award shows The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s  

Ranker Film
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De Niro. Hepburn. Winfrey. The biggest movies of the 1980s captured audiences' imaginations thanks to outstanding performances by some of Hollywood's biggest stars. These are the 1980s movies nominated for Best Picture at the Academy Awards. These prize-winning films took viewers around the globe, from the rivers of India to the rural Pennsylvania countryside. Whatever the setting, these Oscar nominees and winners continue to win over new fans to this day.

What films will you find on this list of 1980s Oscar winners? Tom Cruise made the transition from teen heartthrob to dramatic actor throughout the 1980s. The star appeared in Oscar-nominated films including Rain Man and Born on the Fourth of July. The nostalgia-fueled dramedy The Big Chill – and its even bigger soundtrack – was also a hit with fans and Oscar voters in the '80s.

In 1985, Out of Africa beat such other great films as The Color Purple and Witness for the Best Picture trophy. Other good films on this top 1980s Oscar nominated movies list include Hannah and Her Sisters, Moonstruck, and Field of Dreams.

What's the very best flick among these Oscar-nominated 1980s films? That's up to you to decide. Give your favorite movies a thumbs up to move them to the number one spot on the list.
list ordered by

1
23 5
Indiana Jones and the Raiders ... is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark Harrison Ford, Alfred Molina, Karen Allen Nominated in 1981. Raiders of the Lost Ark is a 1981 American adventure film directed by Steven Spielberg. The screenplay by Lawrence Kasdan was from a story by George Lucas and Philip Kaufman. It was produced by ...more

2
18 7
E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial Drew Barrymore, Erika Eleniak, Debra Winger Nominated in 1982. 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

3
14 6
Raging Bull is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
Raging Bull Robert De Niro, Joe Pesci, Martin Scorsese Nominated in 1980. Raging Bull is a 1980 American biographical black-and-white sports drama film directed by Martin Scorsese, produced by Robert Chartoff and Irwin Winkler and adapted by Paul Schrader and Mardik ...more

4
10 3
Rain Man is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
Rain Man Tom Cruise, Dustin Hoffman, Valeria Golino Won Best Picture in 1988. Rain Man is a 1988 American drama film directed by Barry Levinson and written by Barry Morrow and Ronald Bass. It tells the story of an abrasive and selfish yuppie, Charlie Babbitt, who ...more

5
10 3
Platoon is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
Platoon Johnny Depp, Charlie Sheen, Willem Dafoe Won Best Picture in 1986. Platoon is a 1986 American war film written and directed by Oliver Stone and starring Tom Berenger, Willem Dafoe and Charlie Sheen. It is the first film of a trilogy of Vietnam War films by ...more

6
10 5
The Elephant Man is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
The Elephant Man Anthony Hopkins, John Hurt, Anne Bancroft Nominated in 1980. The Elephant Man is a 1980 American-British biographical film about Joseph Merrick, a severely deformed man in 19th century London. The film was directed by David Lynch and stars John Hurt, ...more

7
10 5
Amadeus is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
Amadeus Jeffrey Jones, Cynthia Nixon, Christine Ebersole Won Best Picture in 1984. Amadeus - Directors Cut is a 1984 biography drama film written by Peter Shaffer and directed by Milos Forman.

8
9 5
Tootsie is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
Tootsie Bill Murray, Dustin Hoffman, Geena Davis Nominated in 1982. Tootsie is a 1982 American comedy-drama film that tells the story of a talented but volatile actor whose reputation for being difficult forces him to adopt a new identity as a woman to land a ...more

9
8 4
My Left Foot is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
My Left Foot Daniel Day-Lewis, Fiona Shaw, Brenda Fricker Nominated in 1989. My Left Foot: The Story of Christy Brown is a 1989 Irish drama film directed by Jim Sheridan and starring Daniel Day-Lewis. It tells the story of Christy Brown, an Irishman born with cerebral ...more

10
7 3
Hannah and Her Sisters is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
Hannah and Her Sisters Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Woody Allen, Carrie Fisher Nominated in 1986. Hannah and Her Sisters is a 1986 American comedy-drama film which tells the intertwined stories of an extended family over two years that begins and ends with a family Thanksgiving dinner. The ...more

