As any nostalgic 25 – 30 year old will tell you the mid-80s were a truly magical cinematic time for any kid to grow up in. In the wake of George Lucas? original Star Wars trilogy, we were bombarded with a cluster of imaginative, mystical live-action fantasy adventure films, which eagerly promoted a genuine sense of mischievous fun and adventure.
Tales of typically normal excitable youngsters going on epic adventures that lifted the heart stirred the soul and haunted our dreams. But it was the palpable sense of adventure that really convinced, giving us youngsters an achievable sense of daydream adventure – long before the internet or Xbox-claimed adolescent imagination.
Why the mid-80s? Give us another span of time where there was an equally audacious flux of films that dared to lift the lid on Pandora?s Box to capture our imagination and fiendishly tape into our most primal kiddie fears? So forget the CGI-bloated likes of Harry Potter, Golden Compass and the new Narnia adventures and let us divulge to you hecklerspray?s definitive Top 10 Cult Classic Fantasy Adventure Flicks from the Mid-80s…
1. The Goonies (1985)?????
How could you possibly compile an ultimate mid 80s film tribute list without including this cult classic from Superman helmer Richard Donner? It's the tale of a group of young suburbanites going on a (frankly ludicrous) adventure to thwart the council from demolishing their family homes by seeking hidden pirate treasure in booby-trapped underground lairs. But what makes it more believable is its incredibly gifted and likable young cast. Move over Harry Potter, these kids have charisma! With the likes of Mikey, Chunk, Mouth and Data on your team you won't need magical powers to accomplish a distinguishing characteristic. And yes that's No Country For Old Men?s Josh Brolin playing Mikey?s teenage brother! And who could forget The Fratellis? The archetypal kiddie movie bad guys, headed by super-bad ass (but sweet as pie in real life – if you believe the cast commentary) old trouper Anne Ramsey. And it's got Spielberg on executive producing duties and a great cheesy but catchy Cyndi Lauper music video to go with it ? what more could your young hearts ask for?
2. Return To Oz (1985)?????
We weren't really fans of the original Wizard of Oz movie but when Fairuza Balk came waltzing along with her talking chicken Billina and C3PO-type robot companion Tik-Tok we were overwhelmed by the results. And it was fucking scary too! What with those sinister, sub-Starlight Express Wheelers skirting around, those crumbling and gruesome claymation monsters and that hideous witch Mombi, with her eerie glass cabinet selection of limitless heads. No annoying musical numbers, no cowardly lion or clumsy scarecrow, (well not until later on anyway), just a gothic nightmarish adventure with startling baroque imagery in a mysterious, distant land where you will find ham sandwiches hanging on trees and an old man modelling red slippers.
3. Labyrinth (1986)
In our opinion Oscar-winner Jennifer Connelly was never better than when she played the feisty 15-year-old babysitter Sarah in Jim Henson?s spellbinding adventure. David Bowie camps it up as the glamorous Goblin King, along with a slew of Henson?s imaginative puppeteer creations ? and we don't mind those catchy dance numbers either.
4. Young Sherlock Holmes (1985)?
Anyone remember the haunting chanting of the Egyptian Rametep? The hallucinogenic stained-glass window knight that suddenly broke away from its frame to demonstrate the impressive power of early CGI? Or the opening shocker where a turkey dinner comes alive to attack its consumer? Well that's all from this cult special effects Oscar-nominated Sherlock Holmes prequel adventure ? which was subtitled (Indiana Jones style): The Pyramid of Fear. Dreamt up by early Harry Potter helmer Chris Columbus, (with Spielberg once again on producing duties), this was a notable highlight for the young cast of unknowns involved and proved a chilling sweeping and deadly adventure, a world away from the archetypal cosy Peter Cushing/Basil Rathbone movie outings.
5. Explorers (1985)?
Explorers was the warmhearted tale of a trio of kiddie science geeks who ? masterminded by computer whiz-kid River Phoenix, (debuting alongside a painfully young Ethan Hawke) – convert a junkyard carousel car into a floating capsule capable of travelling into outer space. Although looking more like a glorified wheelie bin than anything NASA would conceive the capsule is their gateway to adolescent freedom and they use it like any other teenage kids would use it: to travel the world, explore the universe and of course peep on girlies getting undressed.
6. The Lost Boys (1987)
?Sleep all day. Party all night. Never grow old. Never die. It's fun to be a vampire? went the encouraging tagline to this impressionable coming-of-age puberty flick (masking as a vampire movie). The Lost Boys is about two teenage brothers who rub shoulders with a leather-clad clan of blood thirsty vampires following their relocation to a new town in sunny California. A sequel is currently in the works, (welcome back Corey Feldman as Edgar Frog), but the original still holds up today as an irreplaceable nostalgic horror fantasy adventure? and Kiefer Sutherland is still the cool kid you wanna be when your strange.
7. Dark Crystal (1983)
Set in a dark and vast mystical world this is the penultimate moment when muppet maestros Jim Henson and Frank Oz ventured into the limitless realm of the feature film. It's a testament to the sheer power of suspension of disbelief that we willingly surrender our soles to a land populated entirely by puppet creations, ranging from the grotesque eagle-like entities of the feared Skekses to the almost sickly sweet Gelfings. It's not exactly ?live-action? but we like it.
8. Flight of the Navigator (1986)?????
This is the film that embraces the journey of a 12-year-old whizzkid who goes on a bombastic time-travelling adventure when he's abducted by an alien space-capsule, piloted by a robot that looks bizarrely like your dentist?s examination lamp. But it's a heck of a lot of fun even 20 years on! Hell, it's even got a young Sarah Jessica Parker in it as an annoyingly friendly (when hasn't she been annoying?) laboratory assistant.
9. Highlander (1986)
If you don't get too distracted by Christopher Lambert?s dodgy Scottish vocals, or the ridiculously complex plot, then Highlander is still a thrilling adventure yarn to rival Flash Gordon. And just like that said sci-fi film it's got a truly marvellous signature score by Queen. Fuck the sequels, reassert yourself with the masterly original.
