REWIND & RANK: TOP 10 Movies 1984

RANKING THE YEAR’S BEST: FROM OSCAR MOVIES TO BLOCKBUSTERS

Walk down memory lane… And let the movie nerd debate begin.

rewind1984

Let’s REWIND to the year 1984.

These are personal TOP 10s ranking Oscar-nominated movies right alongside popcorn-munching blockbusters, indie films, b-movies, and cult classics. You never know, you might even uncover a hidden gem or two.

My TOP 10 is followed by HONORABLE MENTIONS and the Best of ART VS POPCORN.

1984 was filled with some all-time greats in several different genres. More and more big budget blockbusters debuted to a lot of success. The #1 movie at the box office was BEVERLY HILLS COP with $235 million domestically (not adjusted for inflation). Along with all of the fantastic smash hits were a few duds, like the notable disappointment SUPERGIRL.

Let’s dig in…


THE TOP 10

10. THE KARATE KID

The underdog sports hero story told perfectly. Mixing comedy, action, and philosophy, in all the best ways helped this movie stand the test of time. Bonus points for capturing the cheesy charm of the decade.

9. NAUSICAA OF THE VALLEY OF THE WIND

Legendary filmmaker Hayao Miyazaki (SPIRITED AWAY, PRINCESS MONONOKE) helms this imaginative anime masterpiece. Way ahead of its time, this visual feast inspired many artists. This post-apocalyptic, steampunk vibing adventure mixes STAR WARS-like spectacle and action along with a cautionary tale about nature and taking care of the planet.

8. THE NEVERENDING STORY

This big budget family adventure takes itself seriously despite being for young children. Conceptual designs, from characters, to setting, are absolutely fantastic. The compelling narrative follows a young boy reading a book. The story he reads is our movie, until the two worlds begin to merge and he must save the kingdom from his book. Nostalgic? Yes. Magical? Of course.

7. BEVERLY HILLS COP

The biggest movie of the year was also the funniest. Back in ’84, comedies could crack the Top 10 at the box office a lot easier than today… but it also helped to have Eddie Murphy in his R-rated prime coming hot off of SNL. The success of this word-of-mouth smash-hit lead to many imitators blending action and comedy… like Shane Black with LETHAL WEAPON and the DIE HARDS of the era.

6. GREMLINS

Spielberg presents this family tale gone wrong. Creatures run amok in a small snowy town at Christmas. Heart-warming and shocking, this was an odd blend at the time, giving some children nightmares. For me, the mayhem was always fun, and I fell in love with Gizmo.

5. INDIANA JONES & THE TEMPLE OF DOOM

The sequel to LOST ARK hams it up, aiming for campy popcorn fun. Some of it goes a little too goofy. That said, you still get a Spielberg-helmed adventure starring one of the best heroes in cinema history… and I’m talking about the man behind the myth: Harrison Ford.

4. BLOOD SIMPLE

One of the best film noirs ever comes to us from the Coen Brothers, making their stunning debut with this complex thriller that constantly unravels. Like a lot of noirs, a plan of murder goes horribly wrong, one horrifying twist at a time. Frances McDormand (FARGO) leads the way in this stylish ‘page-turner’. This very well could be the best Coen Bros. movie ever… and I’m aware of how huge that statement is. For me, it ranks right up there with FARGO, NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN, and BIG LEBOWSKI. This is also their most cinematic feature to date. The photography, compositions, and lighting are top notch, showing off the true craft of the Coens. Highly recommended despite its non-number one placement.

3. THE TERMINATOR

James Cameron’s low-budget ‘horror’ movie is entirely exciting. The original also blends sci-fi and action into the genre brew. Arnold Schwarzenegger became a bonafide movie star with his role as the villain in this all-time great cult classic. Essentially a chase film, the story never once lets up.

2. GHOSTBUSTERS

Another genre masher – this time mixing comedy with horror. This incredibly funny scary movie broke through into the mainstream big time. Bill Murray and fellow SNL-er Dan Aykroyd deliver memorable performances, while Rick Moranis tries to steal the show from under them. Amazing special FX for the time, this was blockbuster entertainment for the whole family to enjoy.

1. A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET

The best movie of the year is the one that affected me the most and stayed with me over the years. I have rewatched this numerous times and still get scared. Master horror director Wes Craven (SCREAM) deliberately makes this film work its way under your skin. A super-intriguing premise leads the way, but inventive FX and stylish direction seal the deal. From every angle, ELM STREET is one of the best horror movies ever made. The original is an astounding standout for the genre.