11
5 1
Children of a Lesser God is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
Children of a Lesser God William Hurt, Marlee Matlin, Piper Laurie Nominated in 1986. Children of a Lesser God is a 1986 American romantic drama film directed by Randa Haines and written by Hesper Anderson and Mark Medoff. An adaptation of Medoff's Tony Award–winning stage play ...more

12
9 6
Terms of Endearment is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
Terms of Endearment Jack Nicholson, Danny DeVito, John Lithgow Won Best Picture in 1983. Terms of Endearment is a 1983 comedy-drama film adapted from the novel of the same name by Larry McMurtry, directed, written, and produced by James L. Brooks and starring Shirley MacLaine, Debra ...more

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13
6 3
Chariots of Fire is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
Chariots of Fire Stephen Fry, Kenneth Branagh, Ian Holm Won Best Picture in 1981. Chariots of Fire is a 1981 British historical drama film. It tells the fact-based story of two athletes in the 1924 Olympics: Eric Liddell, a devout Scottish Christian who runs for the glory of ...more

14
6 3
The Killing Fields is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
The Killing Fields John Malkovich, Craig T. Nelson, Sam Waterston Nominated in 1984. The Killing Fields is a 1984 British drama film set in Democratic Kampuchea, which is based on the experiences of two journalists: Cambodian Dith Pran and American Sydney Schanberg. The film, ...more

15
9 7
Dead Poets Society is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
Dead Poets Society Robin Williams, Ethan Hawke, Lara Flynn Boyle Nominated in 1989. Dead Poets Society is a 1989 American drama film written by Tom Schulman, directed by Peter Weir and starring Robin Williams. Set at the conservative and aristocratic Welton Academy in the ...more

16
7 5
On Golden Pond is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
On Golden Pond Jane Fonda, Katharine Hepburn, Henry Fonda Nominated in 1981. On Golden Pond is a 1981 American drama film directed by Mark Rydell. The screenplay by Ernest Thompson was adapted from his 1979 play of the same title. Henry Fonda won the Academy Award for ...more

17
6 4
The Accidental Tourist is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
The Accidental Tourist Kathleen Turner, Geena Davis, William Hurt Nominated in 1988. The Accidental Tourist is a 1988 American drama film starring William Hurt, Kathleen Turner, and Geena Davis. It was directed by Lawrence Kasdan and scored by John Williams. The film's ...more

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18
5 3
Fatal Attraction is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
Fatal Attraction Glenn Close, Michael Douglas, Jane Krakowski Nominated in 1987. Fatal Attraction is a 1987 American psychological thriller film directed by Adrian Lyne and starring Michael Douglas, Glenn Close, and Anne Archer. The film centers on a married Manhattan man ...more

19
5 3
The Big Chill is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
The Big Chill Glenn Close, Kevin Kline, Jeff Goldblum Nominated in 1983. The Big Chill is a 1983 American comedy-drama film directed by Lawrence Kasdan, starring Tom Berenger, Glenn Close, Jeff Goldblum, William Hurt, Kevin Kline, Mary Kay Place, Meg Tilly, and ...more

20
4 2
Prizzi's Honor is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
Prizzi's Honor Jack Nicholson, Kathleen Turner, Anjelica Huston Nominated in 1985. Prizzi's Honor is a 1985 American film directed by John Huston. It stars Jack Nicholson, Kathleen Turner, Robert Loggia and, in an Academy Award-winning performance, the director's daughter ...more

21
4 2
The Right Stuff is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
The Right Stuff Jeff Goldblum, Ed Harris, Dennis Quaid Nominated in 1983. The Right Stuff is a 1983 American drama film that was adapted from Tom Wolfe's best-selling 1979 book of the same name about the Navy, Marine and Air Force test pilots who were involved in ...more

22
4 2
Working Girl is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
Working Girl Alec Baldwin, Harrison Ford, Kevin Spacey Nominated in 1988. Working Girl is a 1988 romantic comedy-drama film written by Kevin Wade and directed by Mike Nichols. It tells the story of a Staten Island-raised secretary, Tess McGill, working in the mergers ...more

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23
4 2
Dangerous Liaisons is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
Dangerous Liaisons Michelle Pfeiffer, Uma Thurman, Keanu Reeves Nominated in 1988. Dangerous Liaisons is a 1988 historical drama film based upon Christopher Hampton's play Les liaisons dangereuses, which in turn was a theatrical adaptation of the 18th-century French novel Les ...more

