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12 Awesome 80’s Movies That Are Perfect

The 80’s were a decade of decadence, with everything being bigger, crazier, and more over the top. It was the beginning of the age of insanity, and yet somehow, out of the midst of all of the big crazy hair and drug use and Reaganomics, a few gems that could withstand the test of time were born. Even if the hair and clothes change, some things just stay perfect. With that we present…

Ferris Bueller’s Day Off

“So far this semester he has been absent nine times. “

“Nine times?”

“Nine times.”

“I don’t remember him being sick nine times.”

“That’s probably because he wasn’t sick. He was skipping school. Wake up and smell the coffee, Mrs. Bueller. It’s a fool’s paradise. He is just leading you down the primrose path.”

If there’s one thing that John Hughes understood, it was that kids would always want to skip school, and they would employ near genius level plotting and planning to get away with it. Ferris Bueller, a privileged junior in high school, takes his 9th sick day to enjoy a wild and crazy day with his best friend and his girlfriend while avoiding discovery by his overly dedicated (read: obsessed) principal (sorry, Dean of Students) Edward R. Rooney. Rooney is determined to prove that Ferris isn’t sick…he’s skipping school. Hughes’ masterful use of smarmy remarks, ingenious planning by Ferris, and Ben Stein’s droll delivery of “Bueller…Bueller…Bueller…” make it a staple that will go down in history, and a movie that should NEVER be remade.


Repo Man

“The life of a repo man is always intense.”

Repo Man is a perfect 80s movie. Tthere isn’t a single being alive with an un-lobotomized brain that would dare argue with that statement. Alex Cox manages to deliver a movie that is simultaneous baffling, nonsensical, some might even say pointless and yet completely satisfying. Doing a remake or a changing anything about this movie would not only ruin an 80’s masterpiece, it would probably unravel the entire space time continuum. Not to mention you’d probably have to deal with a lot of angry shrimp, after all this is the movie that made shrimp the popular seafood dish they are today. Before 1984 shrimp were seen as the cockroach of the sea, but now people every where have Repo Man to thank for their plate of shrimp.
Top Gun

“I feel the need…the need…for SPEED!”

The movie that made Tom Cruise a household name, Top Gun was the story of Maverick, a young hotshot who was selected to join an elite training academy for pilots. Val Kilmer makes an appearance as Iceman, the cold, steely rival to Cruise’s Maverick who in the end respects Maverick for his skill as a pilot. Fighter jets, brotherhood, and a group of pilots all singing “You’ve lost…that looovin’ feeelin’…whoa oh, that loovin’ feeeeelin’…” to help Maverick get the girl all make this a perfect, untouchable classic.

Top Gun

“I feel the need…the need…for SPEED!”

The movie that made Tom Cruise a household name, Top Gun was the story of Maverick, a young hotshot who was selected to join an elite training academy for pilots. Val Kilmer makes an appearance as Iceman, the cold, steely rival to Cruise’s Maverick who in the end respects Maverick for his skill as a pilot. Fighter jets, brotherhood, and a group of pilots all singing “You’ve lost…that looovin’ feeelin’…whoa oh, that loovin’ feeeeelin’…” to help Maverick get the girl all make this a perfect, untouchable classic.

Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure

“Put them in the Iron Maiden…”

“EXCELLENT!!”

“Execute them!”

“Bogus…”

Yes, Bill and Ted embodied all that was great about the 80’s. You didn’t have to be smart, good looking, or have a lot of money…you just had to believe in yourself and have a sense of purpose. Their purpose was passing their final presentation in World History, so that they could stay best friends, start their band (The Wyld Stallions!), and create music that would align the heavens and earth and bring peace to the entire universe. To that end, the late, great, George Carlin’s Rufus was their Morpheus, guiding them on a trek through time to gather historical figures to aid them in their presentation and help them learn some responsibility. “Be…excellent…to each other…” preaches Abe Lincoln at the end, “Annnnd….PARTY ON, DUDES!!” Allegedly there’s a remake in the works. I don’t know how or why, but they can’t possibly top perfection.

