Movies Of The 80's - 1986



As an 80's music aficionado, I've found myself interested as of late in the world of 80's soundtracks. Be it scores, or various artist albums, I'm always on the lookout for a CD to add to my collection.

Of course, there are the staples. Top Gun, Footloose, Flashdance, Ghostbusters, and the list goes on and on. These albums have been a mainstay in my collection since relatively the start of it. But, this is just the tip of the iceberg, and I wanted to dive deeper.

The problem I quickly found was that while searching based on films that popped into my head randomly, I wasn't necessarily delving very far. After mulling it around for a while, I finally broke down and decided that to truly find just what was out there, I first had to educate myself on what films were out there.

It took months of cataloging, which was based on limited time between work and other obligations, but finally I was able to reach the finish line. Utilizing links to Wikipedia by year denoting the List of American Films of (insert year here), I created a series of posts with each movie poster, ad, or some form of representation for made for television movies, to have a reference guide. Now I could truly begin my search into just what soundtracks were out there.

Not wanting all this work to go to waste, I decided I would take the next several weeks to present to you the Movies of the 80's! We've already looked at the freshman year of the decade, and it continues here with 1986.

By the end of 1986 I was only nine years old, which meant, for the most part, I still wasn't watching rated R movies. So many classics I missed as a kid would have to come back around in my teenage / young adult years, and fortunately, that did happen.

I never understood the hype of the original Alien film. I found it to be rather boring. Though the sequel ramped up the action, I just never saw Sigourney Weaver as an action here. To me, she was Dana from Ghostbusters.

I saw Armed and Dangerous for the first time in 2022, and it was not...well, good. The comedic points fell pretty flat, making me wonder if John Candy was indeed as funny as I my mind thought he was.

An American Tail is one of those films that never really resonated with me as a kid. Don Bluth films, in general, typically left me wishing I could have watched something else. Still, I acknowledge the film as the classic animated film it is.

I want to say that I've seen Back To School. However, if I have, I couldn't tell you anything about it.

Now, Big Trouble In Little China, on the other hand, I've seen many times. Love it! Classic Kurt Russell film, with all the potential for a sequel that never came forth!

I vaguely recall being subjected to The Boy Who Could Fly during one of our rare "family nights" watching television together.

Another rarity for us was family vacations, and 1986 turned into the year of Disney Land! It was here that I not only got to go on Star Tours, but also sit through a showing of Captain Eo! Classic Michael Jackson! I really wish this would have gotten an official DVD release. At minimum, the soundtrack on CD.

Stallone made a ton of action flicks in the 80's. So many that I can't really distinguish them from each other. I think the only thing I remember about this particular one was that he sucked on a match every scene.

Even as a kid, I never understood the hype of Ferris Bueller's Day Off. I mean, it was okay, but it was by no means groundbreaking cinematography or story telling. To this day, I still don't get what all the fuss is about.

Another family night, and another kid friendly movie. At least Flight of the Navigator had Pee-Wee Herman in it. Beyond that, I don't remember anything about it.

After getting my fill of Jason flicks in my late teens, which also had an entry in 1986, I moved on to The Fly, hoping to get just as much horror thrills. Not so much. Definitely a slow burn.

I'm not sure how I missed a Go-Bots movie in 1986, but I totally did. While the animated series has been released on DVD, the film has not, so to date, I still have not seen it. Fortunately, I did get to see, The Golden Child. I still chuckle when thinking of the scene with Eddie Murphy saying, "I.i.i.i.i.i.i.i.i.want the knife," while spinning the relic like a record.

The Great Mouse Detective remains one of my all time favorite Disney animated films. It's got a bit of darkness to it that makes it stand out among the earlier and later films.

I know I've seen Gung Ho, but I honestly don't remember anything specific about it.

Ha, yes! Hamburger! Classic, and so often forgotten by many.

I don't know what hit my radar first. Queen or Highlander. I do, however, vividly watching a VHS of Highlander multiple times in a row while building a massive Star Wars puzzle on my mom's kitchen counter.

As a kid, I never put two and two together that Howard the Duck was technically a Marvel movie. Instead, my focus was on it being a Lucasfilm production.

Yes, yes, and more yes! The Karate Kid was, and remains, epic! It was, for me, the most highly anticipated sequel I wanted to see at the time. I was, and remain, a mad, stupid, Karate Kid fan!

We had just gotten home from a family dinner out, and my pops said he had a movie for us to watch. My mom didn't stick around for it, but we four all sat together taking in the awe inspiring Labyrinth. To this day, the Fireys creatures creep me out.

I didn't see many musicals as a kid, but Little Shop of Horrors was definitely one of them. Classic flick! Steve Martin steels the show with his song scene.

Corey Haim films were required watching for 80's kids, and Lucas was no exception. It wasn't the traditional role he played, underdog turned champ, but it was still a great flick.

Tom Hanks and Shelly Long were a winning combination for box office tickets in the 80's, so it only made sense for the two to come together for The Money Pit. While the film grossed over fifty million dollars on a ten million dollar budget, critics were not kind.

My Chauffeur, AKA that flick with Flash Gordon was a film I caught late at night on television hoping to see...Well...women. I even recorded it in hopes of preserving it. Sadly, it didn't deliver. Oddly, my sister said it was a movie she wanted to watch, and actually took the VHS.

Much like horror flicks, I went through a Vietnam war movie phase, and that's when I finally saw Platoon. It was okay, but didn't leave a big mark on me.

Hooray! Another sequel to Police Academy! This time around, it introduced two of my favorite new characters, Zed and Sweetchuck. Poltergeist II got added to my VHS collection when I got older, and while I gave it a viewing once or twice, it never really blew my mind.

Ruthless People was a flick I saw with my dad, and I remember him laughing so many times during it. I was a bit young to catch on to many of the jokes, but when I re-watched it as an adult, I caught on.

I want to say that I saw Short Circuit in the theaters, but I don't honestly recall. I do know for a fact that I saw the second one with my mom on the big screen.

Oh, boy. They'd never get away with a movie like Soul Man these days. Frankly, I'm not sure how they got away with it in the 80's.

May rave about Star Trek IV. Personally, I can't stand it. I think it's the worst since the first. Stand By Me, on the other hand, has been a favorite of mine since first seeing it in the 80's.

Another horror franchise I tackled head long in my older years was Texas Chainsaw. Part two was definitely more over the top and silly than the first.

Three Amigos, yes please, and thank you! Classic comedy film staring some of the funnies men of the era. Everyone should see this one.

Then there was top gun. The biggest film of the year. Even if you didn't see the film, you said you did on the playground. I remember the day my dad's VHS arrived in the mail, and I finally got to see it, and stop faking that I had.

I didn't even know about Transformers the movie until a high school buddy of mine bought me a VHS copy from Canada when ordering himself one. I was blown away by the film and soundtrack, and it quickly became a staple in my re-watch pile. Which was odd, because I was never a fan of the television series.

My sister went to the theater and saw Under the Cherry Moon. She came out professing how terrible it was. As for me, I've only seen parts of it, and that was more than enough for me...Even as a Prince fan.

But, that wraps up my personal viewing of films from 1986. Not a very good ratio based on how many flicks were released. Still, that won't stop me from diving head long into 1987 next week!

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