10. Repo Man (1984)????
Alex Cox?s superb science fiction film stars a young Emilio Estevez as Otto: a punk rocker who becomes the ultimate car repossession professional after helping to steal a wanted vehicle. The twist in the tale is that there's some strange glowing object inside the boot of the car that's got the attention of government agents and UFO enthusiasts alike. With classy support from veteran character actor Harry Dean Stanton this was the film that put the ?punk? into punk rocker.
[story by Oliver Pfeiffer]?
I’ve never heard of any of these movies or the people associated with them.
Luckily for me, I spent the entire 80s stoned out of my head on pot.
monster munch says
nice list but where is Krull?
Where is ‘The Never Ending Story’?
How could you leave out The Princess Bride?
WTF?! Got to agree with Goonies but wheres Back To The Future??? an Iconic classic n all that malarky!
Oliver Pfeiffer says
These are supposed to be ‘cult’ classics remember not bona fide successes up there with the likes of E.T and Indiana Jones.
And I knew you would be screaming for Princess Bride, Never Ending Story etc but I was restricted to a top 10 so I had to limit myself a bit.
Any more additions are warmly welcome, but please don’t mention Legend, that was utter pants (with or without a girly Tom Cruise in it!)
Loved THE EXPLORERS. Nice pick.
How about TRON? Or THE LAST STARFIGHTER?
Also, not for kids, but when I was 14 I *loved* THE SWORD AND THE SORCERER.
Dude…. you misses one big one…… Willow
Legend! Where is Legend???
Charles Grrr says
You missed several great ones, like “Trancers”, “The Last Starfighter”, oh I can’t think of any more. But you missed these!
jarvis greeley says
Where’s Liquid Sky (1982)?
Other MAJOR classic that was missed….The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension. Excellent film 1984 – http://imdb.com/title/tt0086856/ Adventurer/surgeon/rock musician Buckaroo Banzai and his band of men, the Hong Kong Cavaliers, take on evil alien invaders from the 8th dimension.
Peter Weller John Lithgow Ellen Barkin Jeff Goldblum Christopher Lloyd
Andrew Tehdubya says
Fun list – good memories – what about Beastmaster? Red Sonja? Legend? Willow? I think you missed a lot of real good ones that failed to make Big Time status.
What about Tron or the Last Starfighter?
Or for the record any film that mentions Shermer High?
Yes, why weren’t these all just Krull, Krull, Krull, Krull, Krull, Krull, Barry Gordy’s The Last Dragon, and Krull?
Oliver, are you retarded? You omitted the Princess Bride and Never Ending Story because you thought those other movies were more popular, those two and the Goonies are more famous and classics than anything else on that list, The Princess bride has 22 times the votes of Return to Oz and is on the IMDB top 250, youve got to be fucking joking
I’m with the above:
WHERE THE HELL IS THE NEVER ENDING STORY!?!
what about “Time Bandits”???
Dave Bowker says
I agree with every one of these choices! What a spot on list.
Where is Legend? Where is Never-ending Story? Where is Princess Bride for god’s sake!?
also i 2nd Krull getting honorable mention on the list.
Explorers was IT for me.
no Willow, no credibility
Haven’t seen Return to Oz…how’d I miss that one?
What about Time Bandits?
Considering this list is missing Back to the Future, Neverending Story, and Bill & Ted, yet leaves in a bunch of other crap that could be left out it fails.
what about “time bandits”?
nice list, the explorers and return to oz are seriously good. i have to agree with the krull mention though… ladyhawk? maybe.
Open Bar says
The Neverending Story was definitely not a bona fide success, and clearly it fits the “cult classic” label. I love that you had Goonies at No. 1 (so would I), but I don’t see how Neverending Story got left out.
wtf. how did return to oz make this list. that movie was horrible. i knew that when i was 5. btw where is the never ending story? bastian!
Hey great list, maybe War Games( it was a bit adventurish) and yeah Princess Bride, Never Ending Story. They were great days alright.
Mad Mardigan says
where the hell is WILLOW?!!? The greatest swordsman who ever lived is NOT amused.
uh…no Time Bandits? Ridiculous.
You cant forget staying up late at night and watching ‘Up the Creek’.
Ruddiger Van Der Hoosen says
Cloak and Dagger! That was a classic! Or War Games!
where is beastmaster? conan the barbarian? tron? night of the comet? dragonmaster? excaliber? dragonslayer?
your list is weak.
No Mazes and Monsters? Fail!
How could you forget “The Last Starfighter”?!?
Legend? Back to the Future? Princess Bride? Another “Top Ten” list that is probably just the first 10 items the author could think of.
No C.H.O.M.P.S or Hawk the Slayer?
Mr. Fu says
Where is Buckaroo Banzai?????
Brad Hart says
I am glad to say I own most of those on DVD. I just blogged about the upcoming sequels to a couple of 80’s movies on my site, The Lost Boys 2 : The Tribe which is going direct to DVD. The Last Starfighter is also getting a sequel, but I haven’t heard much buzz about it yet.
Better yet.. What about.. ” The Never Ending Story” !!!
every good Repo man does Speed son. . .
Harry Dean Stanton at his best
How can a 80’s fantasy list be missing these??
The Adventures of Baron Munchausen
Harry and the Hendersons
Little Shop of Horrors
Toxic Avenger (too cheesy?)
Finally, Willow. Where the hell is Willow?
And I enjoyed the heck out of Star Wars- Battle for Endor
why only limit this to 25-30 year old, I’m 33 and I remember all of these…
The Never Ending Story ? back to the future ? The Adventures of Baron Munchausen ? you miss very good ones
dude, buckaroo banzai
war of the worlds part 2, starring the fly, third rock, robocop, rev jim, mr vargas …. i mean c’mon
Michael James says
THE ADVENTURES OF BUCKAROO BANZAI?? Hello??
What about “Monster Squad”? That movie kicked ass. “Wolfman’s got nards!”