HONORABLE MENTIONS

listed alphabetically

BODY DOUBLE / CONAN THE DESTROYER / DUNE / GREYSTOKE, THE LEGEND OF TARZAN / THE KILLING FIELDS / THE LAST STARFIGHTER / POLICE ACADEMY / RED DAWN / REVENGE OF THE NERDS / THIS IS SPINAL TAP


THE BEST OF ART VS POPCORN

listed alphabetically

BACHELOR PARTY / BIRDY / BREAKIN’ / CHILDREN OF THE CORN / C.H.U.D. / FIRESTARTER / FOOTLOOSE / FRIDAY THE 13TH: THE FINAL CHAPTER / HOT DOG… THE MOVIE / ICEMAN / NIGHT OF THE COMET / PURPLE RAIN / ROMANCING THE STONE / SPLASH / STARMAN / STAR TREK 3: THE SEARCH FOR SPOCK / TOP SECRET / THE WOMAN IN RED


MY WATCH-LIST

notable films i need to watch

1984 / 2010 / THE ADVENTURES OF BUCKAROO BANZAI / AGAINST ALL ODDS / AMADEUS / THE BOUNTY / DREAMSCAPE / THE NATURAL / ONCE UPON A TIME IN AMERICA / PARIS, TEXAS / A PASSAGE TO INDIA / PLACES IN THE HEART / REPO MAN / SIXTEEN CANDLES / A SOLDIER’S STORY / STRANGER THAN PARADISE


above: BLOOD SIMPLE retro trailer & modern trailer (for new 4k release)

What do you think?

more SUPERGIRL, as per cheeky request 

Stay tuned for Rewind & Rank: The 1970s – Part 2.


 

25 thoughts on “REWIND & RANK: TOP 10 Movies 1984

  1. Okay a Top 10, The Terminator, Starman, Paris,Texas, Repo Men, Once Upon a Time in America, Ghostbusters, A Nightmare on Elm Street, The Karate Kid. I really want to see The Killing Fields and this hot dog movie?

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I don’t think this is one of the stronger years and yet it’s full of films that seared onto my conscious at such an impressionable age. I don’t feel like I can rationally discuss The Neverending Story, it’s The Neverending Story. 🙂 Thankfully I didn’t see The Terminator when I was a kid but I was certainly in a rush to be old enough to see it. I’m still hoping to see Buckaroo Banzai.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Well, nostalgia weighs differently for different folks. That said, I believe Neverending took itself seriously. I love the narrative device of a boy reading the book, and the book being the main story on screen (a la Princess Bride). I think Wolfgang Peterson directed it and took a serious approach (maybe not as serious as his earlier Das Boot, but I digress). Today, I still appreciate the creature and world designs. The film still looks beautiful and the score / songs still sound great.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I added more Supergirl photos at the end for ya 😉 I also added in a trailer for Nausicaa to give you a better idea of what it’s like. Also, I added little blurbs for the Top 10. I hope you re-enjoy this special feature article 🙂 Thanks for commenting, buddy.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I always remember my Dad saying to me “Yeah Karate Kid was a good little movie that had some handy things to say about living your life.” When your Dad says that as a throw away line it kind of makes a bigger impression on you but the Karate Kid does. Balance. That’s deep man.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hehehe. Nausicaa is a Miyazaki flick. Very imaginative adventure with meaning, like his other legendary stories like Spirited Away, Castle in the Sky, and my fav, Princess Mononoke. If you like those kind of films, you should enjoy the beauty and spectacle of Nausicaa, especially if you like to see what other countries whip up as fantasy adventure.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. You’re in for a treat with Paris, Texas. Don’t read anything about it, even the back of a cover. Just watch it. I knew nothing about it when I saw it except that Wim Wenders directed it and it was a classic. Nothing about the plot. Not knowing what was going to happen was wonderful. A truly unique original film. Repo Man coincidentally another joy. You’re in for a good time Dan. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Blood Simple is one of my fav film noirs, up there with Double Indemnity. And I know it may be difficult to imagine, but this is the BEST Coen Bros movie ever. I love FARGO and LEBOWSKI, but nothing kept me on the edge of my seat like BLOOD SIMPLE. Plus, you get amazing cinematography. Find it and spread the word. This thriller is quite the white-knuckle twister.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. It was tough to rank those heavyweights. Really hard to pick a #1. I went for movies I watched the most and still enjoy rewatching. I also weighed in how influential they were. Thanks for chiming in! What’s your #1 (if you can pick just one hehehehe) ?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. That would be hard to do, but A Nightmare on Elm Street is towards the top on my horror movie list. Indiana Jones showed me the world as a kid growing up in a small town so that will always be high for me. Couldn’t pick a number one. It would be too hard. So many of those movies way back then shaped me into adulthood.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I hear ya buddy. It’s hard to rank with nostalgia involved. Maybe ranking by genre would have been easier on me 😉 I try to rank on what I still ‘enjoy’ more today (whether it be because of a dose of nostalgia or not). Good point about movies showing the world, they definitely do… and they show the internal world too.

        Liked by 2 people

    1. It was a good one, eh. I haven’t seen Amadeus yet. I know. I feel bad about it 😉 I’ve heard such great things about it too. I think i need to remedy that. So you dug on a couple music movies huh. I really enjoyed both of them too, but Prince has the better music. Thanks for chiming in, Cindy. Stay tuned for more Top 10s coming soon.

      Liked by 1 person

So... What'd you think?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s