Crocodile Dundee is still fun
Die Hard
Do The Right Thing
Drugstore Cowboy
many of the Eddie Murphy movies
Escape From New York
ET
Fast Times at Ridgemont High
Ferris Beuller (probably the single best 80s comedy)
First Blood
Fright Night
Ghostbusters
Goonies
Gremlins
Hellraiser
Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer (Rooker is amazing)
Labyrinth (I might excuse a cringe during "Chilly Down")
Ladyhawke (RIP Rutger Hauer)
Lethal Weapon (at least the first, maybe the second, as well)
Little Shop of Horrors (meh, I'm a musical lover)
Lucas
Mad Max 2 & 3
Nation Lampoon's Vacation & Christmas Vacation
Near Dark
NeverEnding Story (nope not just saying it because of Stranger Things)
One Crazy Summer
Planes, Trains & Automobiles
Platoon & Full Metal Jacket (I'm not even a war movie guy)
maybe the first Police Academy
Poltergiest (the first one, not the sequels)
Predator
Pretty in Pink
Raging Bull
Raising Arizona
Real Genius
Revenge of the Nerds
Risky Business (once upon a time I liked Tom Cruise)
RoboCop (just the first)
Scarface (cringing is intended)
Scrooged
Secret of NIMH
Sixteen Candles
Stand By Me
Stripes
The first 2 Superman movies
Terminator
The Evil Dead
The Blues Brothers
The Breakfast Club
The Burbs
The Hitcher (RIP Rutger Hauer)
The Last Starfighter
The Lost Boys
The Outsiders
The Princess Bride
The Shining
The Witches of Eastwick
They Live! (it's gone beyond just a cult film, imo)
Time Bandits
Untouchables
Weird Science
Who Framed Roger Rabbit




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Nose Norton


Location: Plainville
Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
Posts: 6,626



    Quote:
    I know... I know... I'm the unofficial Comicboards.com 80s guy, thus very biased, but...


We appreciate your work here lol

The last time I watched Fast Times, I really questioned my opinion of it. Its themes are universal and timeless but I found the humor pretty dated. It's still charming but it's not the comedy classic I used to think it was.

Better Off Dead's humor seems to be ahead of its time when looking back now. Dan Schneider, who played Ricky, went on to create Nickelodeon tween classics iCarly and Victorious and you can see his off-the-wall sense of humor.

Spot on with Ferris Bueller. That movie has absolutely withstood the test of time.

Henry: Portrait Of A Serial Killer seems more like a 70s movie to me, but I agree, it holds up. It's not for everyone but horror fans of any age will like it.

The Thing is one of the best horror movies of all time.


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Superman's Pal

Moderator

Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
Posts: 5,654


I guess it depends what you mean by hold up. Every movie will get dated, it's a product of the time it's made. That used to turn me off of old movies. I eventually got over it. Even movies that come out now and are modern can have terrible special effects, terrible acting, etc. So I can enjoy an old movie with dated effects or dated style if it's got a good story or is made fairly well. Does that mean it held up?

Carpenter's The Thing was always one of my favorites but I can see effects in it that are not as good as others. I still prefer practical effects to CGI generally, but practicals have gotten much better since the 80s and some of them don't hold up. I still like the movie.

Terminator's stop-motion robot at the end is a dated effect that isn't really used anymore. But it's more fluid and moves better than the clunky animatronic ones in T2. It doesn't bother the movie for me.

You know what I find worse? RoboCop, which has held up better than Terminator probably, has the most terrible stop-motion puppet when Ronny Cox falls out the window at the end. Compare it to the green screen shot of Alan Rickman falling at the end of Die Hard just one year later. I love RoboCop but that shot kills me.

Otherwise I agree with many of the movies other people have mentioned. And I tend to watch Die Hard at Christmas, Gremlins and Monster Squad at Halloween. I don't know if I'd show my teen Revenge of the Nerds because it's a bit rapey.