Okay, I see your point about “bona fide”. How bout this then.
Krull (so had to make this list, easily should have won over Sherlock), Ice Pirates, Time Bandits, Monster Squad, Clash of the Titans (70’s-esque but an ’81 movie), GI Joe: The Movie, Howard the Duck, Masters of the Universe, Condorman (good god this movie was the best), Last Starfighter, Buckaroo Banzai (my god, man!), Adventures of Baron Munchausen, D.A.R.Y.L.
Man there are so many more. But good god man! No Buckaroo?
How can you leave of The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension?
This is the ULTIMATE cult classic of the 80’s :(
It should also be noted that the UFO’s voice is different in this trailer for Flight of the Navigator.
A nice oversight is War Games, Talk about a classic!
ok so its just at the end of the 80’s…but what about Little Monsters?
alba fan says
Laborinth was one of my favorite movies as a child. Where is the Neverending Story?
alba fan says
Neverending Story was a great one… where is it!?!?!
What about Rocketeer? Jennifer Connely at her most wonderful. :-)
How about “Froggy Dreaming(a.k.a. The Quest)”, “Cloak and Dagger”, or “flight of the Navigator” All of which I believe stared the kid from ET.
I used to be into Mid-80’s Fantasy Adventure Flicks when I was a homeless rodeo clown but not anymore. Now I am a world class magician !
Umm.. The Repo Man is no fantasy adventure flick. It is a great film from the 80’s, but definitely doesn’t belong in the list.
What about that movie called “My Science Project” about this school kid that finds a energy core from a UFO and it gets misused or something and then it creates a portal in the high school and these dinosaurs come out…..it was super cool.
Dune. Kyle MacLachlan & Patrick Stewart. ’nuff said
I'm 31 says
Short Circuit and Cocoon….dummies.
K00L D00d says
What about Leonard Part 6? That was the best 80’s movie. Maybe best movie ever. Period!
What about “Batteries not included” ?
Snerdly Varquist says
And where o where is the Greatest movie of all time (drum roll)…..
Big Trouble in lLttle China?
Have you never actually seen any non-mainstream films?
Howard the Duck!!!! that was a classic!
Chris Laverty says
Who said *batteries not included?! In the kennel for you, sir! Right now.
beetlejuice def should’ve been on there but also i havent seen anyone mention LITTLE MONSTERS.. def an 80’s classic
Most def. needs The Neverending Story!
You eat alot of acid, Miller? Back in the hippie days?
Tom Rzepecki says
How about The Neverending Story?!?!
Better movie than all of the above put together!
what about lord of the rings??? paaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaalease
That trailer for the goonies is terrible. Especially as it was and still is a brilliant film.
Where is Jack F’ing Burton!!!!!
And His twin Snake Pliskin?!!
Highlander? Young Sherlock Holmes? GTFO.
The rest of the list is spot on, but missing The Neverending Story.
OKAY list, in general… but as mentioned earlier, to have a Mid-80’s Fantasy Adventrue list not include NeverEnding Story, Buckaroo Bonzai, Time Bandits, Highlander, BladeRunner, or Willow is simply wrong…
not to mention that paul reubens is the voice of the ship in flight of the navigator.
nothing like a ship that sounds like pee wee herman.
But what people really want to know is, where is the torrent pack of the movies? ;)
Only a fool would leave out: (in addition to the films already mentioned)
and dont frickn forget about Enemy Mine….
Ahh damn missed adding
Hey everybody, I’d like to take this opportunity to mention all these terrible movies that probably everyone saw, and no one liked. In addition, I will refuse to read any of the previous suggestions in an attempt to maximize duplication.
I will then proceed to criticize your list for its omissions, as well as calling into question your intelligence, hygiene, and parentage, my post liberally sprinkled with nearly unrecognizable typos, AOL-style acronyms, and endless self-promotion.
Salute of the jugger
Juggers are comin’
CULT classics. CULT. As in, not mainstream, not $100 Million blockbusters, not huge in the theatres, possibly even flops in the theatres. But found a CULT following, through VHS/DVD, secondary releases, whatever, and somehow became more than what they were originally.
And as the guy said, he limited himself to 10, and when you do that, you are going to pare it down to your personal faves.
These just happen to be his faves, and I agree with a lot of the list, and makes me want to rewatch some of these that I do own.
Rocky Horror Picture Show!!!
WTF, where’s Legend?
Gotta add BLADE RUNNER to the list!
Glad to see so many Krull addicts out there, it’s my all-time most-watched movie… as of this writing, I have so far watched it 135 times, can recite the entire dialogue by heart, and hum the entire fantastic soundtrack by James Horner; his Magnum Opus.
The best bit is the back-and-forth between Lyssa and the Beast:
“You have chosen a paltry kingdom on an insignificant planet!”
“Love is fleeting. Power is eternal.” (My favourite movie line! :)
Every one of these cheesy old movies, both the ones in your list and all the ones in the comments, I remember fondly from my younger days. Some uber-geek mentioned Hawk The Slayer (a TRUE cheese classic!) but I’ll go you one better for pure cheddar: remember Star Crash? Yes, the ultra-cheap Star-Wars ripoff featuring Christopher Plummer, with MUCH better female costuming than the prudish Star Wars, tacky lines, spray-painted Airfix-model spaceships, Christmas-tree-light stars, the works!
Hey I wonder if anyone could help me. I’ve been racking my brain trying to remember the title of this movie. ALL I CAN REMEMBER (when I watched it as a child) were lizard/dinosaurs attacking a city made of stone, and hundreds of people throwing rock boulders off the top at the ‘beasts’ that were climbing up the walls of the city. It was an old movie in the same vein as Jason and Argonauts etc. stop motion etc. if anyone knows the title please tell me as its driving me crazy.
