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Added by The Mighty Celestial on 10 Jul 2014 07:03
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30 From 84: My Favorite Films Of 1984

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People who added this item 113 Average listal rating (71 ratings) 5.4 IMDB Rating 5.7

Anyone else remember this space-faring, ice-stealing, Urich-starring, not-so-classical science-fiction 80's film-fare?


People who added this item 152 Average listal rating (96 ratings) 6.3 IMDB Rating 6.5

As much as I enjoyed this movie, I saw it only once when it was playing in the theaters.

And if after you read that and the joke tied to it goes over your head, all you have to do is watch Johnny Dangerously once to get it.
People who added this item 316 Average listal rating (223 ratings) 6.7 IMDB Rating 6.8
A teenage kid discovers that the video game he has mastered is secretly a celestial training simulation program, when he is notified by an alien who reveals to him that he is a gunner/star-soldier in an intergalactic war between good and evil.
So, to all you video gamers out there, don't listen to society when it tries to convince you that all those hours spent on your x-box, gameboy or psp will eventually accumulate into a vast amount of wasted life.
For all anybody knows, you could very well be the last starfighter.

feel free to grab your wii and play with yourself as much as you like.
The future of the galaxy may depend on it.

People who added this item 262 Average listal rating (173 ratings) 6.7 IMDB Rating 6.8
Initially, this movie had all the makings of big hit: a then up and comer Michael Pare, a very young and incredibly sexy Diane Lane, a bad-ass Flock Of Seagulls lookin' William Dafoe, a serious role for Rick Moranis, a cool soundtrack, all capped off with a script and direction by Walter Hill, the guy responsible for The Warriors, Southern Comfort and 48 Hours. Oh, and Another 48 Hours. And the '85 version of Bewster's Millions. And Supernova.....
So I guess the moral of this rock'n'roll fable is "Tonight.... is what it means to be young."

People who added this item 2881 Average listal rating (1867 ratings) 7.2 IMDB Rating 7.5
  If I can be really honest here, Elm Street is the franchise that began distaste for the slasher flix, despite that horror is one of my favorite genres when it comes to cinema. The whole Freddy Kruger thing really blew up during the 80's and, in my eyes, became something that showcased a lot of the things that I came to hate when it came to slasher flix. That said, when I first watched the very Nightmare on Elm Street, even though I didn't adore it like so many movie-goers did at the time, I didn't think it was bad. I felt the Kruger kharacter was bit over the top, particularly when compared to other masked killer icons of the day like Michael Myers, Leatherface and Jason Voorhees, but overall, I still appreciated the creativity it was shhoting for when it came to it's body-counting kills. It was  the sequels that followed Freddy's first foray into fear features that made me come to hate the Kruger style kamp and strayed the character away from his debut, when he still had a more serious attitude when it came to his teen terrorizing job. 

People who added this item 358 Average listal rating (252 ratings) 5.7 IMDB Rating 6.3
Back before he was a multi-Oscar winning actor, Tom Hanks was one half of the crossdressing duo from Bosom Buddies. While wearing a dress, it was a role that found him surrendering his heart to a blonde bombshell. Soon he parlayed his TV comedic skills to the movie screen, making a Splash in Hollywood whilst giving his heart up to a beautiful lady who was half fish.
Which he quickly followed up with Bachelor Party, as a character who's up and getting hitched with 80's super-vixen Tawny Kitaen.
With all this funny business in the early 80's, who knew at the time that, as a serious actor, he would eventually end up becoming so big?

Back in the early 80's, I wasn't the biggest fan of anime. Even those few that reached a high level of acclaim had a hard time of gettiing me to sit through 'em.
Nausicaa Of The Valley Of The Wind was one of the first that finally began to open my eyes to the potential that lay within the paints and brushes that colored the cells of these films.
An ecological fable that treated it's premise with the maturity that's found in most adult oriented fantasy books and yet with the innocence of the Disney flicks, Nausicaa was able to strike a uniquely fine balance that appealed to kids and adults alike.

