Entertainment

The Best Alien Movies of the '80s  

Ranker Film
2k votes 381 voters 31.4k views 40 items

List Rules Vote up your favorite alien films that were released in the 1980s.

These best 1980s Alien movies are absolutely out of this world. With so many classic alien movies from the 80s to choose from, which will you vote for? Whether you're looking for 80s alien movies with epic battles or something more mysterious or charming, you'll find something you're looking for below.

A parody of George Lucas' Star WarsSpaceballs is certainly one of the most memorable (and funniest) alien movies of the 1980s. Mel Brooks had done it again with Rick Moranis and John Candy, creating one of his most epic 1980s alien films. Recite funny lines like "Lightspeed is too slow. We'll have to go right to ludicrous speed" as you quickly vote on this movie as your pick for 1980s alien movie. 

You can't vote on this list without mentioning the critically acclaimed, classic Steven Spielberg alien movie of the 80s, E.T. the Extra Terrestrial. This movie skyrocketed Drew Barrymore to major child stardom, and is not only one of the greatest 1980s alien films, but one of the best movies of all time.

With so many to choose from, which amazing 80s alien movies will you rank to the top? Help shape this list by casting your votes!


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Sigourney Weaver, Bill Paxton, Michael Biehn
Aliens is a 1986 American science-fiction action horror film written and directed by James Cameron, produced by his then-wife Gale Anne Hurd, and starring Sigourney Weaver, Carrie Henn, Michael ...more

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#175 of 336 'Old' Movies Every Young Person Needs To Watch In Their Lifetime #2 of 193 The Best Alien Movies Ever Madelisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

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Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jesse Ventura, Carl Weathers
Predator is a 1987 American science fiction action film directed by John McTiernan and was distributed by 20th Century Fox. It stars Arnold Schwarzenegger, Carl Weathers, Elpidia Carrillo, Bill ...more

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#68 of 336 'Old' Movies Every Young Person Needs To Watch In Their Lifetime #3 of 193 The Best Alien Movies Ever Madefeaturing Somehow, Making Predator Was WAY More Insane Than The Actual Movie

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Drew Barrymore, Erika Eleniak, Debra Winger
E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial is a 1982 American science fiction-family film co-produced and directed by Steven Spielberg and written by Melissa Mathison, featuring special effects by Carlo ...more

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#12 of 336 'Old' Movies Every Young Person Needs To Watch In Their Lifetimefeaturing The Dark Story Behind The Cancelled Sequel To E.T. The Extra-Terrestriallisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

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Kurt Russell, Keith David, John Carpenter
The Thing is a 1982 American science fiction horror film directed by John Carpenter, written by Bill Lancaster, and starring Kurt Russell. The film's title refers to its primary antagonist: a ...more

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#115 of 258 The Best Psychological Thrillers of All Time #14 of 193 The Best Alien Movies Ever Made #7 of 769 The Best Horror Movies of All Time

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Joan Rivers, John Hurt, Mel Brooks
Spaceballs is a 1987 American parody film co-written and directed by Mel Brooks and starring Brooks, Bill Pullman, John Candy and Rick Moranis. It also features Daphne Zuniga, Dick Van Patten, ...more

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#44 of 336 'Old' Movies Every Young Person Needs To Watch In Their Lifetime #32 of 193 The Best Alien Movies Ever Madefeaturing Feel The Schwartz With The Funniest 'Spaceballs' Quotes

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Dennis Quaid, Louis Gossett, Jr.
Enemy Mine is a 1985 science fiction drama film directed by Wolfgang Petersen based on the story of the same name by Barry B. Longyear. It starred Dennis Quaid and Louis Gossett, Jr. as a human ...more

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#64 of 193 The Best Alien Movies Ever Made #545 of 719 The Best Black Movies Ever Made, Ranked #441 of 575 The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked

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Ed Harris, Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio, Chris Elliott
The Abyss is a 1989 American science fiction-adventure film written and directed by James Cameron, starring Ed Harris, Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio, and Michael Biehn. When an American submarine ...more