Miss Natalie says
sorry just a question if anyone can help im trying to find out a family fantasy movie’s name. their was a brother and sister in it the find a midget who has special powers he brings them back to his plant they have to help him do something, the people on his plant are mystical and magical some are dressed in white and doing circus acrobatics if anyone can help i know its not a lot to go on but if yo could i thank u so much
Geebees For My DeeBee says
Killer Klowns From Outer Space
whats that 80’s movie ”Nouki” or something? it was about these two little aliens. i cant remember the name! argh… Nooki … Noukki… Nuki…. argh, its not on IMDB
ok i am glad to see someone gave mention to masters of the universe heman was great for my brothers and i to play growing up and i am sad to see no one gave mention to EXCALIBER one of the greatest king arthur stories there was but everybody pretty much covered the best movies in the 80s but u know i also gotta give mention to Conan u gotta give it up to conan remember the cartoon on tv my brother and i used to play that all the time and there were quite a few japan anime like one of my all time faves Vampire Hunter D and then there was Ninja Scroll but u know i tell people all the time and always complain that they dont make good movies like back then and u cant forget the Ninja Turtles and im surprised i didnt see too many people give the hobbit propsbut im glad to see labyrinth made it on there and remember the Ewok movies ive been looking for those everywhere
theres several movies and i love just sitting and talking about movies im a movie buff movies and fantasy world was our lif growing up im glad to see other people around my age bringing me back to the day man those were the days no worries only how i was gonna kill the bad guy tomorrow or if we were gonna be robots flying in space or fighters and wizards on a quest
What about Back to the Future and Ghostbusters?????!!!!!!! How on earth can you miss these two fantastic movies???
I would agree that at least half of the entries (“Labyrinth,” “The Lost Boys,” “The Dark Crystal,” “Highlander,” and “Repo Man”) are cult classics on some level, and a few others are still worth a look after all these years (I’ve just added “Return to Oz” to my Netflix queue), but I would have removed “The Goonies” from the list altogether and replaced it with “The Princess Bride.” I know quite a few are fond of “The Goonies,” but I find it incredibly annoying. Very similar to having a bunch of kids constantly bugging you all at once . . . I just want them to go away!
Cant Forget Caravan Of Courage or The Battle For Endor, loved them.
Where is Karate Kid and Big foot !!!!!!?????
Adventures in Baby Sitting was fairly 80’s and fantasy, I don’t know that it was classic at all, but reading these post made me think of it, but for me it was Blade Runner. 82 is almost mid 80’s, yeah?
does ANYONE know the movie where the princess is captured in a castle that is shaped like a hand???? This is killing me!!! The guy that goes to save her winds up at some witch’s lair and she’s all young and pretty and has an hourglass and a mirror or something. and there’s cobwebs all over her lair… I need to know what this movie is, I can’t find it anywhere!!!!!!!!!! anyone!!!
I already own Return to Oz, Labrinth, The Dark Crystal. I’ve seen most of tyour list.
You really should have added The Brincess Bride (I know that one by heart) Willow, The Neverending Story.
Frankly a cult classic list should be made from the best “cult Films” not just ones YOU like.
oh and Sam that movie is The neverending story…and its been mentioned already quite a bit.
Ferris Bueller and the Hobbit
YES!! Time Bandits! Thank you, I have been trying to remember the name of that movie for over a year! One of my favorites. Great list overall, except I never felt quite the same way about Goonies as other people seemed to.
Okay, so I can’t remember this movie to save my life. It starts out in the 80’s everyday life and then somehow gets to this mystical land with a white horse named Merimous(?) and a boy who saves an old town. Anything ring a bell? I can’t figure it out.
But Labyrinth, The Neverending Story, Willow, Legend, Ewoks… those are all great 80’s movies.
Okay, some of these i can agree with but some, eh.. Especially for a top 10 list of Cult Classics? Dude seriously, The Repo Man? Your list has a few key movies on it like The Lost Boys & Labyrinth, but you’re merely skimming the surface here with your PG list. Bladerunner, The Road Warrior, The Shining, Time Bandits, Fly, not to mention some of the greatest cinematic classics & most watched movies ever: The Empire Strikes Back & Return of the Jedi. As far as anime goes, I agree with you Ozzy_420 Ninja Scroll & Vampire Hunter D are certainly on my shelf but not released until the 90’s but Akira should no doubt be on any Top 10 list. Other greats but hard finds are Heathers, The Legend of Billie Jean & Gift w/ Perry Farrell & girlfriend Casey (not for the faint-hearted) but genious film.. Could go on forever but I’ll end my rant now………
Are you referring to Brothers Grimm?
I know there’s a new one out, and this is from the 70s and all but Last House On The Left.
Thank you anyway for the list. Finally I know the name of the movie I want to watch again, Labyrinth. Since I was too young when watched this movie, I fail for searching it.
Many Thanks ;-)
It’s been a long time, but that sounds like never ending story to me, maybe part two if not the first one?
It’s called Kull….And should be on this list….It’s AWESOME…Definitely check it out if you haven’t seen it.
sorry, meant Krull
Ugh. Repo Man.
Does anyone remember a movie that had a teenage kid trying to save a princess from a dark evil guy? There is a big white puffball chewbacca rip off who is friends with a sword fighter or something. Also I remember a part where the teenage kid is put under some sort of spell. He thinks he is with a women but it is actually a huge spider that someone stabbs alot which makes green slime come out.
The movie you are thinking of is Krull…great movie as far as 80’s fantasy goes…hope you come back to see this.
I myself can’t remember a movie made in the 80’s…it was a dark fantasy that had a scene where the hero is crucified at the end of a dinner table…and all the lords of the realm are feasting around oblivious to his suffering. He eventually pulls out the nails binding him to the cross and fights his way out…saving the girl as well….it was a long time ago I saw this and it may not be completely as I said it…but if anyone has an inkling as to what this movie was I’d appreciate it. ^_^
hey does ANYONE remember an adventure movie where there is a man leading a group of teenage kids from danger. i believe the man uses a hawk for guidence, and in one scenario, the kids were being chased, they had Rollerblades on, then finally they had to rollerblade fast enough to jump a ledge to cross over. they helped each other doing this, then they found themselves on a hill, and then got in some really big Car Tires, then they rolled down the hill! lol movie probably came out somewhere in the late 80’s or early 90’s. this movie has been on mind for years! please help!