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Unstable Molecule


Location: Calgary, AB Canada
Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
Posts: 3,103



    Quote:
    Other Anglophone movies of the 1980s worth considering/a watch


Of the list below, I think the ones that have aged the best (so they would compare favorably to modern movies) are:

Airplane!
Blade Runner
Ghandi
Amadeus
Platoon
This is Spinal Tap
Princess Bride
Dead Poet's Society
Who Framed Roger Rabbit?
The Little Mermaid
When Harry Met Sally

Not to say that there aren't great movies on that list - but if Top Gun or even Aliens were released this year, they would probably be panned for having acting and dialogue that's ridiculously over the top. Which is partly what made the 80's great, but it wouldn't necessarily fly with today's more sophisticated audience.




    Quote:
    1980
    Airplane!
    The Blues Brothers (a worldwide cult classic)
    1981
    An American Werewolf in London
    The Great Muppet Caper
    The Gods Must Be Crazy
    Gregory's Girl
    Time Bandits (at least for Terry Gilliam's admirers)
    Taxi Driver
    1982
    Blade Runner (extremely iconic, even if rooted in "Metropolis" to an extent)
    Dead Men Don't Wear Plaid
    The Draughtsman's Contract (for Peter Greenaway's fans)
    E.T. - The Extra-Terrestrial
    First Blood (again very iconic, if a niche product)
    Gandhi
    Tootsie
    Victor/Victoria
    1983
    Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence
    Trading Places
    Zelig
    1984
    Amadeus
    Beverly Hills Cops (yes, very much an 80s film, but that's not a bad thing)
    Ghostbusters (started another successful franchise)
    Gremlins
    The Muppets Take Manhattan
    The Natural (Charlie Brown's favourite movie)
    A Passage to India
    Romancing the Stone (followed by The Jewel of the Nile and The War of the Roses)
    1985
    Back to the Future (and Part II in 1989)
    Brazil
    Cocoon
    Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome
    Turtle Diary (a personal fave of mine)
    1986
    Aliens
    Crocodile Dundee
    Hannah and Her Sisters
    Highlander
    Labyrinth (still has quite a fandom)
    Little Shop of Horrors (another cult classic)
    The Mission (classic Morricone score)
    Platoon
    Ruthless People
    The Terminator
    This is Spinal Tap
    1987
    Full Metal Jacket
    Good Morning Vietnam
    Hamburger Hill
    The Last Emperor
    Moonstruck (which I love)
    The Princess Bride
    Wall Street
    1988
    Beetlejuice
    Big
    Big Business (a personal fave)
    Bull Durham
    Dangerous Liaisons
    Die Hard (another franchise-starter)
    A Fish Called Wanda
    Hairspray (cult classic)
    Rain Man
    Spaceballs
    Who Framed Roger Rabbit
    1989
    Dead Poets Society
    Driving Miss Daisy
    Glory
    Henry V (which kicked off Kenneth Branagh's series of Shakespeare adaptations)
    The Little Mermaid
    Major League (a guilty pleasure)
    When Harry Met Sally...







"It is not our abilities that show what we truly are. It is our choices." – Albus Dumbledore
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Menshevik


Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
Posts: 5,072



    Quote:
    Of the list below, I think the ones that have aged the best (so they would compare favorably to modern movies) are:



    Quote:
    Airplane!
    Blade Runner
    Ghandi


Nitpicking note: it's "Gandhi", not "Ghandi". One of my orthographic pet peeves (along with people misspelling "Phoenix" as "Pheonix", "wiener" as "weiner" and "Rogue" as "Rouge" (or vice versa \:\-\) ).


    Quote:
    Amadeus
    Platoon
    This is Spinal Tap
    Princess Bride
    Dead Poet's Society
    Who Framed Roger Rabbit?
    The Little Mermaid
    When Harry Met Sally



    Quote:
    Not to say that there aren't great movies on that list - but if Top Gun or even Aliens were released this year, they would probably be panned for having acting and dialogue that's ridiculously over the top. Which is partly what made the 80's great, but it wouldn't necessarily fly with today's more sophisticated audience.