People who added this item 3143 Average listal rating (2083 ratings) 6.8 IMDB Rating 7.3
Gremlins (1984)
  A lot was expected by Gremlins. Everyone and their mother was sure that this was gonna be one of the biggest blockbusting classics of the 80's. With Steven Spielberg as the executive producer, Chris Columbus as the writer, Joe Dante in the director's chair, tow guys who were on the rise in their respective roles, it's no wonder that it was believed that this would the next E.T.. the majority of theater screens throughout the country were set for it's opening weekend, shiploads of merchanside were stacked in stores, and all topped off with a massive advertising push, the kind rarely seen before.   If it sounds like I'm setting this up as a failure in the end, it wasn't. However, as successful as it was, it still was no E.T.. And it's was, and still considered as much of a classic. An unbalanced tone, a Chrsitmas setting released as a summer blockbuster, and a cute concept that was darker than most people expected it was kept it from climbing higher in the heirarchyof timeless, classic 80's franchises. 

People who added this item 1283 Average listal rating (788 ratings) 7 IMDB Rating 7.1
The year is 1984, and screenwriter John Hughes has directed his first full length feature, called Sixteen Candles. It stars early adolescent newcomers Molly Ringwald, John Cusack and a very scrawny Anthony Michael Hall, in a coming of age film about the awkwardness that comes with, well..... coming of age.
And from here on end, teenage movies of the 80's will never be the same.

People who added this item 391 Average listal rating (262 ratings) 6.6 IMDB Rating 6.9
  Like most people my age, I spent the earliest years of my youth watching Sesame Street. After I grew out of that stage, came The Muppet Show during my tweener years, which I ended up becoming a life long fan of. So I was looking forward to the idea of Hollywood makaing movies about these felt-skinned anthropomorhs. And while I "felt" that their forays into film had taken a little of their edge off, the basic foundation of childlike irreverance and mature wit was still there, particularly in the first film. The second, while a worthy effort, was a little too saccharin for my tastes, and the third, The Muppets Take Manhattan,  still didn't reach the height of the original, but under Frank Oz's direction, brung back the charm and epigrammatic (look it up) humor that endeared me so much to their TV series. 

People who added this item 1846 Average listal rating (1195 ratings) 6.7 IMDB Rating 7.3
A rule-breaking cop from the grimy streets of Detroit is led to Beverly Hills California on an investigation of the murder of his friend. Operating outside of the commands of his boss, he quickly finds that his Motor City style of police work clashes a manner that is culturally significant with the high society methods of the city known as the "Garden Spot Of The World". In a role that was tailor made for him, Eddie Murphy stars as the shrewd smiling, street savy detective, Axel Foley, a character that made the SNL regular graduate from rising star to full blown blockbuster box office draw.

  Despite his penchant for telling others to "Live long and prosper", it turns out that Mr. Spoc k doesn't live as long or prosper as much as anyone expected.
But after the success of the second Star Trek movie, there was no way in Klingon's star quadrant that producers were gonna let the Enterprise's commander and Captain Kirk's confidant stay dead for too long. And to make sure that the movie fans who flocked to the theaters the second time understood that, they put it right there in the film's title. Search For Spock made it clear that in some way that could only be explained through the science of the 23rd Century, Kirk and his crew were gonna bring Spock back. Even if it meant traveling where no man has gone before.
  Which is pretty much par for the course for these guys anyways.

People who added this item 111 Average listal rating (71 ratings) 7.4 IMDB Rating 7.2
It's the tail end of the second world war and a returning black sergeant is murdered in Louisiana. Sent to investigate is military attorney Capt. Davenport, who expects that since the crime occurred in the Jim Crow south, the circumstances of the incident will be a open and close case. However, as the details of the murdered officer come to light, it becomes quite apparent that the case may not be as black and white as it first seemed.

People who added this item 579 Average listal rating (314 ratings) 6.9 IMDB Rating 7.3
Frankenweenie (1984)
 Tim Burton's very first film is a black & white feature which tells the macabre tale of how a pet dog is bought back to life by his child owner. After the bull terrier gets killed by a car (the leading cause of death amongst canines, after old age), the young lad decides to a take a page out of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein, and resurrect the Spuds Mckenzie look-alike through the use of electricity. I guess mad scientists have figured out that electricity is spark of all life.
 But that's not the point. What matters is a boy and his dog.
A bond that not even the Grim Reaper can hope to sever.
 Well....he can....
but still, through the use of love nd , well...y'know.... more electricity...
and probably some string, I guess...
the boy and his dog will can never be separated. For long.