The movie is SolarBabies M8 hope that helps you out
ummm….I think you forgot one. HEAVY METAL!
wow… a.d.d. much? remember, punctuation is your friend…
The reason some of the more popular films mentioned aren
the movie your thinking about is warlords of atlantis, good monster movies.
the movie u want is krull
Wizards of the Lost Kingdom
…Ok this is an eighties movie…I remember like a dude in black with a skull mask.. It was a midevil type movie with other creatures ..like a lord of the rings movie…not krull I just watched krull not it…I think it starts with G…maybe…its killing me..and they came out with action figures..not heman either..but lot likeit….HELP ME…
Ahem i know they are animated but Fire&Ice and Starchaser awsome movies OMG!!!!!!!!!!!!
I think it might be Willow, because I know that there’s this dude in a skull mask called General Kael. Glad to be of help!
Good choices, but this is my list. (10-1).
10. Labyrinth-Not as good as the Dark Crystal, but acceptable.
9. Willow- I love Madmartigan and how they used real short people rather than computer animation to make the people look short(they did that in LOTR for the hobbits).
8. Return to Oz- More creepy and dark, but unigue and imaginative in its own special way. I didn’t really like the songs in the first, and that cackling witch’s high pitched, sqeaky voice gave me a headache.
7. Dragonslayer- I can’t recall if this was made in the 80s, but the fire-breathing special effects were spectacular.
6. Castle in the Sky- Anime is kinda annoying. I mean, no offence, but the characters look a little cheesy and fake. Castle in the Sky was detiled and creative, and I soon found myself absorbed in the movie.
5. All Dogs Go To Heaven- Humorous, touching, and beautiful animation. A real treat!
4. The Princess Bride- This movie is sooo funny! A pure classic. If you haven’t seen it, see it. Don’t fall for the trailer, it was horrible!
3. The Secret of Nimh- A great film. A little dark and violent for a G movie, but it was still great. Don Bluth is the master of animation!
2. Legend- This movie has it all. Unicorns, a devil-like monster, daring deeds, danger, action, love, and courage. A triumph.
3. The Dark Crystal- my absolute favorite movie! Creative and beautiful, this is the most wonderous fantasy ever imagioned!
My list isn’t all 80’s but it’s all Cult or all Classic. For the anime crowd, good call on Ninja Scroll & Vampire hunter D, but let’s not forget Fist of the North Star, Ghost in the Shell, Bio Hunters, and of course the one that kicked it off for the main stream crowd, Heavy Metal and dare I say The Last Unicorn? Anyone who’s interested in a little known great cult film with some big names try Rosencrants and Guildenstern are Dead, also try Crash (with James Spader). In my list also is Primer, Serries 7: The Contenders (a mock reality show where average citizens are chosen in a lottery to murder one another), Battlefield Earth was Highly underrated! Also, we have SLC Punk, A Clockwork Orange, Waydowntown (movie about a group of people who can move from home to work without ever stepping otuside, due to the large metropolis in which they live, and a bet to see who can go the longest without ever stepping otuside, pretty good stuff). Notable Mentions: 25th Hour, Serial Experiments: LAIN, Last House on the Left (the original – Wes Craven’s First Film, not the crappy remake), “American History X” hit a nerve, didn’t it? Man there are too many to list. I didn’t bother relisting the ones I saw previously, so I don’t htink there are any repeats, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t as good. If you like some of the movies I listed and havn’t seen some others then you’ll know I have good taste and you can take a chance.
I had been searching for a movie that I used to watch when I was a kid (which wasn’t too long ago to be honest; im 17) and one of you mentioned it here. I’m so happy now! honestly this page made my day! A lot of these I have watched but others i haven’t.For sure i Have to check them out now.
The best thing about these films (meaning only the ones for kids) is that they still retain that real mystery and darkness. Not too cheesy and not censored like everything is now.
Which movie was it that you used to watch and was listed?
yes Willow sounds likely.
Holy Crap, the Legend of Billie-Jean! LOL FAIR IS FAIR! That movie was so cool then and is so gay now. Instant classic for the nostalgic types.
It was Legend. Samantha mentioned it.
Everyone should see Mirrormask.
Hey, good lists, I’m compiling one right now on rottentomatoes. I have all of these except Wizards of the Lost Kingdom, good call. I am also trying to figure out one I can’t remember. I believe it’s from the 80’s… has a hero gathering a team of fighters (medieval era) one is a lumberjack guy w/ an axe. There is a wizard helping him that has these glowing rings that spin on each other like hula-hoops… and a black-haired, pointy-eared elf that is really good with a bow. Thats all I can remember. My tag at RT is Handsome Drew if anyone wants to see my sci-fi/fantasy list, or my 80’s list.
One little 80’s gem I’ll mention here for ya… Spacehunter: Adventures in the Forbidden Zone (w/ a young Molly Ringwald)1983
Looking for a movie I saw as a child. All I can remember is a little girl going through the mirror of her room and ending up in a fantasy world. She try’s to steal what I believe is magic strawberries from a tree that will keep her mother young. There is a witch who wants to keep them for herself and I think puppets that help her. However upon returning home through the mirror she drops them and they disappear. Can anyone help me?
Hi everyone, I also am trying to remember a eighty-ish horror/fantasy film I saw as kid. I thought it was Legend but recently watched it and realized it’s not the one I’m thinking of. The only scene I remember is a woman being held captive by an evil bad guy/demon/monster (not sure). The woman was wearing a black full, skin tight body suit which had various holes exposing her skin through out the garment. Wish I could remember more but that’s it. I’m hoping this weak description will jog someones memory. Any ideas, thoughts, or suggestions would be much appreciated. Thanks
You guy’s did a good job helping me remember quite a few movies.The one You really helped me with was Solarbabies,I kept thinking it was rollerbabies and could never find it thanks.One I remember not mentioned,that I watched as a kid is (The Garbage Pail Kids) -1987
I think I am looking for the same movie that Drew asked about. Did it centre on two female characters and two male characters on horseback? It had some love scenes and the movie began and ended with a marquee on a beach…
You might be talking about the Hugga Bunch movie (1985).