24
4 2
Coal Miner's Daughter is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
Coal Miner's Daughter Tommy Lee Jones, Sissy Spacek, Beverly DAngelo Nominated in 1980. Coal Miner's Daughter is a 1980 biographical film which tells the story of country music legendary singer Loretta Lynn. It stars Sissy Spacek as Loretta, a role that earned her the Academy Award ...more

25
4 2
Broadcast News is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
Broadcast News Jack Nicholson, John Cusack, Holly Hunter Nominated in 1987. Broadcast News is a 1987 romantic comedy-drama film written, produced and directed by James L. Brooks. The film concerns a virtuoso television news producer, who has daily emotional breakdowns, ...more

26
3 1
Atlantic City is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
Atlantic City Susan Sarandon, Burt Lancaster, Wallace Shawn Nominated in 1981. Atlantic City is a 1980 French-Canadian romantic crime film directed by Louis Malle. Filmed in late 1979, it was released in France and Germany in 1980 and in the United States in 1981. The ...more

27
7 6
Field of Dreams is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
Field of Dreams Ben Affleck, Matt Damon, Kevin Costner Nominated in 1989. Field of Dreams is a 1989 American fantasy-drama film directed by Phil Alden Robinson, who also wrote the screenplay, adapting W. P. Kinsella's novel Shoeless Joe. It stars Kevin Costner, Amy ...more

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28
6 5
Gandhi is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
Gandhi Daniel Day-Lewis, Ben Kingsley, Martin Sheen Won Best Picture in 1982. Gandhi is a 1982 epic biographical film which dramatises the life of Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, the leader of India's non-violent, non-cooperative independence movement against the United ...more

29
5 4
Driving Miss Daisy is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
Driving Miss Daisy Morgan Freeman, Dan Aykroyd, Jessica Tandy Won Best Picture in 1989. Driving Miss Daisy is a 1989 American comedy-drama film adapted from the Alfred Uhry play of the same name. The film was directed by Bruce Beresford, with Morgan Freeman reprising his role as ...more

30
5 4
Witness is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
Witness Harrison Ford, Viggo Mortensen, Danny Glover Nominated in 1985. Witness is a 1985 American thriller film directed by Peter Weir and starring Harrison Ford and Kelly McGillis. The screenplay by William Kelley, Pamela Wallace, and Earl W. Wallace focuses on a ...more

31
4 3
Ordinary People is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
Ordinary People Mary Tyler Moore, Donald Sutherland, Adam Baldwin Won Best Picture in 1980. Ordinary People is a 1980 American drama film that marked the directorial debut of actor Robert Redford. It stars Donald Sutherland, Mary Tyler Moore, Judd Hirsch and Timothy Hutton. The story ...more

32
4 3
Tender Mercies is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
Tender Mercies Robert Duvall, Ellen Barkin, Wilford Brimley Nominated in 1983. Tender Mercies is a 1983 American drama film directed by Bruce Beresford. The screenplay by Horton Foote focuses on Mac Sledge, a recovering alcoholic country music singer who seeks to turn his ...more

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3 2
Tess is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
Tess Nastassja Kinski, Peter Firth, Lesley Dunlop Nominated in 1980. Tess is a 1979 romance film directed by Roman Polanski, an adaptation of Thomas Hardy's 1891 novel Tess of the d'Urbervilles. It tells the story of a strong-willed, young peasant girl who finds ...more

34
6 6
Kiss of the Spider Woman is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
Kiss of the Spider Woman William Hurt, Sônia Braga, Raúl Juliá Nominated in 1985. Kiss of the Spider Woman is a 1985 Brazilian-American drama film directed by Argentine-born Brazilian director Héctor Babenco, and adapted by Leonard Schrader from the Manuel Puig novel ...more

35
5 5
The Color Purple is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
The Color Purple Oprah Winfrey, Whoopi Goldberg, Laurence Fishburne Nominated in 1985. The Color Purple is a 1985 American period drama film directed by Steven Spielberg, based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel of the same name by Alice Walker. It was Spielberg's eighth film as ...more

36
3 3
A Room with a View is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
A Room with a View Daniel Day-Lewis, Helena Bonham Carter, Judi Dench Nominated in 1986. A Room with a View is a British romance drama film directed by James Ivory and produced by Ismail Merchant of E. M. Forster's 1908 novel of the same name. The film follows closely the novel by ...more