 Now that I think about it though,
when a kid's dog "bites it",
it seems to me that making a simple trip to the pet shop would really be a heck of alot easier than building a secret lab in the attic.
People who added this item 120 Average listal rating (70 ratings) 7.2 IMDB Rating 7.4
Before I saw this film,
I always thought of Sally Field as either that one flying nun chick,
or as that one girl from all those Cannonball Run movies (it is at this point of the sentence that someone will usually remind me that the movies I'm really thinking of are the Smokey & The Bandit films, not the CBR's....).
But after watching Places In The Heart,
I came to realize that, as an actress, I like her.
I really, really like her.

People who added this item 1357 Average listal rating (854 ratings) 5.9 IMDB Rating 6.3
Opie directs Forrest Gump before he got "Big", in a fishy romantic comedy about a young Elle Driver, back when the future California Mountain Snake was scaled down and still wet behind the ears as a wee innocent and naive mermaid.

People who added this item 934 Average listal rating (666 ratings) 6.6 IMDB Rating 6.9

Okay, as we all know by now, this is basically a watered down version of Raiders Of The Lost Ark. The chemistry isn't as chemical, the action scenes aren't as kick ass, and the Stone isn't anywhere near as biblical as the Ark Of The Covenant.
But the makers of this movie do claim that its script was written first. As let's be honest, even though Romancing The Stone can't ever hope to measure up to Indy's first outting onto film, it's still a pretty thrilling ride. Heck, with a solid script of love from opposite sides of the hemisphere and it's high caliber serial-themed action scenes, this movie is actually good enough that it could've had a higher entry in the hierarchy of 80's adventure flicks... if it wasn't for that goddamn Ark.

Probably the most ultimate rockumentary mockumentary film ever.
This Is Spinal Tap is a film that follows an aging rock band called Spinal Tap (duh..!) around as they try to keep it together, keep it real and keep it rocking.
And abysmally failing.
This is a movie that works so well with it's premise because not once does the story pause to try to and proclaim to it's audience, "Hey, look at me, I'm being funny!". It doesn't have time actually, since it's too busy trying to fill every second of film with satirical wit. And it's because of this combo of endless music-industry mockery with lack of winking that makes it easy to miss some of it's humor if you, as a viewer, allow yourself to lag too much in attention.

People who added this item 36 Average listal rating (19 ratings) 8.5 IMDB Rating 8.3
The Up Series is a continual set of documentary films that literally lasts a life time. Started in 1964, it documents the lifespans of a select group of individuals, starting at the age of seven and constantly returning to their respective lives every seven years to update their progress in this journey that we all share.
Therefore, there's an updated installment released after the seventh year of the previous film, each titled after the age of the subjects involved in this long-running project.
By the time of 1984, they're up to the age of 28.

Personally, I found it almost spooky and universally telling on the kind of perspective that arises from being a spectator of some else's life other than my own.
After every incarnation of this series, I can't help but ask those deep kinds of questions that are much easier to ask from the outside looking in.
For example, taking the film segments of the various people of this project when they were just children and watching 'em up against the segments of them as adults, I found myself genuinely wondering at what point in life do most of us, as humans, lose the zest and free-spiritedness that naturally comes with being a child, and then have it replaced by the more restrained walking representative of a crushed spirit that we have as adults?
And I can't remember when was the last time any film had the ability to make me get that introspective.
People who added this item 821 Average listal rating (497 ratings) 7.5 IMDB Rating 7.6
Blood Simple. (1984)
Simply because this is the beginning of all things Coen. And in the manner of all things Coen, no more explanation is needed from this point on. And yet again, as in all things Coen, this may be because of either some personal artistic liberty or maybe just because I really don't have anything to say.
Just like all things Coen, it's probably just best to leave you guessing.