Princess Bride

“My name is Inigo Montoya. You keeled my father…prepare to die.”

Princess Bride is one of those movies that EVERYONE can enjoy on some level. Besides just being an awesome movie all around, with humor, action, adventure and romance, it’s a movie that’s enough of a chick flick to get you laid, enough of an action comedy to keep you awake, and enough fun to make everyone happy. And it’s got Andre the Giant in it! And he makes sense there!! And you know a movie has to be perfect if it has Fred Savage in it and it still rocks!!

Coming to America

“The royal penis is clean, your highness.”

So begins another day for Prince Hakeem of Zamunda. Gorgeous women bathing him and servicing his every need and whim, living in a paradise, unsullied by the outside world, and having his OWN money (as in, with his face on it). But, as his arranged marriage arrives, he realizes that he wants to choose his own bride, who “…can arouse my intellect as well as my loins.” So, where does he go? Where else? Queens, New York.

The rest is comedic history, and probably one of Eddie Murphy’s top 5 roles. A classic through and through, Coming to America can not be improved on.

Die Hard

“Yippee ki yay, motherfucker.”

Bruce Willis was propelled to superstardom when he played John McClaine. We won’t beat a dead horse by going through this one again, as we all know the awesomeness that is Die Hard, but we will say that every iota of this movie, from the young and goofy limo driver to the 80’s hot estranged wife to the 80’s badass Hans Gruber was perfect, and the succeeding sequels never reached the heights the first Die Hard achieved.

Transformers: The Movie

“One shall stand…One…shall fall.”

“Why throw away your life so recklessly?”

“That’s a question you should ask yourself, Megatron.”

“NO! I’ll crush you with my bare HANDS!!”

Children of the 80’s, you remember the war between the heroic Autobots and the treacherous Decepticons…before they went CG, before Michael Bay…before Megan Fox. You remember how badass they made Optimus Prime in that movie, and I bet at least half of you reading this cried when Prime died after the epic confrontation between Prime and Megatron. No animated “kids’” movie before or since has had quite the emotional impact on an entire generation of children. It was perfect in its presentation, in its action, and in its marketability. And the only thing to come close to it was…

GI Joe: The Movie

“Cobra-LA LA LA LA LA LA LA LA LA LA!!!!”

A Real American Hero. GIJoe is there. Fighting for freedom over land and air against Cobra, a ruthless terrorist organization determined to rule the world. You all know the catch phrases and even though this one went direct to video, it was still perfect for the same reasons Transformers: The Movie was. It was the great pinnacle of GIJoe, where the creators took more risks than they had before and presented a deeper (albeit strange) storyline than had previously been attempted. Though the creators backed off from killing Prime’s GIJoe counterpart Duke, it was still ballsier than anything they’d previously attempted. Besides, with badass characters like Nemesis Enforcer, Golobulus, and Serpentor, who didn’t love it?

Conan

“Conan, what is best in life?”

“To crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and to hear the lamentations of their women”

The movie that made Arnold a star, Conan the Barbarian has been copied, parodied, and usurped so many times that it’s almost hard to tell what the source material is…except that none of the copies have EVER lived up to the awesomeness that was Arnold’s Conan. In spite of the fact that no one could even understand Arnold’s “English” back then, so much so that they had to dub his dialogue, he was still the perfect and only choice for the role, making him an icon and making the movie, full of barbarian badassity, a true classic, perfect and untouchable.

The Thing

“I know I’m human. And if you were all these things, then you’d just attack me right now, so some of you are still human. This thing doesn’t want to show itself, it wants to hide inside an imitation. It’ll fight if it has to, but it’s vulnerable out in the open. If it takes us over, then it has no more enemies, nobody left to kill it. And then it’s won.”

