The Best 80's Horror Movies part 2

in #movies3 years ago

The Best 80's Horror Movies part 2

So here is part two of the best 80's horror movies. I could probably debate the order of these all night, but here is 11-20 in the best 80's horror movies, as picked by me.
Part one:

11) They Live (1988)

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They Live is awesome, it really could have been in my top 10. Wrestling star Roddy Piper actually does a pretty good job as John Nada, a hardworking guy who gets caught in unemployment due to a bad economy and starts drifting across the USA looking for work. Encountering lots of prejudice against the poor he gets a job in construction and settles into a homeless camp in 80's Los Angeles. While there he starts to watch pirate broadcasts from a group of "woke" individuals that lead Piper to discover the world is secretly run by a race of monsters pretending to be human that you can see when you wear some special sunglasses.

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Influenced by 50's sci fi monster flicks and heavily influential itself to modern conspiracy culture They Live does come across as kind of, I hate to say, almost possible. Like if I found out the world was run by a bunch of energy draining entities that only pretended to be human I honestly wouldn't even be that surprised. For sure They Live carries an anti capitalist message, as well as an anti authoritarian one. The only complaint I have is the fight scene goes on a bit too long.

They Live (Collector's Edition) Blu-ray

12) Sleepaway Camp (1983)

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Ha this movie has lots of awkward weird moments. Angela is the star of the movie, a kid with a traumatic past that involved the death of her parents. She goes to camp and a killer decides to start slicing up all the campers. Known for it's shocking twist ending Sleepaway Camp spawned a few sequels and a cult following. You have to watch until the end.

Sleepaway Camp (Collector's Edition) (BluRay/DVD Combo) Blu-ray

13) Santa Sangre (1989)

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Santa Sangre is a great surrealist horror film by Alexandro Jodorowsky (Holy Mountain, El Topo) that starts with a circus family in Mexico that has a crazed religious zealot mother who works the trapeze and a drunken cheating father who works as a knife thrower.

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The philandering husband and his batshit crazy wife have a battle and its pretty epic, leaving their son Fenix a mess. He ends up in a mental hospital and we catch up with him a few decades later. His mother is alive and deformed and she starts getting him to do her bidding. Its got a bit of influence from Hitchcock's Psycho and mixed with Jodorowsky's Fellini like visuals, and it's quite a movie. If you did not like Jodorowsky's previous work I would still encourage you to see Santa Sangre as it is his most accessible film. Filmed in Mexico it's made in English instead of most Jodorowsky movies which are in Spanish.

Santa Sangre Blu-ray

14) Evil Dead 2: Dead by Dawn (1987)

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Evil Dead 2 is comedy/horror flick that isn't quite a sequel, more like a re-envisioning. Given a much bigger budget to work with this time after super producer Dino De Laurentiis got involved, Evil dead 2 really showcases what Bruce Campbell can do in terms of physical comedy and what director Sam Raimi is capable of. It's pretty much a non stop assault of paranormal forces, and many viewers have noted it is somewhat of a homage to Three Stooges type of comedy. It's fun, it's gory, and if you wanted to know how Ash gets a metal hand, well you need to watch this. Many people call this the best of the trilogy.

Evil Dead 1 & 2 Double Feature Blu-ray

15 Aliens (1986)

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Directed by the legendary James Cameron "Aliens" is a follow up to Alien (1979) and is one of those rare times when a sequel is better then the original. I'm a big fan of tough female leads and no one is tougher than Sigourney Weaver as Ripley. Nominated for 7 Oscars Aliens had a great cast with Michael Biehn , Bill Paxton, and Lance Henriksen as an android named Bishop. Aliens takes place 50 years after the first one. Ripley has been in suspended animation and finds out her old ship has been colonized by the aliens, its full of eggs and a feral kid named newt. Great FX in this one, its hard to find anything to dislike.

Aliens 30th Anniversary Edition Blu-ray

16) Fright Night (1985)

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I love Fright Night. A young horror movie super fan thinks his new next door neighbor ( Chris Sarandon) may be a vampire and he seeks help from the only person he can think of, TV horror movie host and fading star Peter Vincent played by Roddy McDowall. The role was originally written with Vincent Price in mind, but he turned it down because he was sick of getting typecast as a horror movie icon.
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Fright Night did well at the box office, it was able to capitalize on the new PG 13 rating, allowing for more violence than PG but open to the teenage market unlike an R rated feature. Besides being a straight up vampire flick, Fright Night was also the story of a young man getting his girl seduced by an older man. And it is the story of a youth so alienated by high school clique society that joining a a group of blood sucking vampires sounds like a better deal. I think most kids can relate. Fright Night spawned a sequel, a remake, merchandise and a stage adaptation. I would much rather watch this than Twilight. Evil Ed went on to a career in porn, and not the kind with ladies if you know what I mean. I prefer to remember him for this, and the line: "You're so cool, Brewster!"