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#200 of 336 'Old' Movies Every Young Person Needs To Watch In Their Lifetime #34 of 193 The Best Alien Movies Ever Madelisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

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Roddy Piper, Keith David, Tommy Morrison
They Live is a 1988 American science fiction film written and directed by John Carpenter. The film stars Roddy Piper, Keith David, and Meg Foster. It follows a nameless drifter referred to as ...more

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#52 of 193 The Best Alien Movies Ever Made #116 of 769 The Best Horror Movies of All Timefeaturing More Than An '80s B-Movie, 'They Live' Is A Surprisingly Savvy Prediction Of Modern Life

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Sarah Jessica Parker, Paul Reubens, Veronica Cartwright
Flight of the Navigator is a 1986 comic science fiction film directed by Randal Kleiser and written by Mark H. Baker and Michael Burton, about David Freeman, a 12-year-old boy who is taken by an ...more

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#176 of 336 'Old' Movies Every Young Person Needs To Watch In Their Lifetime #60 of 193 The Best Alien Movies Ever Made #179 of 575 The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked

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Billy Zane, Dee Wallace, M. Emmet Walsh
Critters is a 1986 cult comedy horror science fiction film starring Dee Wallace-Stone, M. Emmet Walsh, Billy Green Bush and Scott Grimes. It was the directorial debut of Stephen Herek who ...more

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#143 of 193 The Best Alien Movies Ever Made #244 of 769 The Best Horror Movies of All Time #188 of 439 The Funniest '80s Movies

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Steve Guttenberg, Clint Howard, Brian Dennehy
Cocoon is a 1985 science fiction film directed by Ron Howard about a group of elderly people rejuvenated by aliens. The movie stars Don Ameche, Wilford Brimley, Hume Cronyn, Brian Dennehy, Jack ...more

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#143 of 336 'Old' Movies Every Young Person Needs To Watch In Their Lifetime #78 of 193 The Best Alien Movies Ever Madelisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

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Jessica Tandy, Luis Guzmán, Hume Cronyn
Batteries Not Included is a 1987 family-comic science fiction film directed by Matthew Robbins about small extraterrestrial living machines that save an apartment block under threat from ...more

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#180 of 336 'Old' Movies Every Young Person Needs To Watch In Their Lifetime #137 of 439 The Funniest '80s Movies #404 of 582 The Greatest Film Scores of All Time

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Wil Wheaton, Robert Preston, Catherine Mary Stewart
The Last Starfighter is a 1984 American space opera film directed by Nick Castle. The film tells the story of Alex Rogan, an average teenage boy recruited by an alien defense force to fight in ...more

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#193 of 336 'Old' Movies Every Young Person Needs To Watch In Their Lifetime #56 of 193 The Best Alien Movies Ever Made #327 of 630 The Greatest Guilty Pleasure Movies

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Jeff Bridges, John Carpenter, Karen Allen
Starman is a 1984 American romantic science fiction film, directed by John Carpenter, that tells the story of an alien who has come to Earth in response to the invitation found on the gold ...more

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#94 of 193 The Best Alien Movies Ever Made #680 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #141 of 198 The Biggest Tearjerker Movies of All Time

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The Transformers: The Mo... is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Alien Movies of the '80s
James Arthur Fritz added Orson Welles, Judd Nelson, Leonard Nimoy
The Transformers: The Movie is a 1986 animated feature film based on the animated TV series by the same name. It was released in North America on August 8, 1986 and in the UK on December 5, ...more

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#197 of 600 The Best Animated Films Ever #27 of 52 Which Nerd Favorite Has The Most Annoying Fans? #266 of 575 The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked

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Christopher Titus, John Vernon, Royal Dano
Killer Klowns from Outer Space is a 1988 American science fiction horror comedy movie made by The Chiodo Brothers and starring Grant Cramer and Suzanne Snyder. It is the only Chiodo Brothers' ...more