37
3 3
The Last Emperor is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
The Last Emperor Peter O'Toole, Joan Chen, Vivian Wu Won Best Picture in 1987. The Last Emperor is a 1987 biographical film about the life of Puyi, the last Emperor of China, whose autobiography was the basis for the screenplay written by Mark Peploe and Bernardo ...more

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38
3 3
Reds is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
Reds Jack Nicholson, Diane Keaton, Gene Hackman Nominated in 1981. Reds is a 1981 epic film that was co-written, produced, and directed by Warren Beatty. The picture centers on the life and career of John Reed, the journalist and writer who chronicled the ...more

39
3 4
Missing is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
Missing Jack Lemmon, Sissy Spacek, Melanie Mayron Nominated in 1982. Missing is a 1982 American drama film directed by Costa-Gavras, starring Jack Lemmon, Sissy Spacek, Melanie Mayron, John Shea, and Charles Cioffi. It is based on the true story of American ...more

40
3 4
Mississippi Burning is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
Mississippi Burning Willem Dafoe, Gene Hackman, Frances McDormand Nominated in 1988. Mississippi Burning is a 1988 American crime thriller film directed by Alan Parker and written by Chris Gerolmo. It was loosely based on the FBI investigation into the murders of three civil ...more

41
2 3
A Passage to India is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
A Passage to India Alec Guinness, Judy Davis, Victor Banerjee Nominated in 1984. A Passage to India is a 1984 drama film written and directed by David Lean. The screenplay is based on the 1924 novel of the same title by E. M. Forster and the 1960 play by Santha Rama Rau that ...more

42
2 3
The Mission is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
The Mission Robert De Niro, Liam Neeson, Jeremy Irons Nominated in 1986. The Mission is a 1986 British drama film about the experiences of a Jesuit missionary in 18th century South America. The film was written by Robert Bolt and directed by Roland Joffé. The ...more

43
3 5
Born on the Fourth of July is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
Born on the Fourth of July Nominated in 1989. Born on the Fourth of July, published in 1976, is the best selling autobiography by Ron Kovic, a paralyzed Vietnam War veteran who became an anti-war activist. Kovic was born on July 4, 1946, ...more

44
2 4
Moonstruck is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
Moonstruck Nicolas Cage, Cher, Danny Aiello Nominated in 1987. Moonstruck is a 1987 American romantic comedy film directed by Norman Jewison and written by John Patrick Shanley. It stars Cher, Nicolas Cage, Danny Aiello, Vincent Gardenia, and Olympia ...more

45
2 5
The Verdict is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
The Verdict Bruce Willis, Paul Newman, Charlotte Rampling Nominated in 1982. The Verdict is a 1982 courtroom drama film that tells the story of a down-on-his-luck alcoholic lawyer who takes a medical malpractice case to improve his own situation, but discovers along the ...more

46
2 5
Out of Africa is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
Out of Africa Meryl Streep, Robert Redford, Iman Abdulmajid Won Best Picture in 1985. Out of Africa is a 1985 American epic romantic drama film directed and produced by Sydney Pollack and starring Robert Redford and Meryl Streep. The film is based loosely on the autobiographical ...more

47
2 5
Places in the Heart is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
Places in the Heart Sally Field, John Malkovich, Ed Harris Nominated in 1984. Places in the Heart is a 1984 American drama film written and directed by Robert Benton about a U.S. Depression-era Texas widow who tries to save the family farm with the help of a blind white ...more

48
1 4
A Soldier's Story is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
A Soldier's Story Denzel Washington, Patti LaBelle, David Alan Grier Nominated in 1984. A Soldier's Story is a 1984 American drama film directed by Norman Jewison, based upon Charles Fuller's Pulitzer Prize-winning Off Broadway production A Soldier's Play. A black officer is sent ...more

49
1 4
The Dresser is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
The Dresser Albert Finney, Michael Gough, Eileen Atkins Nominated in 1983. The Dresser is a successful 1980 West End and Broadway play by Ronald Harwood, which tells the story of an aging actor's personal assistant, who struggles to keep his charge's life together. It ...more

50
1 5
Hope and Glory is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s
Hope and Glory Sarah Miles, Colin Higgins, Charley Boorman Nominated in 1987. Hope and Glory is a 1987 British comedy-drama-war film, written, produced and directed by John Boorman, and based on his own experiences of growing up in the Blitz in London during World War II. ...more