Looking for a blast from the past? Netflix has got you covered with a fantastic collection of ’80s movies that will transport you back in time. Whether you’re into iconic blockbusters, delightfully cheesy flicks, or critically acclaimed masterpieces, this list is constantly updated with the cream of the crop. So, why wait? Get ready for an epic journey down memory lane!
Netflix is a treasure trove of ’80s movie goodness. Prepare to be dazzled by timeless classics like Ghostbusters, Can’t Buy Me Love, Trading Places, Heathers, and Dead Poets Society. These films are guaranteed to ignite that nostalgic spark and transport you to a magical era long gone.
Have a secret love for an ’80s movie gem that’s not on this list? No worries! You can share your favorites and even add them to the collection. Let’s come together and celebrate the very best of the ’80s!
P.S. We’ve thrown in a few polarizing movies like Little Monsters, just to keep things interesting. Our goal is to bring you the most amazing ’80s movies that Netflix has to offer. So grab your snacks, get comfy, and brace yourself for a magical journey through time on Netflix!
1. E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial
E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial is an amazing mix of sci-fi and family drama, brought to life by the talented director Steven Spielberg. It tells the story of Elliott, a lonely boy who forms a special bond with an extraterrestrial called E.T., who is stuck on Earth. Unfortunately, as E.T.’s health deteriorates, the government is getting closer to discovering his whereabouts. In a race against time, Elliott, with the help of his older brother Michael and younger sister Gertie, must find a way to help E.T. escape and go back to his own planet. This incredible film received four Academy Awards, including Best Original Score, and continues to be cherished as a timeless classic in the world of cinema.
Directed by: Steven Spielberg
Actors: Henry Thomas, Dee Wallace, Peter Coyote
2. Ferris Bueller’s Day Off
In the classic comedy, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, we meet Ferris Bueller, played by Matthew Broderick, a high school senior who decides to ditch school for a day. He’s not just your average slacker though, Ferris is a master of manipulation. He cleverly tricks his parents, outsmarts his sister Jeanie, portrayed by Jennifer Grey, and convinces his best friend Cameron, played by Alan Ruck, to join him in his shenanigans. Together, they set out on an epic adventure in the bustling city of Chicago, complete with a vintage Ferrari, a visit to the iconic Sears Tower, and even a run-in with a local parade.
Meanwhile, their no-nonsense principal Rooney, portrayed by Jeffrey Jones, is hell-bent on catching Ferris red-handed. Rooney is determined to put an end to Ferris’ escapades and make him pay for his truancy. But what Rooney doesn’t realize is that this movie isn’t about punishment or heavy drama. Instead, it delves into themes of friendship and rebellion against societal norms, all while keeping the tone light and entertaining. Ferris Bueller’s Day Off proves that you don’t need violence or melodrama to explore these important ideas
Directed by: John Hughes
Actors: Matthew Broderick, Alan Ruck, Mia Sara
3. Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark
In the thrilling roller-coaster ride that is Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark, we tag along with the renowned archaeologist Dr. Indiana Jones (played by Harrison Ford), who has a knack for acquiring rare antiquities. The story takes place in 1936, where Jones finds himself thrust into a dangerous mission to outsmart his Nazi rivals, hell-bent on harnessing the power of the mystical Ark of the Covenant. Alongside his former flame Marion Ravenwood (played by Karen Allen), Jones must navigate treacherous terrains and face relentless enemies. Directed by the legendary Steven Spielberg, this film won four Academy Awards, cementing its status as a classic action-adventure flick that expertly combines history, mysticism, and heart-stopping moments.
Directed by: Steven Spielberg
Actors: Harrison Ford, Karen Allen, Paul Freeman
4. Red Dawn
In the movie Red Dawn, a quiet American town is suddenly invaded by foreign soldiers, turning it into a battleground. Leading the resistance is high school student Jed Eckert, played by Patrick Swayze, who rallies his brother Matt, portrayed by Charlie Sheen, and a group of fellow students. Together, they fight to defend their home and regain their freedom, displaying incredible bravery despite their young age. Directed by John Milius, this action-packed drama from 1984 explores the strength and determination of youth in the face of adversity, without resorting to excessive violence or explicit content.
Directed by: John Milius
Actors: Patrick Swayze, C. Thomas Howell, Lea Thompson
5. Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom
Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (1984) is an action-packed adventure flick that will keep you on the edge of your seat. Directed by the legendary Steven Spielberg, this film takes us on a thrilling journey with our hero, Indiana Jones (played by the incredible Harrison Ford), who finds himself in India on a mission to locate a legendary mystical stone.
Joining him on this epic quest are the feisty Willie Scott (portrayed by the talented Kate Capshaw) and the resourceful Short Round (played by the young and impressive Jonathan Ke Quan). Little did they know, their search would lead them deep into the catacombs of an ancient palace, where they stumble upon a secret cult involved in enslavement and horrifying human sacrifices.
As danger lurks around every corner and dark magic fills the air, our fearless hero bravely confronts his adversaries in a desperate attempt to put a stop to their sinister plans. Indiana Jones shows us what it truly means to face your fears and fight for what is right.
It’s no surprise that this film was recognized for its outstanding visual effects and received the prestigious Academy Award for Best Visual Effects. Prepare to be mesmerized as you witness the stunning visuals that bring this thrilling tale to life.
Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (1984) is a true cinematic masterpiece that combines heart-pounding action, captivating storytelling, and jaw-dropping visual effects. Get ready for an unforgettable adventure that will leave you breathless.
Directed by: Steven Spielberg
Actors: Harrison Ford, Kate Capshaw, Ke Huy Quan
6. Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade
Harrison Ford rocks the iconic fedora again as archaeologist Indiana Jones in the action-adventure flick Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. This time, he’s on a mission to save his dad, Dr. Henry Jones (played by Sean Connery), who got snatched because of his research on the Holy Grail. Alongside museum curator Marcus Brody (Denholm Elliott) and feisty love interest Elsa Schneider (Alison Doody), Indiana takes on the Nazis in a thrilling worldwide race against the clock. Directed by the legendary Steven Spielberg, the film even bagged an Academy Award for Best Sound Editing, highlighting its heart-pumping action scenes.
Directed by: Steven Spielberg
Actors: Harrison Ford, Sean Connery, Denholm Elliott
7. All Dogs Go to Heaven
In the animated feature All Dogs Go to Heaven, we meet Charlie B. Barkin, a roguish German Shepherd with an irresistible charm. Unfortunately, his life takes a tragic turn when he is killed by his former friend and business partner, Carface Carruthers. The story takes an unexpected twist as Charlie finds himself in heaven, but his desire for a fresh start on earth remains strong. Along his journey, he befriends Anne-Marie, a young orphan girl who has a special ability to communicate with animals. Together, they set out on a mission to redeem themselves. This film is a delightful mix of whimsical songs, intriguing characters, and an intriguing exploration of the eternal struggle between good and evil.
Directed by: Don Bluth
Actors: Dom DeLuise, Burt Reynolds, Daryl Gilley
8. Rain Man
In Rain Man, we meet Charlie Babbitt, played by Tom Cruise, a self-absorbed car dealer who stumbles upon a surprising revelation. He discovers that his estranged brother, Raymond, portrayed by Dustin Hoffman, is not only autistic but also possesses an incredible savant ability. The twist? Raymond has also inherited their father’s fortune. Intrigued by the prospect of getting his share of the inheritance, Charlie embarks on a journey across the country together with Raymond. Little did he know this trip would lead to unexpected bonding and personal discovery.
Directed by Barry Levinson, this 1988 drama achieved remarkable success, securing four Academy Awards, including Best Picture and Best Actor for Dustin Hoffman’s brilliant portrayal of Raymond. Rain Man delicately delves into the intricate dynamics of family relationships, shedding light on autism and the transformative power of personal growth. Through its captivating narrative, the film artfully explores these thought-provoking themes.
Directed by: Barry Levinson
Actors: Dustin Hoffman, Tom Cruise, Valeria Golino
9. National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation
In the hilarious holiday movie National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation, Clark Griswold, played by Chevy Chase, has big dreams of hosting a picture-perfect, traditional family Christmas. His wife Ellen, portrayed by Beverly D’Angelo, and their kids Rusty (Johnny Galecki) and Audrey (Juliette Lewis) are on board for the wild adventure. However, their plans for a smooth holiday are quickly derailed by the arrival of both sets of in-laws and the delightfully odd Cousin Eddie, played by Randy Quaid. From power outages to tree mishaps and even a chaotic holiday bonus mishap, the Griswold family is in for a wild ride. This iconic comedy classic, released in 1989, has become a must-watch every holiday season.
Directed by: Jeremiah S. Chechik
Actors: Chevy Chase, Beverly D’Angelo, Randy Quaid
In the 1981 comedy film Stripes, we meet John Winger, played by the hilarious Bill Murray. Unfortunately for John, he finds himself in a rut, losing his car, apartment, and even his girlfriend. Desperate to turn his luck around, he comes up with a wild idea: he convinces his best buddy Russell Ziskey, portrayed by the talented Harold Ramis, to join the Army with him. Little did they know, their offbeat personalities would clash with their superiors, especially the tough Sergeant Hulka, brilliantly portrayed by Warren Oates.
Amidst all the chaos and clashes, Stripes takes us on an unexpected journey. Under the skilled direction of Ivan Reitman, this movie seamlessly combines humor and adventure, creating a truly unforgettable story of friendship and resilience. From their initial days in basic training to an unforeseen mission in Europe, Winger and Ziskey’s antics will have you laughing out loud and rooting for them every step of the way. So buckle up and get ready for a wild ride!
Directed by: Ivan Reitman
Actors: Bill Murray, Harold Ramis, Warren Oates
11. Police Academy 2: Their First Assignment
After graduating from the first “Police Academy,” Carey Mahoney (played by Steve Guttenberg) and his fellow officers find themselves assigned to a precinct led by Capt. Pete Lassard (Howard Hesseman). Unfortunately, their new district is facing trouble from a gang headed by Zed (Bob Goldthwait). Lassard is given a deadline of 30 days to improve the situation or risk losing his position. As he tries to bring discipline to his inexperienced team, Lt. Mauser (Art Metrano) secretly schemes to take his job.
Directed by: Jerry Paris
Actors: Steve Guttenberg, Michael Winslow, Colleen Camp