Monday, August 21, 2006

The '80s

Galley Friend Michael Brandon McClellan has written a stirring ode to the '80s which, as an essay, is worth reading on its own. But it's actually just the wind-up to his asking: What is the Greatest '80s Movie?

Note, he's not asking for the greatest movie of the '80s, but for the best and most representative film of the decade. He lists a number of excellent contenders. I would narrow the field to five nominees, each for a different reason:

The Empire Strikes Back

Rocky IV

Ferris Bueller's Day Off

Top Gun

Big


Discuss.

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

"I guess what I'm trying to say is that if I can change, and you can change, everyone can change!"

This quote from 'Rocky IV' may sum up the entire '80's peace movement.

Joe said...

An interesting selection of movies, JVL. As much as I like Dante's riff from Clerks on Empire vs. Jedi as being a fundamental explanation as to why Empire Strikes Back is the most representative movie of the '80s. Sometimes the bad guys do win, I'm picking Ferris. The key to Ferris is not Bueller. It's Cameron, who does address his issues. Kicking the Ferrari, asking his absent father, "Who do you love? Who do you love? You love a car!" He comes to grips with what makes him uptight in one cathartic moment of rage.

It's not very realistic. But it sums up a lot of the disillusionment kids in the eighties felt, and you hear it reflected in the music of the early nineties, nihilistic, anti-social grunge rock, about Jeremy speaking in class today.

Anonymous said...

Real Genius, hands down.

Anonymous said...

Note, he's not asking for the greatest movie of the '80s, but for the best and most representative film of the decade.

He is? I don't get that from the post.

On your terms, the most representative movie of the '80s was Top Gun. It had probably the most representative star of the 80s in Cruise. It had an 80s theme - USA kicks ass - like Rocky IV (or, better, Rambo II). It had 80s pop music. It had a vertiable plethora of other cast members that went on to be huge stars - Edwards, Ryan, Robbins, Kilmer. And it had the awesome James Tolkan.

As to the best movie of the 80s, I find it hard to understand why Raiders doesn't even deserve a mention. Unbelieveable.