I recently watched this again,
and as a thrilling Neo-Noir made back during the 80's, IMO, it holds up exceptionally today. Still one of my favorite Coen Brothers productions.
People who added this item 5444 Average listal rating (3805 ratings) 7.4 IMDB Rating 8.1

This was the first time that Ahnold ever uttered those infamous words
"Ah'll be bock."
And he didn't stop coming bock until we finally elected his blockbuster @ss into office.
I guess that's one way to stop an unstoppable killing cyber-machine.

People who added this item 215 Average listal rating (128 ratings) 6.1 IMDB Rating 6.5
Minnesotian rock star Prince soars to 80's iconic status in this semi (very semi)-autobiographical yarn about a Kid and his music.
The leader of The Revolution, he plays at a club that acts as a step towards stardom for any musical act with dreams and ambitions of making it. And one such act comes in the form of a voluptious singer named Apollonia. Who, after a failed attempt of purification, ends up riding with the Kid, both on his bike and on his journey to Purple Reign.

Okay, okay, so maybe the non-musical parts of the Kid's debut film leave something to be desired.
But this 1984 rock 'n' roll anomaly featuring the Minneapolis funk acts Prince, the Revolution, the Time and Apollonia-6, contains concert performances that, along with their charismatically maneuvered dance moves, are some of the most energetic ever caught on film.
And all the songs, each one penned by the main musical mini-might star of this show, culminate into one of the best movie soundtracks ever recorded.

This film could very well be my favorite movie of the year, if only I ever get the chance to watch the full four hour unedited version which it's director and co-scripter, Sergio Leone had originally intended to be released.
As it stands, this story comes off as a bit too choppy and the script a bit awkward. There are missing bits of plot that, I assume, would've better established much more the emotional impact on various story-points.
Whenever I watch this movie, I tend to keep thinking on what could've been on screen instead of what is actually there.
Therefore, until I get to see this movie in it's uninhibited entirety, this is where it stands for me.
People who added this item 532 Average listal rating (366 ratings) 6.5 IMDB Rating 7
Starman (1984)

An alien being comes down to Earth, morphs into a human form in order to understand our species and then begins a race against time to meet with his star-faring rendezvous party before the government military can get it's hands on him/it. But not before he/it can get a girl pregnant.
Simply put,
this movie is E.T. for adults.
Or at least, it's for those of us whose mind's are mature enough to understand that when it comes to traffic lights, red means "stop", green means "go" and yellow means "go very fast".
   Here's a documentary that follows the daily existence of several homeless young people in an area that was pretty much set as a place to prosper. Just that description itself makes it evident that there's an obvious contradiction present in the story that came out of this venture. 
Nine lives are the subject of Streetwise, teenagers who have either been castaway or who have runaway, depending upon the unfortunate nature of their respective situation. Genrally, it is normally assumed that we are living in a time when the governments of most of civilized society are set up with various programs, sevices and charities with the primary purpose of helping those citizens who find themselves without the means to sustain a roof over their heads. But a documentary such as this one reveals that sometimes it's not as simple as what is written in these programs that can help people as the ones being depicted in this film. Through the power of moving pictures, what we see in this reality based drama are the "cracks" that one can easily fall through when the support is not there on the fundamental foundation that it is generally supposed that we are all to be born into. We see that there are times when the solution lies far beyond the ones that urge us not to make eye contact in order to avoid enabling those who have to put their hands out in order to simply eat. Each story, each individual situation comes about in it's own unique circumstance based on the random elements that occur, and can only occur, within those lives that are separated from all others in this world. In other words, whatever answers that try to focus on the heart of the problem, the question of why can often be much more complicated than the solution(s) of how to "fix" it.

  Streetwise's 91minutes of running time is a journey that emcompasses a very tiny sliver of time and space that occupied this lifetime and would easily have been forgotten if not for this documentary. In the end, it all wraps into one of the most emotionally wrenching endings ever captured on film.
 Because it's real life and not a script. 

