The key to appreciation Purple rain beyond its obvious superficial pleasures is to take it as a twist on a 1930s musical. Think of it set in an old-time vaudeville theater and the story of Minneapolis’s First Avenue concert hall with its house bands practically living there begins to make more sense. But, hey, no one really loved this movie for its story (or, let’s face it, for its acting). Princethe soundtrack of The Revolution (and Morris day and the Time) that consolidated it as a musical classic of the 80s. The final medley of “I Would Die 4 U” in “Baby I’m A Star” is why they invented cameras and lenses. Prince was a charisma machine, and sure, the scenes with his conflicting parents don’t work, but any close-up of his eyes reminds you that this was a man who owned any room he walked into.

Back to the Future (1985)

“Great Scott!” “Think, McFly, think!” “1.21 gigawatts!” Guys, there are definitely a lot of out-of-context lines burned in our collective unconscious thanks to Robert Zemeckisclassic film from the 80s, this family-friendly sci-fi adventure. Michael J. Fox is the adorable teenager who rides a rigged DeLorean with a Flux Capacitor that burns Libyan plutonium and ends up in 1955 … and paradoxically accidentally gets out of existence unless she can get her dad to take her mom to the Enchantment ball under the seas. Along the way, he invents rock ‘n’ roll, freezes the clock tower and kills a baby pine, forever changing the name of a shopping mall. It’s not just one of the best teen movies of the ’80s, but a fun smash hit that still works with audiences of all ages.

I’m looking for Susan desperately (1985)

Considering that Madonna she was one of the biggest pop stars of the 80s (and 90s and beyond) it’s fun to look back on her first movie and see how shoddy and downtown it was. Shot and set in the New York underground art scene (cameos from Rockets Redglare a Limb Lindsay to Golden Annie and many others are amazing!), from this crazy comedy about identity swapped Susan Seidelman is one of the most jaunty, fun and romantic films of the 80s. Rosanna Arquette is a bored hausfrau from New Jersey who takes a trip to Oz after chasing the fickle Susan (Madonna) whose tailor-made lifestyle includes eating Cheez Doodles and crossing state lines in earrings stolen from ancient Egypt. Don’t worry too much about the texture, but watch in wonder Santo Loquastoof production and costumes, which has marked pop culture and music videos for years. Whenever someone says there are no good 80s movies, put it this way.

Racing (1985)

Japanese master Akira Kurosawa was virtually blind when he directed this Shakespeare adaptation King Lear, but had been painting storyboards for a decade. The result is an epic film, ranging from brutal realism battle scenes to dream sequences of natural splendor. (“Wind” is rarely legitimately mentioned as a character in a movie.) Learn the story here changed in three children, and when things get risky between them, things get bloody. The warring factions wave bright flags of primary colors, making this one of the most lavish shows in cinema, even if people are killing each other horribly. Tatsuya Nakadaiwho has starred in five of Kurosawa’s films and in Japanese classics The face of another, KwaidanAnd Portrait of hellit is fascinating as the 16th century feudal lord slowly loses touch with reality as he passes from this world to the other.

Aliens (1986)

Sigourney WeaverRipley’s was not the Very first sci-fi heroine to wear a mech suit, but she was certainly the one that made the most lasting impression. While Ridley Scottis the 1979 film Alien is definitely the best horror movie in space, James Cameron‘S Aliens can be considered the best action and adventure film in space. The premise here (and any upcoming Alien film) is basically the same: “The Company” is stupid enough to think they can trap, contain and harness the power of these ferocious interplanetary beasts, and it doesn’t matter how many of their people die trying to get the job done. Bill Paxton, Jenette Goldstein, Michael Biehn, Launch Henriksen, and more co-stars as Xenomorph Fodder, and things get really disgusting by the end, making it one of the most popular films of the ’80s. Weaver’s toasting turned a corner for women into gun-wielding action roles in a way that felt natural, and running through the air conditioning vents was never the same.

Blue velvet (1986)

Before the invention of the Internet, it took special flames such as a David Lynch movie to bring all the bizarre moths together. Blue velvetdrinking from a magnum opera similar to Lynch’s Twin peaksis an hyperstized psychosexual thriller that mixes kitschy comedy with brutal violence and dark impulses. Kyle MacLachlan he is a university student who visits his provincial house and discovers a severed ear full of ants in the middle of the manicured lawn. Clearly, the quaint place (is it set in the 1950s? It’s hard to tell) hides a layer of human cruelty, and as the mystery spreads, we meet gas-puffing Frank Booth (Dennis Hopper) and incarcerated lounge singer Dorothy Vallens (Isabella Rosselini). Among the suspenseful scenes from film noir are moments of surrealist comedy and inexplicable moments of terror. Yet for all the quirks, this is one of Lynch’s simpler projects. A good ramp up, or maybe the end of the road, depending on your taste.

Hannah and her sisters (1986)

Michele Caino And Diana Wiest both won Oscars in this vast masterpiece of interpersonal dynamics loosely based on Chekhov’s Three sisters. At its core there is Mia Farrow, in full shape as a caring wife, mother, daughter and sister trying to hold together a growing group of psychologically spiraling people. Furthest in orbit is her ex-husband, played by Woody Allen, which won another Oscar for its screenplay. This film, perhaps more than anything else he has done, has its legacy in a generation of comedies rooted in complex human interaction. Barbara Hershey, Carrie Fisher, Maureen O’Sullivan (Farrow’s mother) e Julie Kavner complete the incredible cast. Max Von Sydow’s monologue as a grumpy painter browsing the channels on television is perhaps the funniest scene of any 1980s comedy film.

Struck by the moon (1987)

By MGM / Everett Collection.

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