Well, tastes have changed since the 1980s, although I would say the most noticeable difference is not what style of acting is deemed "acceptable" (and some of the films I listed would clearly not work as well in a more "restrained" style - just try to imagine a subdued "Blues Brothers" or "Henry V"), but things like the reduced attention span of modern audiences (largely brought on by the influence of commercials and pop videos). For instance, I listed "Turtle Diary" and "Wings of Desire"; these are late examples of the "slowness" you got in quite a few great movies of the 1970s and late 1960s (two notable examples: "2001" and "Once Upon a Time in the West") or even the way older movies would take time in long sequences in which apparently nothing happens (such as the slow lead-up to the scene with the crop-duster plane in "North by Northwest" (1959)). These days you probably would not produce films like that anymore. But I would not see changing tastes as indicative of greater sophistication.


    Quote:

      Quote:
      1980
      Airplane!
      The Blues Brothers (a worldwide cult classic)
      1981
      An American Werewolf in London
      The Great Muppet Caper
      The Gods Must Be Crazy
      Gregory's Girl
      Time Bandits (at least for Terry Gilliam's admirers)
      Taxi Driver
      1982
      Blade Runner (extremely iconic, even if rooted in "Metropolis" to an extent)
      Dead Men Don't Wear Plaid
      The Draughtsman's Contract (for Peter Greenaway's fans)
      E.T. - The Extra-Terrestrial
      First Blood (again very iconic, if a niche product)
      Gandhi
      Tootsie
      Victor/Victoria
      1983
      Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence
      Trading Places
      Zelig
      1984
      Amadeus
      Beverly Hills Cops (yes, very much an 80s film, but that's not a bad thing)
      Ghostbusters (started another successful franchise)
      Gremlins
      The Muppets Take Manhattan
      The Natural (Charlie Brown's favourite movie)
      A Passage to India
      Romancing the Stone (followed by The Jewel of the Nile and The War of the Roses)
      1985
      Back to the Future (and Part II in 1989)
      Brazil
      Cocoon
      Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome
      Turtle Diary (a personal fave of mine)
      1986
      Aliens
      Crocodile Dundee
      Hannah and Her Sisters
      Highlander
      Labyrinth (still has quite a fandom)
      Little Shop of Horrors (another cult classic)
      The Mission (classic Morricone score)
      Platoon
      Ruthless People
      The Terminator
      This is Spinal Tap
      1987
      Full Metal Jacket
      Good Morning Vietnam
      Hamburger Hill
      The Last Emperor
      Moonstruck (which I love)
      The Princess Bride
      Wall Street
      1988
      Beetlejuice
      Big
      Big Business (a personal fave)
      Bull Durham
      Dangerous Liaisons
      Die Hard (another franchise-starter)
      A Fish Called Wanda
      Hairspray (cult classic)
      Rain Man
      Spaceballs
      Who Framed Roger Rabbit
      1989
      Dead Poets Society
      Driving Miss Daisy
      Glory
      Henry V (which kicked off Kenneth Branagh's series of Shakespeare adaptations)
      The Little Mermaid
      Major League (a guilty pleasure)
      When Harry Met Sally...



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Grey Gargoyle


Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008




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The Black Guardian

Moderator

Location: Paragon City, RI
Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008


Somewhat cheesy, because it's basically a teen movie, but generally some timeless fun.




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Grey Gargoyle


Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008




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nigma


Member Since: Sun Nov 26, 2017


Die Hard, Aliens and Raiders of the Lost Ark are timeless. I also have an affection for Silverado.

And, as a principle, I don't think there are many movies that get dated in the areas of drama and comedy. Special effects are the only thing that get really old.


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Mikel Midnight


Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
Posts: 1,557



    Quote:
    And, as a principle, I don't think there are many movies that get dated in the areas of drama and comedy. Special effects are the only thing that get really old.


Antiquated SFX don't bother me. I can put up with a lot so long as the pacing of the story is exciting.

Acting styles do change, however. 40s movies never bother me but there was a sort of style in a lot of 80s movies that strike me as a mannered affectation and make them unwatchable for me now.



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