There is a reason why The Thing is in IMDB’s top 250 movies list, and its because the movie really is that good. And if you’ve been paying attention over the years (like me) The Thing is actually rising in the ranks. Anyway, The Thing is set in Antarctica and its got one hell of a lead hero: Kurt Russell. That in and of itself should win you, but if it doesn’t let me give you the plot description: Scientists in the Antarctic are confronted by a shape-shifting alien that assumes the appearance of the people that it kills. Sheer fucking genius. Hell even the tagline is perfect: Man is The Warmest Place to Hide. You think Will Smith’s dog in I Am Legend is awesome? Ha! Wait until you check out the Oscar worthy performance by Kurt’s dog. He makes Lassie look like a chump. Here’s the part that bugs me. This is clearly John Carpenter’s best film ever, and it still manages to be underrated. How is that possible?! I am hoping Hollywood does not tread into this masterpiece’s waters and decide a remake is in order, because it will not be anywhere near as good nor surpass its predecessor.

The Lost Boys

“And then his dog started chasing my mom like the hounds of hell in ‘Vampires Everywhere.'”

“We’ve been aware there’s some very serious vampire activity in this town for some time.”

“Santa Carla’s become a haven for the undead.”

“As a matter of fact, we’re almost certain ghouls and werewolves occupy high positions at city hall.”

“Kill your brother, you’ll feel better.”

Lost Boys is the quintessential teenage-horror flick that sprung from the 80’s. Back when Joel “Bat Nipples” Schumacher was truly a mastermind, he birthed unto us this gem. I’m not sure about you guys, but I still believe Lost Boys is the best vampire flick of all time. Yep, that includes Blade, Underworld, Interview, etc. – they are all no match for this perfect horror flick. It gave us both Coreys (who incidentally, were born to play their respective roles), one bad ass Kiefer Sutherland and Jason Patric’s greatest performance. The Lost Boys just so happens to be one of those rare flicks that actually gets better and better every time you watch it. There is absolutely nothing I would change about this movie and that is why it is the essence of pure perfection.

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Comments

50 Responses to “12 Awesome 80’s Movies That Are Perfect”
  1. fisharegood says:

    i have never posted on these sites i stumble on so this will be the first so that i may say i couldn’t agree more with this list. The only thing i would have added would have been to sate my geek-ness with Buckaroo Banzai Across the Eighth Dimension

  2. Utah says:

    Ferris and the Princess Bride are timeless classics. I’ve seen both of them many times and they never get old!

  3. warhead says:

    Great list, you hit me 😀

  4. trompyx says:

    very good post

  5. Strong One says:

    STRONG WORK!!!!
    This list is great. Thanks for the trip down amnesia lane.

  6. Shayne says:

    Good list but how about the Goonies!!

  7. TrixRabbi says:

    Drop Top Gun. Add This Is Spinal Tap.

  8. matt says:

    um… Empire Strikes Back?!? Indiana f***ing Jones!?!?!

  9. Danimal says:

    I would like to make an addition to the list
    the goonies one of my favorite movies ever and i didn’t even grow up in the eighties lol

  10. Brandon M. Sergent says:

    I offer a second for BBAED, and submit that Brazil be included as an honorable mention.

  11. goonies? says:

    Notable omissions

    1. Goonies “H-E-Y! Y-O-U! G-U-Y-S!”
    2. Back to the future, “Great Scott!!!”
    3. Little shop of horrors, “Feed me, Seymour!!!!”
    4. Ghostbusters, “There is no Peter, only zoooooooool!”
    5. National lampoon’s vacation, wally world… need I say more?
    6. Planes trains & automobiles, “Those aren’t two pillows!”

    pretty sound otherwise

  12. bubs says:

    What about Big Trouble in Little China, a classic in my book.

  13. Awful says:

    So half wrong.

  14. Badace3569 says:

    Good post, but just wanted to point out that the last picture you show isn’t actually from The Lost Boys – it’s another 80’s movie titled License to Drive.

  15. Badace3569 says:

    Take it back – all around good post. Had my facts wrong.

  16. Ian says:

    I’m so angry that they’re remaking Bill & Ted

    It’s going to completely ruin the original for me

  17. revolverlbc says:

    uhm… what about The Goonies?

  18. Anon says:

    Thank you for not including any Molly Ringwald in this list of perfect 80’s movies. That made my day!

  19. DrBlindsy says:

    This is probably the best list I think I’ve seen in a damned long time!

