Movies – 1980s

Avenging Angel (1984)

This sequel to Angel (1984) has former teen hooker Molly “Angel” Stewart (now played by Betsy Russell replacing winsome Donna Wilkes, star of the first film) now studying law at university full-time, having given up her nighttime job of prostitution. When Lieutenant Andrews, the vice cop who rescued her from the streets, is murdered by(…)

Babette’s Feast (1987)

Gabriel Axel’s Danish film – and 1987’s Oscar winner for Best Foreign Film – is an Isak Dinesen tale about a French servant (beautifully, stoically played by Stephane Audran) in a strict Lutheran household in Denmark. To repay her hard, deprived hosts for their kindness, she spends her entire lottery winnings doing the one thing(…)

Baby Boom (1987)

Diane Keaton is J.C. Wiatt, the quintessential Ms. magazine career girl – married to her job, working twelve hours a day, making six figures a year, with no time for human emotions. Even her lovemaking with roommate-boyfriend Harold Ramis is timed to never take up more than four minutes of her valuable time. Then the bottom falls(…)

Baby, It’s You! (1983)

An absorbing, highly charged, teenage romance by writer-director John Sayles. The emotional story of star-crossed young lovers stumbles over occasional holes in the plot, yet the material is consistently compelling. Trenton High School, New Jersey circa 1967 is the setting. Middle-class Jewish princess Jill Rosen (Rosanna Arquette) and brilliantined Italian ruffian Albert “Sheik” Capadilupo (Vincent(…)

Bachelor Party (1985)

Patchy comedy about a wild party for a soon-to-be-married young man played with moderate charm by Tom Hanks. Aside from Hanks’ likable presence, the film features an array of sleazy characters who instigate various vulgar sex escapades laced with the usual assortment of scatological jokes. There’s a bit of high-minded philosophising amid the degenerate shenanigans:(…)

Back To School (1986)

Middle-aged Thornton Melon (Rodney Dangerfield) is the poster boy for self-made millionaires. He’s taken his immigrant father’s humble tailor shop and turned it into an national chain of Tall & Fat Shops. He went on from there to diversify until now he owns Melon Enterprises, a worldwide corporation. Thornton Melon is far from being a(…)

Back To The Beach (1987)

Back To The Beach (1987)

It’s hard to imagine who Lyndall Hobbs thought would love her parody of early sixties beach movies like How To Stuff A Wild Bikini (1965) and Beach Blanket Bingo (1965) – kids who were too young to have seen the originals or ancient dodo’s who remembered the old films with fondness. Frankie Avalon and Annette Funicello are together again as Ohio(…)

Back To The Future (1985)

When Marty McFly is sent back to 1955 in Doc Brown’s time-travelling De Lorean, he must successfully get his parents to fall in love. If not, he will be erased from existence. He and “Doc” (Dr Emmett Brown) also have to figure out how to generate 1.21 “jigawatts” of electricity in order to send him(…)

Back To The Future, Part II (1989)

Doc Brown’s time machine works its magic once more in this merry sequel to Back To The Future. Barely back to 1985 after his original jaunt, Marty McFly (pictured below) is whisked forward to 2015, along with his girlfriend Jennifer, by Doc Brown. Marty’s mission this time is to prevent a crime involving his teenage son(…)

Bad Boys (1983)

Here he comes face to face with his victim’s vengeful brother and has to fight for survival. Littered with violence (a revenge rape, shootings, fights) and flashy direction from Rick Rosenthal (Halloween II), this can be hard to stomach, but does boast an early strong, neurotic performance from Penn, who has since gone on to(…)

Bad Taste (1987)

An Alien Investigation and Defence team are dispatched to hunt down some extra-terrestrial aliens who have depopulated a small town, using the humans as stock for their intergalactic fast-food chain. Derek must now save the day and the world with his chainsaw before the meat eaters spread across the whole planet. Peter Jackson’s hilarious tale(…)

Bad Timing (1980)

Bad Timing is seen in flashback after a traumatic incident sends young American girl Milena Flaherty (Theresa Russell) to an emergency room in Vienna with a drug overdose which advances into a coma. Milena was distraught over her stormy relationship with Alex Linden (Art Garfunkel), a doctor of psychology with a jealous streak that has(…)

Bagdad Cafe (1988)

Bagdad Cafe was the first American film made by German director Percy Adlon. Casting his German star, the flamboyantly overweight Marianne Sägebrecht to lead an otherwise all-American cast, notably Jack Pallance and CCH Pounder, he came up with a truly magical movie. Sägebrecht is a Bavarian tourist, dumped in the Mojave desert by her unpleasant husband.(…)

Barfly (1987)

An autobiographical account of Henry Chinaski – a booze-soaked poet-writer (Charles Bukowski wrote the screenplay based on his experiences) with Mickey Rourke in the title role. This film is no “Lost Weekend” saga; Rourke’s messy character seems buoyant and even satisfied with his grungy lifestyle, but the squalid atmosphere and Rourke’s whiny delivery of his(…)

Basket Case (1982)

This gore-drenched, gutter-trash classic is one of the key horror movies of the 1980s. It tells the bizarre story of the Bradley brothers – normal Duane (Kevin Van Hentenryck) and his hideously deformed Siamese twin Belial, whom he carries around in a wicker basket – and how they wreak revenge on the quack doctor who(…)