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Overstreet

Best Films of 1980

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Have you seen 10 or more films that were released in 1980?

If so, well... what's your top 10 of 1980?

Here are some of the heavy-hitters listed to help your memory:



  • Raging Bull
  • Airplane!
  • The Big Red One
  • The Shining
  • Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back
  • The Elephant Man
  • Ordinary People
  • Mon Oncle d'Amérique
  • Kagemusha
  • Melvin and Howard
  • Coal Miner's Daughter
  • The Last Metro
  • My Brilliant Career
  • Breaker Morant
  • The Long Good Friday
  • The Stunt Man
  • Loulou
  • Tess
  • Bad Timing
  • Christ Stopped at Eboli
  • American Gigolo
  • Knife in the Head
  • The Ninth Configuration
  • Gates of Heaven
  • Gloria
  • Heaven's Gate
  • Dressed to Kill
  • Return of the Secaucus 7
  • Every Man for Himself
  • My Bodyguard
  • The Blues Brothers
  • Confidence
  • From the Life of Marionettes
  • Resurrection
  • Fame
  • The Great Santini
  • The Handyman
  • I Sent a Letter to My Love
  • Out of the Blue
  • Shogun Assassin
  • Stir
  • The Gods Must Be Crazy
  • The Long Riders
  • The Great Rock 'n' Roll Swindle
  • Radio On
  • Rude Boy
  • Sir Henry at Rawlinson End
  • Superman II
  • Moscow Does Not Believe in Tears
  • Friday the 13th
  • Grown-Ups
  • Hardly Working
  • The Little Richard Story
  • The Metaphor
  • Garlic Is as Good as Ten Mothers
  • The Life and Times of Rosie the Riveter
  • Altered States
  • Popeye
  • Caddyshack
  • The Nest
  • The Idolmaker
  • Special Treatment
  • Constans
  • The Black Marble
  • Divine Madness
  • One-Trick Pony
  • Bronco Billy
  • Brubaker
  • The Dogs of War
  • Flash Gordon
  • The Fog
  • Hide in Plain Sight
  • Hopscotch
  • 9 to 5
  • Private Benjamin
  • Prom Night
  • Seems Like Old Times
  • Stardust Memories
  • Stir Crazy
  • Urban Cowboy
  • Used Cars
  • Willie & Phil
  • City After Dark, Manila by Night
  • Germany, Pale Mother
  • Inferno
  • Journeys from Berlin/1971
  • Who's Singing Over There?
  • Somewhere in Time
  • Tom Horn

I've seen

  • Star Wars: Episode V -The Empire Strikes Back
  • Raging Bull
  • Airplane!
  • The Shining
  • Popeye
  • Stardust Memories
  • The Gods Must Be Crazy
  • Caddyshack
  • Altered States
  • Superman II
  • Flash Gordon
  • Private Benjamin

But that's hardly enough to give me any credibility with a top 10. I doubt I'd ever find enough good 1980 films to keep those top four titles out of my top 10.

Edited by Overstreet

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I'll have to think about this. I know one thing: TESS is up there, probably in the number one spot. Phenomenal film.

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That was about the time I was divorcing and moving back to Southern California from West Texas. But lets see:

* Raging Bull This is the best of the bunch

* Airplane!

* The Shining

* Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back

* The Elephant Man

* Ordinary People

* Coal Miner's Daughter

* Breaker Morant

* Return of the Secaucus 7

* My Bodyguard

* The Blues Brothers

* Fame

* The Great Santini

* The Gods Must Be Crazy Perhaps my favorite of this bunch

* Superman II

* Garlic Is as Good as Ten Mothers

* Altered States

* Popeye

* Bronco Billy

* Hide in Plain Sight

* 9 to 5

* Private Benjamin

* Urban Cowboy

* Used Cars

Edited by Darrel Manson

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The Gods Must Be Crazy is a 1980 film!?

...

Huh. So it is.

But it didn't have a limited American release until 1982, or a wide American release until 1984. Which would probably explain why I was able to see it on my first date with a girl ever, here in Canada, in 1985, or possibly even in 1986. (If memory serves, the film played in that one theatre for at least a year, and I had already seen the film with my dad, who had lived in South Africa during his college years and was familiar with the director's earlier movies. The theatre in question doesn't exist any more, alas.)

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I'll have to think about this. I know one thing: TESS is up there, probably in the number one spot. Phenomenal film.

I take this back. KAGEMUSHA is on that list.

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About a year-and-a-half ago, I went through a kick of watching films from the early '80s. I only did one write-up, apparently. Of those, the real discovery was Michel Deville's Voyage en deuce. Grown Ups and Loulou are also amazing. And if you can ever track it down, Francis Mankiewicz's Les Bons Debarras is a great, great film.

My Top 10 (alphabetized) for 1980 would look something like this:

American Gigolo

Bad Timing

Les Bons Debarras

The Elephant Man

Grown-Ups

Loulou

Raging Bull

Sauve qui peut

The Shining

Voyage en deuce

My friend Jaime's site, Unexamined Essentials, is a great resource for finding off-the-beaten-track recommendations.

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[*]The Elephant Man

[*]Airplane!

[*]Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back

[*]My Bodyguard

[*]The Blues Brothers

[*]The Gods Must Be Crazy

[*]Superman II

[*]9 to 5

[*]Seems Like Old Times

[*]Used Cars

Many of these I saw when they came out, but was too young to get it.

I'm not a fan of Raging Bull or The Shining. Both did nothing for me.

My favorite "prestige film" of the list is, hands down, The Elephant Man. I cry every time.

My inner ten-year old loves My Bodyguard (in addition to the franchise and sci-fi films). Wasn't Battle Beyond the Stars a 1980 film too?

ETA: shortened to Top 10 list.

Edited by Nick Alexander

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I'm not a fan of Raging Bull or The Shining. Both did nothing for me.

I'm not crazy about RAGING BULL, either, but I dig THE SHINING; it's not a great film--it's definitely a lesser Kubrick outing--but few films are as successful in creating a malevolent atmosphere.

My favorite "prestige film" of the list is, hands down, The Elephant Man. I cry every time.

Reduces me to tears. Love it. That's not to say it doesn't have problems, 'cause it has its share of flaws, but it's the only film I can count on to get me weepy.

My top picks for 1980:

BAD TIMING

THE ELEPHANT MAN

KAGEMUSHA

THE SHINING

TESS

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My Top 5:

The Empire Strikes Back

The Shining

Kagemusha

Superman II

Airplane!

Raging Bull has never done much for me. Can I still call myself a Scorsese fan?

Edited by J.R.

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