Movies – 1980s

*Batteries Not Included (1987)

The presence of the distinguished Hume Cronyn and Jessica Tandy makes this saccharine-sodden retread of Cocoon (1985) worth watching. They play residents of a doomed New York block of flats (an unscrupulous developer has sent thugs to clear the last five tenants) who find the unlikeliest of allies in the shape of a friendly group of alien space(...)

18 Again! (1988)

18 Again! (1988)

After an accident, 81-year-old Jack Watson (George Burns) find his birthday wish to be young again comes true, and his mind switches into the body of his 18-year-old grandson (Charlie Schlatter). Burns did the majority of his best work on stage, radio and TV with his wife Gracie Allen. However, most viewers will remember him as a(...)

1984 (1984)

Based on the novel by George Orwell and set in the totalitarian future state of Oceania, this is the story of citizen Winston Smith (John Hurt), a lowly outer party functionary who lives in London, which is the capital of the territory of Airstrip One (formerly Britain), and whose job it is to erase certain people(...)

2010 (1984)

Dazzling special effects and fancy space hardware dominate this follow-up to Stanley Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey. Yet, there's no feeling of awe, mystery or imagination as a joint American and Russian space crew try to find out what went wrong with the spacecraft Discovery lost in space some nine years ago. This high-tech misfire winds down with(...)

48 Hours (1982)

48 Hours is a Clint Eastwood movie without Clint Eastwood in it. Instead, it's got Nick Nolte, looking puffy and out of shape, as a bedraggled, two-fisted cop on the trail of two mad-dog killers terrorising San Francisco. So far, so bad. But 48 Hours also has Eddie Murphy as a horny, wisecracking convict, temporarily released from San(...)

52 Pickup (1986)

Elmore Leonard's clever screenplay and John Frankenheimer's staccato direction work effectively to bring about this chilling crime drama with colourful heroes and villains. Roy Scheider plays an industrialist who has an affair with an exotic dancer and is subsequently blackmailed by three creepy thugs. This dark melodrama is propelled by the way he deals with(...)

84 Charing Cross Road (1987)

84 Charing Cross Road (1987)

84 Charing Cross Road is a true story in which Anne Bancroft and Anthony Hopkins give distinguished performances as two strangers on opposite sides of the Atlantic whose lives are linked through a series of letters spanning more than twenty years. She's Helene Hanff - A salty, opinionated New York spinster with a passion for rare(...)

9½ Weeks (1986)

9½ Weeks (1986)

The title is a reference to the duration of the relationship between self-absorbed yuppie Wall Street shark John (Mickey Rourke) and smart, divorced Soho art gallery owner Elizabeth (Kim Basinger). Elizabeth is looking for true love, while John is searching for . . . well, for something involving blindfolds, ice cubes, chocolate syrup, and rolling(...)

A Fish Called Wanda (1988)

From the Monty Python stable, an English caper-comedy with a complex plot involving a gang of hopeless misfits who pull off a successful diamond robbery in London. The female member of the gang is an American gun moll named Wanda (Curtis). Her jewel-thief boyfriend Otto (Kline) is ex-CIA and a psychopath. The duo are assisted(...)

A View To A Kill (1985)

In the frozen wastes of Siberia, hundreds of Russian machine guns fire away at a familiar figure on skis. Yes, it's 007 again, leaping across a crevice to freedom in his 14th motion picture, pursued by Russian helicopters and snowmobiles. But nothing can stop him, not even an avalanche big enough to bury half the world's(...)

About Last Night (1986)

"It's about men, women, choices, sex, ambition, moving in, no sex, risk, underwear, friendship, career moves, strategy, commitment, love, fun, breaking up, making up, bedtime, last night..." This adaptation of David Mamet's 1974 play Sexual Perversity in Chicago suffers from a colourless performance from Rob Lowe and too little human chemistry. The result is a(...)

Absence of Malice (1981)

Sally Field plays Megan Carter - a Miami reporter who has been working for the city's leading newspaper for three years. She needs a scoop and nothing much is happening, so she decides to check into the latest developments on a case involving the mysterious disappearance of a local union boss. Overhearing some gossip about(...)

Absolute Beginners (1986)

This highly stylised musical adaptation of Colin MacInnes' novel celebrates the rise teen culture in late 50s London with a mish-mash of pop fashions and political and racial overtones. There are ample energetic song and dance numbers, at times reminiscent of West Side Story (1961). There are also violent confrontations, and all in all, it's a dazzling(...)

Absolution (1981)

Father Goddard (Richard Burton), an austere schoolmaster-priest at a Roman Catholic boarding school, considers Benjie Stanfield (Dominic Guard) to be an ideal candidate for the priesthood. But Stanfield's friendship with a local hippy (Billy Connolly) leads to murder. His confessions to Burton drive the priest insane, and he goes into the woods to dig up(...)

Abyss, The (1989)

This underwater epic features spectacular deep-sea special effects and elaborate high-tech hardware. But the story is bewildering and shallow. The plot, which mainly involves a plucky oil-rig crew lurches from one crisis to another - A doomed submarine, a nuclear warhead, a deranged naval officer, submersible craft chases and an alien creature all become part(...)

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