    Every one of these films are not only in my collection, but in there a few times (VHS/DVD/DVD special editions etc etc…) What an amazing set of picks! Great job mate

    Cheers

  20. Raggi says:

    What…! No Goonies, Gremlings or Ghostbusters… Ghostbusters was flawless…

  21. Furyon says:

    nice post.. I have to agree they are all great flicks. Im not sure about the G.I Joe film but, i have yet to see it..

  22. Bonjovibabe says:

    I would add The Breakfast Club to the list – sheer perfection IMO!

  23. Bonjovibabe says:

    Oh and Dirty Dancing, but I guess you may have to be a girl of the 80s to truly appreciate the impact of this one lol!

  24. Nick says:

    where’s the goonies?!

  25. kim says:

    don’t think i remember ‘the thing’ 2 cartoons? hmmm Karate Kid shoulda got a mention.. most definitely the goonies
    what a boy list!!

  26. Jack Burton says:

    No Big Trouble Little China? are you mad? I demand the addition of BTLC. Also Buckaroo Banzai needs to represent.

  27. marty mcfly says:

    what about back to the future
    this is a great list of films but you forgot about the best film of all time

  28. fionn says:

    That’s cool — Alex Winters appears twice on this list! Once in “Bill & Ted’s” , and also in “Lost Boys”

    Excellent!

  29. Bilbo says:

    I agree with all the comments, except the Goonies. Also Top Gun does belong there…still one of the only good fighter pilot movies even now.

    I did find it amusing they mention the Goonies in Lost Boys 2 though.

  30. MaryMc says:

    Ummm…you do know that the 1982 “The Thing” was a remake of a (better) 1951 film?

  31. DaveKan says:

    You were doing well, then went off the rails with the Transformers movie. I watched that recently with my son and it was awful…The people responsible for that one either took too many drugs or not enough, not sure which.

  32. jim says:

    why are comments usually so incredibly stupid?
    If you have nothing interesting to say why not stay shut up?

  33. Rat says:

    Hey I was in the Princes Bride…fanfare trumpet on the steps in the courtyard scene. Glad to see it listed here.

  34. dafydd says:

    Comments were asked for and our opinions are all valid.I think that most of the movies in the list are the usual Hollywood crap.

  35. nick says:

    @MaryMc
    Ummmmm… You know you’re an absolute moron, right? Everybody here can visit imdb.com. Go suck a teat.

  36. Jodi says:

    What a great list:D

    Just one comment….what about Labyrinth?!
    Common! David Bowie in tights? with Jim Hensen puppets?
    It couldn’t get anymore 80’s or any better!

  37. max says:

    As others have said what about the goonies, but also what about stand by me. I thought that was one of the best most perfect movies of all time.

  38. John says:

    What’s the matter with you. You forgot Highlander. all the sequels were f____ crap

  39. Jenn says:

    Great list! I am just shocked no one has mentioned the Karate Kid movies!! =o] Gotta love the 80s!

  40. Greg says:

    What about Back to the Future, Rocky, Commando, and Rambo. Great movies of all time.

  41. Marie says:

    E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial. One of the all time classics.

  42. Chumly says:

    From the Lost Boys to Twilight, go figure.

  43. Kjell says:

    You forgot The Breakfast Club, dude… 😀

  44. tct says:

    The Breakfast Club
    Gregory’s Girl
    Nightmare on Elm Street
    Blade Runner

    So many movies, cheers for putting your list up.

  45. Thinkingthings says:

    Fast Times at Ridgemont High? Purple Rain? The Breakfast Club? St. Elmo’s Fire? Vacation? Desperately Seeking Susan?

  46. molly says:

    E.T.? C’mon!!! And Ghostbusters!!!

  47. LT says:

    DaveKan obviously isnt a Transformer fan, otherwise would see the greatness of the movie. Good list. Yes lots of other brill 80’s films. but good list none the less.

  48. Kezy says:

    TRANSFORMERS HANDS DOWN! BEST 80’S FILM EVER PEOPLE THAT DISAGREE ARE ALL DWEEBS!

    kiss kiss and all that jazz

  49. English Teacher says:

    Please bold the movie names so this is easier to read.

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