I am one of in the minority who likes this better than the Last Crusade. While I feel that LC's story was stronger and more down to Earth, for me, the Temple Of Doom action's sequences, while many times cartoonishly unrealistic, still were done with a lot of energy and suspense. Plus, IMO, the stunts didn't seem to try to copy the first Indy film as much as LC did. I remember all the hootin' and hollerin' that was going on the theater during TOD, whereas LC, as exciting as it was, didn't seem to invoke as much from the audience (at least, that was the case when I went to go see it). And when it comes to listing my favorites, there are times where my experience in the theater tends to influence my take on the film.

People who added this item 509 Average listal rating (296 ratings) 7.6 IMDB Rating 7.8
A true life tale of a journalist's journey of survival that provides a brutal and revealing look at the aftermath of the communist takeover of Cambodia and the re-"disciplining" of it's population.

People who added this item 5428 Average listal rating (3693 ratings) 7.2 IMDB Rating 7.8
Ghostbusters (1984)

Ghostbusters is a fun, 80's summer-blockbuster defining sci-fi comedy that not only features Bill Murray at his sharpest and Sigourney Weaver at her sexiest (even though at one point, she does turn into a dog....), but also cool specials effects, a couple of proton packs, sliming goblins, a key master, a gatekeeper, streams crossing, cats & dogs living together, not to mention one really big "Twinkie".
Oh, and also, a really crappy theme song. Let's not forget that really crappy song.

In this story, the dead are starting to rise on the streets of New York. Well, more so that usual that is. And at the center of it all, is the head ghost demon known as Gozer The Destructor. Who, even in marshmallow form, is still a destructor. So when ol' Goze decides to start giganticly rampaging down through the avenues of the Big Apple, who you gonna call....?
Oh alright, I know, I know.....

It's an overused cliche phrase that hasn't been used since back during the eighties.
I'll never use one from this particular decade again.
I promise......
People who added this item 2836 Average listal rating (1842 ratings) 6.6 IMDB Rating 7.2

People who added this item 2455 Average listal rating (1541 ratings) 8 IMDB Rating 8.3
Amadeus (1984)
I avoided this film for years, under the assumption that it's subject matter was just something that I would absolutely no interest in.
Then one day, as it aired on one of those "classic" movie channels on T.V., I decided to finally give it a chance, just to see what all that Oscar hype back in '84 was all about.
Turns out, this film isn't so much a historical retelling of classical-music pioneer, Mozart, as it a homage to the creative process of a genius who's talent was masked by both his almost hippie like eccentricity and by the conservativeness of the times. The ease of Mozart's ability to conjure up music that would stand the test of time was only recognized and appreciated by his "best friend" and rivalous contemporary, the more forgotten Salieri.
For me, the true test of any film that centers on the art of artist is the ability for it to make me appreciate (and maybe even like) the art more than I did before I watched the film. Maybe, in my case it was more the result of ignorance than anything else, I wasn't into Mozart's stuff. After viewing this movie though, as far as his music is concerned, I walked away with my eyes a little more opened & my ears a little more enriched.
Rock me, Amadeus.*

* Don't any of you dare roll your eyes at that last sentence. You knew it was gonna come sometime.

It's 1984 and these are the top 25 films according to my own hoity-toity arrogant opinions.

I will always remember 1984 for the summer movie season which saw the release of the original Ghostbusters, Karate Kid, Temple of Doom and Purple Rain (a movie that made me a huge fan of Prince's music).
It was also the year that the first Coen Bros. movie, Blood Simple, was released. I don't have many guilty pleasures, but three of my favorite from the 80s came out this year, Streets of Fire, Ice Pirates and the Last Starfighter. 16 Candles was in theaters this year, two of my favorite documentaries were also playing on the sliver screen, Street Wise and another chapter of the 7 Up series, not to mention the mockumentary, Spinal Tap. Starman was an excellent sc-fi surprise for me that year, and Once Upon A Time in America also made it's theatric debut, altho I enjoyed the later-to-come director's cut a lot more. Rounding out the year were three great Oscar darlings, The Killing Fields, Places in the Heart, and my favorite film of the whole year, Amadeus.
And on a final note, 1984 is also the year that Ahnold first spoke the immortal words "Ah'll be bock" in the first installment of the Terminator franchise.

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