The Best 80s Horror Movies Films
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The Best 80s Horror Movies

List Criteria: Movies in the horror genre that were originally released in the 1980s

This list of the best 80s horror movies is a lengthy one, with good reason. The 1980s were a phenomenal decade for horror films, with some of the best, scariest, creepiest and in some cases, campiest films ever made. Several of the greatest horror films ever made were released in the 80s. This list of the top scary films from the 1980s is by no means complete, so feel free to vote for your favorites and please, add any great ones that are missing. You can also rerank this list any way you like.

The 1980s ushered in a kind of golden age for horror movies, with so many titles coming out so fast that it was difficult to keep up. Every week, a handful of new and freaky horror films were released in theaters. And sequels? Oh good grief, the sequels! '80s horror movies included the originals and sequels for the wildly popular Nightmare on Elm Street, Evil Dead, and Friday the 13th franchises. Halloween, while released in the late-1970s, did spawn several sequels released in the 80s.

While slasher horror films and monster movies have existed since the early days of cinema, the genre reached its height in the 1980s. Every major horror film, with a handful of exceptions, featured some sort of psycho killer on the loose, stalking poor, helpless (and clueless!) teenagers. Sometimes these killers were human, other times they were aliens or – gasp!murderous clowns. Graphic violence was the norm, the shock value kept going higher and higher, and these films were certainly among the most nausea-inducing great films of all time.

Need more horror? Check out the best 1990s horror movies as well!
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  1. 1
    Up 407
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    most listed Johnny Depp, Robert Englund, Lin Shaye

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  2. 2
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    Jack Nicholson, Shelley Duvall, Scatman Crothers

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  3. 3
    Up 321
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    Kurt Russell, Keith David, John Carpenter

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  4. 4
    Up 321
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    Craig T. Nelson, Heather O'Rourke, Zelda Rubinstein

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  5. 5
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    Stephen King, Fred Gwynne, Denise Crosby

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  6. 6
    Up 314
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    Kevin Bacon, Tom Savini, Betsy Palmer

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  7. 7
    Up 275
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    Doug Bradley, Kenneth Nelson, Andrew Robinson

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  8. 8
    Up 292
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    the people's #1 Sigourney Weaver, Bill Paxton, Paul Reiser

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  9. 9
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    Frank Oz, Rik Mayall, Jenny Agutter

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  10. 10
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    Jamie Lee Curtis, Dana Carvey, Kyle Richards

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  11. 11
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    Bruce Campbell, Kassie DePaiva, Ted Raimi

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  12. 12
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    Kiefer Sutherland, Corey Feldman, Corey Haim

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  13. 13
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    Steven Spielberg, Corey Feldman, Phoebe Cates

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  14. 14
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    often listed & ranked high on reranks Geena Davis, Jeff Goldblum, David Cronenberg

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  15. 15
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    often listed & ranked high on reranks Clu Gulager, James Karen, Linnea Quigley

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  16. 16
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    Christopher Lee, Roddy McDowall, Chris Sarandon

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  17. 17
    Up 268
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    ranked low on reranks Bruce Campbell, Sam Raimi, Ted Raimi

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  18. 18
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    Brad Dourif, Catherine Hicks, Dinah Manoff

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  19. 19
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    Linda Hamilton, Peter Horton, R. G. Armstrong

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  20. 20
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    often listed & ranked high on reranks Barbara Crampton, Jeffrey Combs, James Ellis

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  21. 21
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    John Sayles, John Carradine, Patrick Macnee

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  22. 22
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    Jamie Lee Curtis, Janet Leigh, Tom Welling

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  23. 23
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    ranked low on reranks & added by shaneoram2d Max von Sydow, Ellen Burstyn, Linda Blair

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  24. 24
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    Stephen King, Ed Harris, Ted Danson

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  25. 25
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    Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jesse Ventura, Carl Weathers

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  26. 26
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    Betsy Palmer, Lauren-Marie Taylor, Rex Everhart

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  27. 27
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    often listed & ranked high on reranks Sherman Howard, Jarlath Conroy, Terry Alexander

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  28. 28
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    Jennifer Jason Leigh, Rutger Hauer, C. Thomas Howell

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  29. 29
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    Danielle Harris, Donald Pleasence, Michael Pataki

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  30. 30
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    Kelly Preston, John Madden, Alexandra Paul

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  31. 31
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    ranked low on reranks & added by wiabux Danny Pintauro, Ed Lauter, Dee Wallace

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  32. 32
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    Mayim Bialik, Lance Henriksen, George Buck Flower

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  33. 33
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    James Karen, Allan Trautman, Forrest J Ackerman

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  34. 34
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    Dan Aykroyd, Albert Brooks, John Lithgow

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  35. 35
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    George Wendt, Richard Moll, Kay Lenz

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  36. 36
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    Patrick McGoohan, Jennifer O'Neill, Michael Ironside

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  37. 37
    Up 132
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    ranked low on reranks Corey Feldman, Crispin Glover, Peter Barton

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  38. 38
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    Dennis Hopper, Kinky Friedman, Bill Moseley

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  39. 39
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    Corey Feldman, Tony Goldwyn, Ron Palillo

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  40. 40
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    Mike Kellin, Robert Earl Jones, Felissa Rose

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  41. 41
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    Bill Paxton, Lance Henriksen, Adrian Pasdar

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  42. 42
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    Danielle Harris, Donald Pleasence, Beau Starr

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  43. 43
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    George C. Scott, Melvyn Douglas, Barry Morse

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  44. 44
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    Jamie Lee Curtis, Brittany Snow, Leslie Nielsen

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  45. 45
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    Anthony Perkins, Dennis Franz, Vera Miles

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  46. 46
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    ranked low on reranks & added by CassiopeeLeduc Laurence Fishburne, Patricia Arquette, Zsa Zsa Gábor

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  47. 47
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    Bill Pullman, Paul Winfield, Michael Gough

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  48. 48
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    Don Francks, Helene Udy, Keith Knight

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  49. 49
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    Barbara Crampton, William Hickey, Irene Miracle

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  50. 50
    Up 54
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    ranked low on reranks & added by CassiopeeLeduc Corey Haim, Gary Busey, Terry O'Quinn

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