Omega Doom, Fist of the North Star
I’m trying to remember a old 80’s or 90’s movie.. i think it was by Stephen King, but all I remember is these 2 fat monster guys and a Woman i think and there in a field and they go underground in somewhere… and the next part i remember is there in the desert and the 2 monsters try blood for the first time by the Woman. . .
but theirs a group of other people there that are trying to escape or something. . help plz XD appreciate it xD
old movie. . . i think its by stephen king im entirely sure
but the only 2 parts i remember about the Film is
theres these 2 giant monster things walk really slowly and a woman
and they go underground somewhere in some sort of lair maybe
and the other part is the 2 monsters and woman are in the desert and the woman gives the monster the taste of blood of the 1st time
and theres actualy a group of other ppl in the same place that are trying to escape or somthing
anyone no this movie ?! thx XD
Can someone help me find this movie!? I think it is probably from the late 80’s-90’s. It had like two kids and I think they went back in time or something. But all I remember is that there was this huge bird/penguin thing and it was trying to attack them. Help! Thanks!
I figured out the one I was thinking of. It was “Hawk the Slayer” w/ Jack Palance and man is it cheeeese.
The one l7cx1Cl is looking for isn’t a Stephen King flick. Without more info the movies that come to mind are the original “Time Machine”, “Rawhead Rex”, the original “The Hills Have Eyes”, or possibly even “Nothing but Trouble” with Dan Aykroyd playing a disgusting pair of fat siamese twins.
Ladyhawk perhaps…there isn’t a group of kids, but that’s also a good movie ^_^
Hey I’m trying to remember a movie from either late 70s or 80s. It’s pretty vague what I remember. It’s set in the time period that the movie was made. But it’s about a boy in a school where they are learning magic or can create magic potions. I think he gets picked on at school. It’s bugging the crap out of me, but that’s all I can remember.
Can anyone help me? i am looking for a movie that is either 80’s or early 90’s. Its about a girl thats in high school who isnt part of the popular crowd but she likes this boy who is in that crowd and she meets this old woman who casts a spell for the boy to like the girl. Does anybody know this movie?
Bri: Your movie sounds like “Teen Witch” from 1989.
Jennifer: …without more info yours sounds either like: The Never Ending Story, Wizards of the Lost Kingdom, or The Pagemaster, and of course the obvious, Harry Potter.
Hey peeps, lovin this thread, i am looking for the name of this movie but all i remember of it is a kid and there’s this big old creepy crane in a junk yard and it moves and makes some noise and freaks the kid out…Not much info i know..
the movie is called ‘the great land of small’ it’s intended for kids but all it does is scare the crap out of people…
aand that would be ‘krull’ i should work for this website…
ok my turn, it’s an 80’s movie, theres a castle and a gate that may have crashed down on a soldier…and a gross goblin guy that is the kings advisor but he turns out to be evil. theres a scene where an attractive castle maid (with 80’s hair) makes out with the goblin guy! =/ thats all i remember, i’ve been trying to track down this movie since i was like 6 with no luck.
This has been BUGGING me, but I can’t seem to figure out the name of this movie, from the late 80’s/early 90’s, a teenager from “our” world somehow goes over to a medieval area where he teams up with a bunch of “fighters” (there’s a midget with an ax possibly? And a sexy lady with a sword possibly??) and he’s able to come back to our world when using a keyboard to play some sorta tune. Or maybe the medieval fighters are stuck in our world and he finally gets them back to their world playing a keyboard?? There’s a keyboard and world jumping. And the sexy lady fighter is disgusted with the concept of eating fried chicken (with bones!) from our world. Any help would be appreciated! I watched this movie before I knew how to speak English. :)
Joanna – Sounds like He-Man and the Masters of the Universe live action movie. Starred Dolph Lundren and had a midget with a portal creating keyboard thingy.
cant remember the name of this movie it has this star looking thing that has blades that pop out and it comes back to the guy who throws it and it has horses that have flames coming from their feet
… help, this was 80s – a kid with something like video cartridge that some enemy want and his game hero came out of the game, in the end it’s like his father was the one save him? It’s kinda cheesy but fun, but can’t remember it’s been so long…
I’m pretty sure it was called Cloak and Dagger, I liked that movie too
hey rich, thats obviously “krull” everyone has seen that! http://dailypop.wordpress.com/2009/08/23/krull-1983/
marc thomas says
great list but.. i’m sorry, where is the neverending story?
emm.. you don’t have legend here? it’s gotta be top 5 :s
where is The adventures of Baron Munchausen, that was good with Robin williams and Uma Thurman
WILLOW!!! Dont forget Willow!! awesome movie!
Do you know the movie where a girl gets old really fast and looks for her brother (with some friends she made)and they travel thru a world map?
if you know so much please please please tell me what movie i’m thinking of because i’m going crazy!! all i can remember is it’s an older, possibly 80’s or early 90’s live action movie with a witch or evil queen who keeps red glowing balls in a glass jar. it has cheesy characters like power rangers or i thought maybe a live rainbow brite. every time i eat cherry tomatoes i think of those red balls of light but can’t place the movie please help!!!!!!
ha! i found my movie it’s the hugga bunch movie!!! i can rest easy now. that was killing meeeeeeee!!
Kate McEvoy says
Hey, my husband and I were watching bedknobs and broomsticks with our two daughters and he started talking about a film he saw when we were younger, but of course he can’t remember the name of it!! He says he remembers an older guy with blonde hair playing a Chinese guy, quite a popular actor maybe? And Chinese people driving a truck with a tryannosaurus Rex skeleton on the back being chased by a dragon. If doesn’t sound familiar to me, but if anyone knows what it is it’d be great to find out!! Thanks, k8.
hi, im looking 80s kind of midevil. I just remeber a few things. the main actor kind of looks like macgyver. him and these other guys were put in this manhunt last man standing wins. there was a big guy cheating and fighting him throughout the manhunt. there were referees along the way, kind of like ninja refs. also there was a village of loonies they have to fight as well.
