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The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked

Updated September 28, 2020 560.9k votes 20.2k voters 525.4k views522 items

List RulesMovies must have been released during the 1980s

Since it was one of the greatest decades for film, here's a list of the best movies of the 80s. These are some of the most popular and famous films of the 1980s. While the 1980s is largely known for Matthew Broderick, John Cusack, and the iconic musical montage, it is also the decade that brought us The Empire Strikes Back, the cult classic They Live, and all three of the good Indiana Jones films. The movies on this list were each a top ten grossing film in the year they were released. If you're looking to find out what the 1980's were all about, then watching a classic movie on this list would be a great place to start! Vote on the best '80s movies and share your super '80s knowledge with the world!

What are the best movies of the 1980s? This list will give you that answer because it is far more than just a top 10, 50, or even 100 best '80s movies list.

You might want to also check out other greatl lists like: the best 90s movies and 17 Movies That No '80s Kid Is Nostalgic About.

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  • 1
    Star Wars Episode V: The Empir is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked
    6,386
    2,359

    Released1980

    Directed byIrvin Kershner

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  • 2
    The Goonies is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked
    5,002
    1,322

    The Goonies

    Corey Feldman, Josh Brolin

    Released1985

    Directed byRichard Donner

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  • 3
    Ferris Bueller's Day Off is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked
    5,009
    1,817

    Ferris Bueller's Day Off

    Charlie Sheen, Matthew Broderick

    Released1986

    Directed byJohn Hughes

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  • 4
    The Breakfast Club is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked
    5,531
    1,580

    The Breakfast Club

    Judd Nelson, Molly Ringwald

    Released1985

    Directed byJohn Hughes

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  • 5
    The Princess Bride is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked
    4,268
    1,589

    The Princess Bride

    Billy Crystal, Robin Wright

    Released1987

    Directed byRob Reiner

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  • 6
    Top Gun is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked
    3,266
    1,147

    Top Gun

    Tom Cruise, Meg Ryan

    Released1986

    Directed byTony Scott

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  • 7
    Stand by Me is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked
    3,959
    1,087

    Stand by Me

    Kiefer Sutherland, Corey Feldman

    Released1986

    Directed byRob Reiner

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  • 8
    Beverly Hills Cop is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked
    2,970
    1,079

    Beverly Hills Cop

    Eddie Murphy, Damon Wayans

    Released1984

    Directed byMartin Brest

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  • 9
    National Lampoon's Christmas V is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked
    3,430
    1,094

    National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation

    Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Chevy Chase

    Released1989

    Directed byJeremiah S. Chechik

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  • 10
    The Terminator is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked
    5,061
    1,965

    The Terminator

    Arnold Schwarzenegger, Bill Paxton

    Released1984

    Directed byJames Cameron

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  • 11
    Back to the Future is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked
    7,235
    2,921

    Back to the Future

    Michael J. Fox, Christopher Lloyd

    Released1985

    Directed byRobert Zemeckis

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  • 12
    The Karate Kid is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked
    4,184
    1,538

    The Karate Kid

    Elisabeth Shue, Ralph Macchio

    Released1984

    Directed byJohn G. Avildsen

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  • 13
    The Lost Boys is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked
    2,407
    869

    The Lost Boys

    Kiefer Sutherland, Corey Feldman

    Released1987

    Directed byJoel Schumacher

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  • 14
    Lethal Weapon is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked
    3,233
    1,259

    Lethal Weapon

    Mel Gibson, Gary Busey

    Released1987

    Directed byRichard Donner

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  • 15
    Sixteen Candles is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked
    2,372
    829

    Sixteen Candles

    John Cusack, Molly Ringwald

    Released1984

    Directed byJohn Hughes

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  • 16
    Back to the Future Part II is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked
    3,778
    1,535

    Back to the Future Part II

    Michael J. Fox, Elisabeth Shue

    Released1989

    Directed byRobert Zemeckis

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  • 17
    Big is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked
    3,726
    1,393

    Big

    Tom Hanks, Jon Lovitz

    Released1988

    Directed byPenny Marshall

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  • 18
    Star Wars: Episode VI - Return is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked
    4,792
    2,032

    Star Wars: Episode VI - Return of the Jedi

    Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher

    Released1983

    Directed byRichard Marquand

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  • 19
    Vacation is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked
    2,589
    962

    Vacation

    Chevy Chase, Christie Brinkley

    Released1983

    Directed byHarold Ramis

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  • 20
    Aliens is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked
    3,091
    1,253

    Aliens

    Sigourney Weaver, Bill Paxton

    Released1986

    Directed byJames Cameron

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  • 21
    Caddyshack is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked
    2,222
    870

    Caddyshack

    Bill Murray, Chevy Chase

    Released1980

    Directed byHarold Ramis

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  • 22
    Indiana Jones and the Last Cru is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked
    3,872
    1,692

    Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade

    Harrison Ford, Sean Connery

    Released1989

    Directed bySteven Spielberg

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  • 23
    Predator is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked
    2,277
    912

    Predator

    Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jesse Ventura

    Released1987

    Directed byJohn McTiernan

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  • 24
    Beetlejuice is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked
    3,741
    1,614

    Beetlejuice

    Alec Baldwin, Winona Ryder

    Released1988

    Directed byTim Burton

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  • 25
    Ghostbusters is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked
    5,203
    2,407

    Ghostbusters

    Bill Murray, Sigourney Weaver

    Released1984

    Directed byIvan Reitman

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