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#164 of 193 The Best Alien Movies Ever Made #282 of 630 The Greatest Guilty Pleasure Movies #241 of 769 The Best Horror Movies of All Time

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James Caan, Terence Stamp, Mandy Patinkin
Alien Nation is a 1988 American science fiction action film directed by Graham Baker. The ensemble cast features James Caan, Mandy Patinkin and Terence Stamp. The film depicts the assimilation ...more

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#110 of 193 The Best Alien Movies Ever Made #50 of 61 The Best Buddy Cop Movies #283 of 567 The Greatest Sci-Fi Movies of All Time

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Ethan Hawke, River Phoenix, James Cromwell
Explorers is a 1985 family-oriented science-fiction fantasy film written by Eric Luke and directed by Joe Dante. The film stars Ethan Hawke and River Phoenix as teenage schoolboys who build a ...more

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#280 of 336 'Old' Movies Every Young Person Needs To Watch In Their Lifetime #174 of 193 The Best Alien Movies Ever Made #215 of 439 The Funniest '80s Movies

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Jennifer Aniston, Nikki Cox, Danny Cooksey
Mac and Me is a 1988 American science fiction adventure film co-written and directed by Stewart Raffill about a "Mysterious Alien Creature" that escapes from nefarious NASA agents and ...more

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#524 of 630 The Greatest Guilty Pleasure Movies #135 of 155 The Best Science Fiction Action Movies #98 of 99 The Greatest Kids Sci-Fi Movies

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Christopher Walken, Andreas Katsulas, Frances Sternhagen
Communion is a 1989 drama/thriller film based on the book of the same name by Whitley Strieber. Starring Christopher Walken and Frances Sternhagen, it tells a story of a family that experiences ...more
21
Repo Man is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Alien Movies of the '80s
timweber added Jimmy Buffett, Emilio Estevez, Harry Dean Stanton
Repo Man is a 1984 American science fiction comedy film directed by Alex Cox. It was produced by Jonathan Wacks and Peter McCarthy, with executive producer Michael Nesmith, and stars Harry Dean ...more

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#124 of 193 The Best Alien Movies Ever Made #80 of 304 The Greatest Soundtracks of All Time #849 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies

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Transformers is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Alien Movies of the '80s
James Arthur Fritz added Megan Fox, Shia LaBeouf, Odette Annable
Transformers is a 2007 American science fiction action film directed by Michael Bay, based on the toy line. An ancient struggle between two Cybertronian races, the heroic Autobots and the evil ...more

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#59 of 193 The Best Alien Movies Ever Made #78 of 630 The Greatest Guilty Pleasure Moviesfeaturing All the Transformers In The Michael Bay Transformers Movies

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G.I. Joe: The Movie is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Alien Movies of the '80s
James Arthur Fritz added Don Johnson, Burgess Meredith, Sgt. Slaughter
G.I. Joe: The Movie is a 1987 animated film spin-off from the animated series G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero, based on the original Hasbro toyline. It was produced by Sunbow Productions and ...more

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#386 of 600 The Best Animated Films Ever #286 of 303 The Best Military Movies Ever Made #47 of 97 The Greatest Kids Movies of the 1980s

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Patrick Stewart, Mathilda May, Peter Firth
Lifeforce is a 1985 science fiction, horror film directed by Tobe Hooper and written by Dan O'Bannon and Don Jakoby, based on Colin Wilson's 1976 novel, The Space Vampires. Featuring Steve ...more

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#440 of 769 The Best Horror Movies of All Time #49 of 202 The Best Zombie Horror Films #65 of 151 The Best Zombie Movies of All Time

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Jim Carrey, Geena Davis, Jeff Goldblum
Earth Girls Are Easy is a 1988 American musical romantic comedy film directed by Julien Temple and stars Geena Davis, Julie Brown, Jeff Goldblum, Damon Wayans, and Jim Carrey. The plot is based ...more

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