Great list. What always sticks out to me as funny about 80s cult classics is how so many of them were marketed as kid’s movies, but were actually really dark. Labyrinth is a good example; so is the Goonies and Neverending Story. I think that might be why they’re still so popular, the kids who watched them before they grew up can look back now and say “they don’t make ’em like they used to.”
The Film i think your talking about is Krull
Okay I am looking for a older movie. I remember a guy is in love with a girl and she has a ring. She throws it in the river he jumps after it and when he finds it surfaces. He find the girl is missing. I think was taken by a demond. I remember her dancing around in a black outfit. She spinning and dancing I believe she ends up dancing with the devil or some monster. I also believe ther are unicorns in this movie can anyone help
Some of that almost sounds like Legend (Tom Cruise and Mia Sara) but dont remember the dancing in it though, has been a long time since I’ve seen it.
Yeah it was Legend. The “dance” scene is symbolic of her ‘dancing with her dark side.’ Tim curry is flipping awesome in that part.
I’m trying to remember a film I watched when I was a kid probably late 80s or early 90s. There was a group of 4 teenagers working in a store(possibly a hardware store) in america they are driving home in the dark and something happens and they end up in another land I remember it being like a fairytale land at one point they are held in a cell underground and at the end someone gets married. I also remember there being a factory where they make cookies or sweets and I think the film was usually on at christmas. Please help does anyone remember it??
that sounds like Babes in Toyland (1986) with Drew Brrymore, Keanu Reeves
I am trying to find the name of this movie I watched as a kid I remember it was about this high school boy who finds like this laser gun in the river then he starts killing people with it but he was like a loner and he thinks it’s from aliens but it’s from the military
his name is zeke I think it might be called the star gazer but not sure from late 80s to early 90s
PLEASE HELP…. been looking for this classic movie about a group of travelers that go on these crazy adventures, one scene portrays the story of 6 able men where they carry out all the gold one man can carry that they tricked out of the king. or sultan. the characters all had special abilities and they went to many distant places and lands i believe. thanks…
You might be thinking of The Adventures of Baron Munchausen
Im trying to find a movie that I watched on accident when I was a kid and my parents were pissed about it. I dont remember much but theres a kid/guy hanging out and his dog comes into the garage or house and he isnt paying attention but his dog starts to morph into something alien like. Thats really all i remember. TY to who ever can help me find it.
I’m trying to find a movie I watched as a kid but I don’t know much about it, although I do remember one scene in it where a floating sphere follows some young adults/children around as they caused havoc, I remember a scene where one of the persons involved escaped an explosion by getting into the inner of a tyre, rolling down a hill to safety…. Any ideas?
i think the movie your talking about is lazerblast sounds like what your describing its and 80s movie
I’m looing for a movie but all I remember is a a monster that wraps its wings around someone and when he opens them all that is left are the bones.
The movie you want is called Beast Master
I’m searching for a movie that would come on in the late 80’s early 90’s. Don’t know much about it but I remember in one scene there are these people the are tiny and some kids (two boys) are messing with them. I think the kids had special powers or something like they were gods. at the end of the scene one of the kids hits the people with a hammer I think and they are teleported somewhere. idk
Moonbabies, it’s on Netflix.
I have memories of a movie that would have come out during the 80’s, or was a pretty vivid dream… I remember that a girl walks through a mirror but gets trapped on the other side. Somehow the key to her escape had something to do with glowing cherry tomato-looking objects in a glass case. Sound familiar to anyone?
I have been thinking about a movie I watched as a kid around 1984/85 that terrified me. The only thing I remember is a pyramid, a jungle an evil eye perhaps within the pyramid :\ I would love to find that movie…any idea’s?
Si Sharp says
that certainly describes a scene in The Thing (1982). Your parents certainly would have been pissed. Not sure about a ‘guy hanging out’ though so I might be wrong
Hi All. I’m searching for a movie that I watched in the late 80s. It’s about a boy who I think was in his early teens and may have been named John B B John who befriends a devil and they get into mischief. I don’t remember anything else, except for the song that they sang throughout the movie:
We’ll have lots of fun, John B B John
Two friends make a team
For devils, a scream!
Does this sound familiar to anyone?
A movie that was more of an action movie where an alien or presence would take over someone and that someone would pretty much go on a killing spree. All I remember is a bombshell of a woman who would seduce some unlucky fellow and kill him and the only way to stop it was to kill the alien or thing while it was out of the body in transit to the other.
I’m trying to remember a movie from when I was a kid. All I can remember is a small clamation goblin that multiplies and an old house that was falling apart and they end up using model rockets to defete a monster! Please help, its driving me nuts!
Si Sharp says
This sounds like The Hidden, a VHS classic starring Kyle McLachlan!
Hay Guy’s Okay theres a movie i remember ALWAY’S watching as a little kid and im trying to find out what it’s called, the only thing i remember is the main charecter was a young girl …POSSABLY a boy but im remembering a girl in my head LOL AND there was a scene where she’s walking through a mystical forest or swamp and some creater’s are by her side helping her through the movie and there’s a talking door and lott’s of wierd Cool mystical thing’s….sorry that was probz NO help at all …help if you can though thank you. and i know it’s not (labrynth)
The movie is called “The Gate.”