Fright Night blu ray

17) The Lost Boys (1987)

This movie was so 80's it hurts. Jason Patrick and Corey Haim play two brothers who are uprooted from Arizona by their single mother and move to fictional Santa Clara California, a town best known for its murder rate and large number of missing people posters. It doesn't take the brothers long to run into a family of vampires led by Kiefer Sutherland in probably his greatest role.

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Directed by Joel Schumacher The Lost boys has everything. Glammed out 80's styles, good music, awesome cinematography, and it's the best of the films staring the "Two Coreys" Feldman and Haim. This movie came out when I was in Jr High School, and I will always have a fondness for it. This was one of the first films to show vampires as hip and young and the poster even carried the tagline:

"Sleep all day. Party all night. Never die. It's fun to be a vampire"

Lost boys Blu Ray

18 The Hitcher (1986)

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Wow I see the critics hated this one, Gene Siskel Roger Ebert gave it zero stars. I find a lot of movies I like were savaged by critics. Wait until this list hits movie the top 50 if you want to see trash. Anyway the plot to The Hitcher involves C. Thomas Howell as a young guy driving a car across the USA to deliver it to a rich fellow who is moving across country and doesn't have time to do it himself. Deciding he could use someone to chat on the ride with he makes the mistake of picking up a hitchhiker played quite creepily by Rutger Hauer (RIP).

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While the hitchhikers motives are never explained it becomes obvious he is on a cross country crime spree killing all the people who pick him up. What follows is a cat and mouse game, with some pretty unlikely scenarios. I can suspend my disbelief for long enough to enjoy this one though. I rewatched it fairly recently, and I have to say I still enjoy it. Probably my second favorite Rutger Hauer movie after Blade Runner.

The Hitcher Blu Ray

19) Maniac (1980)

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Many 80's slashers took place in Forests, summer camps and other natural environments. Maniac on the other hand takes place in a grimy pre gentrification New York City. Directed by William Lustig and starring Joe Spinell as a serial killer who scalps women and staples their hair to mannequins, Maniac is sometimes called an exploitation film. At the height of the 1980's moral panic in the UK regarding horror films, Maniac was seized by police and it's video cassette version was censored.

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Cry baby critics hated this one too. Okay, its super violent, and lots of people get killed, but Spinell actually gives a hell of a performance a guy who talks to his mannequin collection and mumbles as he slashes people up. He is also able to control himself during his down time, working and even dating. I'd argue its a far more realistic portrayal of a serial killer than the one sided masked dudes with mommy issues that made up most slasher films.

Remember it was 1980, long before Silence of the Lambs or any of the current serial killer films. Back then a realistic serial killer movie had to happen, this movie just shocked people because it hadn't been done yet. One of the killings was actually based on a Son of Sam killing. Much of this film was shot without permits, and the director used profits from some porn films he had made to finance it. Remade in 2011 ago with Elijah Wood.

Maniac (1980) Blu-ray + Blu-ray + CD

20) Brain Damage (1988)

Director Frank (Basket case, Frankenhooker) Henenlotter made this movie about an intelligent parasitic creature named Elmer that attaches itself to human brains and secretes an addictive fluid that causes hallucinations in the host. He forces people to obtain human victims for him to consume their brains. A fairly heavy handed anti drug message (it was the just say no 80's) Brain Damage did poorly at the theater, only gaining a large audience on the video market. It's got some great surrealistic trip sequences, because it was the 80's and people who got high watched movies like this. I like movies that play both sides of the fence, its anti drug movie with scenes that can be enjoyed by people on drugs. Anyway I recommend having some beers, or doobies or something before watching Brain Damage.

Brain Damage (2-Disc Special Edition) Blu-ray + DVD

Thanks for reading part 3 coming soon


I loved most of these films....still do. Others I've not heard of and that gives me some homework...the kind that I like 😁

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