erik lundegaard

Since Nobody Asked, My Top 10 Movies of the 1980s

Movie Mezzanine recently asked a bunch of critics for their top 10 movies of the '80s and printed, or least uploaded, the results. Since no one asked, I thought I'd join the party.

Man, what a sucky decade for film. And politics. And culture in general. It's the decade when we began to turn right, tune out and dumb down. Director-driven movies died and studio-produced sequels thrived. Woody Allen stumbled out of the gate but found himself and created some of his most inventive work. Martin Scorsese started with a bang and ended with a bang but lost himself in the middle. Alfred Hitchcock, Francois Truffaut, Hal Ashby, Orson Welles, and John Huston died. Francis Ford Coppola made “One from the Heart.”

Here's my list. Feel free to add yours below.

  1. Amadeus (1984)
  2. Tootsie (1982)
  3. Raging Bull (1980)
  4. The Right Stuff (1983)
  5. Matewan (1987)
  6. Raising Arizona (1987)
  7. 28 Up (1984)
  8. My Life as a Dog (1985)
  9. Do The Right Thing (1989)
  10. This is Spinal Tap (1984)

Tough to leave off: Blue Velvet (1986), Bull Durham (1988), Crimes and Misdemeanors (1989), Coup de Torchon (1982), Die Hard (1988), Full Metal Jacket (1987), Hannah and her Sisters (1986), Jean de Florette (1986), The Princess Bride (1987).

Top 10 movies of the 1980s: Do the Right Thing, Amadeus, Tootsie, Matewan

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Posted at 06:24 AM on Wed. Jul 10, 2013 in category Movies - Lists  


Jacob Slichter wrote:

A great list, as always, Erik! Some of my 1980s faves include . . .

Wings of Desire
Das Boot
Man Facing Southeast

Comment posted on Wed. Jul 10, 2013 at 06:39 AM

Daniel wrote:

That's a great list, and I'll definitely look up the two movies I haven't seen (Matewan and My Life as a Dog). Personally, I might put a few on your “tough to leave off” list ahead of some of those that made it. I also think I would be inclined to add The Mission (1986) to the list somewhere. I was going to say that Miller's Crossing had to be there, too, but, nope, it's from 1990.

Comment posted on Wed. Jul 10, 2013 at 09:02 AM

Mister B wrote:

My Top 10 (from over 280 movies seen in theatres during the 1980s) in order:

The Color Purple (1985), The Empire Strikes Back (1980), Raiders Of The Lost Ark (1981), Blade Runner (1982), Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan (1982), Back To The Future (1985), Empire Of The Sun (1987), Field Of Dreams (1989), Amadeus (1984), Do The Right Thing (1989).

Ten that were tough to leave off (alphabetical order):

Aliens (1986), Beverly Hills Cop (1984), Brazil (1985), E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial (1982), Miracle Mile (1989), Raging Bull (1980), Raising Arizona (1987), Silverado (1985), The Thing (1982), Wings Of Desire (198.

Comment posted on Wed. Jul 10, 2013 at 12:23 PM

Andy wrote:

Seven dark horses...or at least not listed here yet:

*A Fish Called Wanda
*King of Comedy
*Midnight Run
*Repo Man
*Runaway Train
*Stand By Me

Comment posted on Fri. Jul 12, 2013 at 05:49 PM
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