Right, I hope somebody could help me. I don’t know alot about this movie. I remember seeing it when I was really young, but only a brief clip. It looked like a sci-fi/fantasy drama. It was about two teenager children, a boy and a girl, meeting each other, and then they find out that they are connected in a spiritual/cosmic way, like they are twins or something, or they realise that they have the same powers. It seemed like it was an 80s/90s film. And it wasn’t an animation, it had real life actors in it. And there was a bit I distinctly remember, where the boy and the girl do some strange magic in front of each other, and they realise they are the same or something like that … I have no idea what it’s called. If this sounds familiar to any of you, please let me know. Thanks. :)
I have 2 movies that I need help figuring out their titles. For the first movie, the only scene I can remember is of a young girl walking and she has extremely long hair. While she’s walking, her hair gets caught in a bush and she somehow ends up underground where there are a bunch of young children put to work.
The next movie is of a rich teenager who loses her ability to talk. Somehow her family forgets about her and she even becomes their maid. Any help would be greatly appreciated!!
I figured out the second movie, ‘maid to order,’ but still need help figuring out the first movie.
Im trying to remember this movie i saw in the 80’s maybe early 90’s when there is this sick kid or something who makes a trip to california and to some arcade place with 3d glasses and everythings real trippy and colourful looking i think they might be in a game maybe. Someone please help me thats all i can rememeber since i did watch it when i was like 10. Think the movie had CALIFORNIA in the title
I’m trying to remember a movie that came on either in the 80s or 90s… All I remember about is is this little girl riding in a car really disliking her older sister. Then she ends up in this fantasy land and her sister is this princess who’s being forced or tricked into marrying this evil man. And he’s trying to turn the younger sister and the things helping her into these mindless troll like things. But the girl saves her sister in the end and wakes up to realize it was just a dream.
I try to find out the name of an 80’s or possibly early 90′ sc-fi film. The only thing I can remember that aliens secretly landed on Earth and this one kid (12-14 years old) got susspicious about her school teacher. One day , he happended to walk into class and found her swallowing a frog, which was half way sticking out of her month and I used to find revolting. Then later on, I think he had to save some of his friends and had to look for and find the spaceship, which was under ground. Hopefully, someone can remember what this film was called, because I would really like to see it again. Thanks
Possibly “invaders from Mars”? Kinda sounds like it.
There were that many weird, trippy movies in the 80s, which absolutely no kid ever should have seen but somehow loads of us did, that what you describe could probably have been in any of them! But if it involves going through a mirror, your first port of call would probably be any of the many, many adaptations of Alice in Wonderland / Alice Through the Looking Glass. Be very wary if you happen across the Jan Svankmajer version, though – it’s a deeply disturbing hallucinatory nightmare. The guy was once part of a disastrous Soviet experiment on LSD and, oh boy, does it ever show in the films he made afterwards.
I’m trying to remeber the name of a sci-fi movie i watched as a kid in the 80’s. It was set in the future and there were these evil cyborgs using their ships to build this large structure in space, that once completed was a weapon and the kids had to stop them before they finished it. In the end they managed to seperate one of the cyborgs from the group and befriend him and use him to save the day.
Been baking my noodle for years now, i cant remember what it was called.
remember watching 2 films in late 80s think it was japanese or something it had tiny little robots in it and the sequel had bigger budget!! thought jackie chan was in it but can’t find any info bout it. the name of it has driven me potty 4 years:(
think the main characters were cops or special agents?? hope someone can help
Eiither that, or Alien 3.
If it involved puppets, it sounds like the Hugga Bunch movie. :)
The movie is called The Wizard.
I’m trying to find the name of a movie in the 80s that has something to do with spies, a kid, his dad who is an airplane pilot I think, and there is a bomb in the movie I think as well.
When I was a kid we watched this movie about a family that crashed with some kind of spaceship. They crashed in some Forrest or something and I remember there were little bear like creatures and a fast rabbit like creature.
Can someone tell me the name of this movie?
I remember this old movie ably a family that crashes with some sort of spaceship in a Forrest. In that movie there are these little gentle bear like creatures that are really cute and there I’d this fast rabbit in it as well. I can’t remember much more. Can someone help me?
Battle For Endor. It was a Star Wars spin-off Ewok film.
Like everyone else, I’m trying to remember a movie from the 80’s. I don’t remember a whole lot, but there was a teenager who had been struck by lightning a bunch of times through out his life (like 15+?) and it turns out that he’s an alien but doesn’t realize it, I think? And he has some sort of information locked away in his brain but the only way to remember it is through sexual arousal? There was no nudity, it was a movie for kids (I think), and it is *definitely* not Powder.
it’s cloak and dagger. i loved that movie.
sounds like babes in toyland
Was there a scene where a computer had broken on the kid? Possibly in a cave? I’ve been looking for a movie that sounds like what you described. Haven’t seen it since the mid-80s.
Return to Witch Mountain?
Deadly Weapon (1989) – http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0097171/
Sounds like Congo to me.
Hi everyone. A fantasy adventure film(probably late 70s or 80s) has been haunting me and i have goggled to now avail. all i remember was an island, a giant turtle that was used as a submarine type ship(but it was luxurious inside) 1000 leagues, island of dr monrue and treasure island are not what i am looking for
I am trying to find a movie I watched when I was really small, early 80s. It came in a VHS box that was either holographic or pressed foil in lots of colors. It involved some kids that get lost and end up in a fantasy world with a scene with loads of people dressed as flying peacocks and circus like costumes in a dreamy sequence at the end the are in a boat going down a river and their parents find them on a river bank in the pouring rain.
I would really like to know where can these retro cult mid 80’s movie can be seen,am hoping there’s a web site where it could be found an seen can any body help me please!
Man your dumb!!
I was so glad to see someone mention Toxic Avenger. That was so hilarious. Alot of the movies you mentioned I have had my kids watch. I did notice no Labrynth on here either. Or Dune? Flash Gordon? There are some serious movies off this list. I love 80’s movies.
Just thought of another movie. Big trouble in little china with Kurt Russell. Awsome movie with a great plot! One of the bad guys is raiden from mortal kombat.
Silence Gir! You annoy me!
I can’t believe no one added Dragonslayer 1981.
The Warrior and the Sorceress 1984. Can someone upload this movie, I can’t find it anywhere to watch on the internet for free.
You may be talking about “Teen Witch”