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New wave music, aerobics, and cassette tapes, if you were a kid in the 80s then these things hit home like no other. The eighties are definitely making a comeback and what better way to show our love for that iconic decade than to list down 10 of the best movies kids of the 80s should remember. Ready for a burst of nostalgia? Enjoy!
Largely considered one of the must-see films of all time, Stand by Me is an Oscar-nominated film by Rob Reiner. It features a cast of young actors who would go on to dominate Hollywood for many years to come, including the likes of Will Wheaton, Jerry O'Connell, Corey Feldman, and Kiefer Sutherland.
As a matter of fact, the hit film almost didn't make it into production thanks to Coca-cola. Embassy Pictures, the film's original production company, was bought by the soda company. Coca-cola then announced just two days before the beginning of production that they were pulling the plug on the film. Thankfully, Norman Lear came in to save the day.
Lear, who knew Reiner from All in The Family, put up his own money to cover production. Another snag in production was casting the right voice of the adult Geordie, David Dukes, and Michael McKean both had run as the narrator before Richard Dreyfuss, who knew Reiner personally, finally nailed the part.
Who could forget John Matuszak as Sloth saying 'Hey you guys!'? I know I can't. The similarly unforgettable tale of a bunch of misfits becoming friends and going on death a defying adventure to find a lost treasure, The Goonies is the epitome of 80s young adult fantasy fiction come to life.
Fun fact about the film, apart from it starring future heavy hitters like Sean Astin and Corey Feldman, is that it was mostly shot on location in Oregon. It took about 5 months to wrap in Astoria, Oregon, and in soundstages in Burbank, California. The slide in the cave where One-Eyed Willy's ship was is also a real slide.
The end credits thank the Langford Surf Coaster Corporation for building it. Another great fact about the show is that it's said to be in the same universe as the Gremlins movies. Feldman is in both films, and Speilberg and Columbus also collaborated on the two films too. The dialogue referred to the tiny monsters as well.
Say it with me, 'Quack! Quack! Quack!' Okay, The Mighty Ducks premiered in 1992 but you had to be an 80s kid to enjoy it when it came out. The film about a down on his luck, and injured hockey pro that decided to become a pewie hockey coach, pretty much sparked a franchise new franchise for Disney.
Before the film's producers settled with their stars, Estevez and Jackson, a lot of big names were attached to the project. The role of Coach Bombay was first offered to Estevez's brother, Charlie Sheen, and the like of Tom Hanks and Michael J. Fox. Charlie Conway played by Jackson also had Leo DiCaprio and Jake Gyllenhaal audition.
Even the story had to be re-written. Gordon was originally an alcoholic who would coach teams to get revenge on his former coach. Thankfully, the mouse house had other plans and made it the family-friendly film franchise we know today. Disney's entrance into the NHL even lead to the creation of the Anaheim Mighty Ducks.
Alright, back to the 80s. Up next is a wonderfully weird little monster movie called the Gremlins. Although it was a summer film, it has since become a popular Christmas-time movie thanks to the film's setting. The film was a box-office hit that made back its budget during its opening weekend alone.
Thanks to Billy's irresponsible antics, we were all introduced to the Gremlins, little monster that sprouted from the back of Gizmo every time he got wet. Making this film didn't come cheap, as every animatronic model of a gremlin cost between $30,000 to $40,000 to make. Lucky for the filmmakers it was a hit.
The film's original script was also supposed to be much darker than its comedic tone. An early draft had Billy's mom get decapitated by on the little green monsters. Moreover, Billy's dad was a popular singer and songwriter before he became an actor. Hoyt Axton is best known for writing Three Dog Night's No. 1 hit single, "Joy to the World."
The 80s was a great time for high fantasy films. One such films was Willow, a collaboration of the great minds of Ron Howard and George Lucas. The idea for the film had come to Lucas' mind while he was still in the midst of working on Return of the Jedi. Willow's star, Warwick Davis was also there as one of the Ewoks.
As the story goes, Lucas already had the story and Davis in mind to play the role. However, he said it wasn't for then, but for a different time. Five years later, the film went into production with a 17-year-old Davis front and center. The film was originally supposed to be called Munchinks from The Wonderful Wizard of Oz characters.
While it wasn't a huge commercial success or a critic favorite, the film went on to earn a couple of Oscar nominations. One critic even went as far as to point out that the film was a little bit too derivative of Lucas' earlier world-building works, most especially of Star Wars. Nonetheless, 80s kids were treated to an amazing fantasy world.
One of the more iconic 80s teen movies was The Karate Kid. 'Wax on, Wax off', and that iconic crane kick in the film's final moments have gone down as iconic pop-culture moments. The film sparked a franchise and most likely inspired hundreds if not thousands of kids around the world to take up karate.
You might be surprised to know that the Mr. Miyagi, a.k.a Pat Morita was almost not cast for the film. The Japanese-American actor had become somewhat of a household name after a recurring, later regular role on the sitcom, Happy Days. It was only when he had grown a beard and re-auditioned did he land the role.
Major fans of the films have even gone as far as to track down some of the film's many locations. A lot of these locations are still standing today. A great example would be the apartment complex where Macchio's' Daniel LaRusso and his mom live in. One location that eluded fans for years was Mr. Miyagi's house.
Flight of the Navigator was a sci-fi fantasy film of a young boy that stumbles onto NASA space experiment and takes it for a ride into the future. What kid wouldn't love this, right? However, this wasn't what Disney was thinking when they were approached for the idea of the film.
In fact, production started with Viking Films, which went bankrupt mid-way and offered the film up to Disney so that it wouldn't be abandoned. The film giant eventually agreed to be a distribution partner for the US market, and the rest was history. Surprisingly enough, the film has a lot of Grease easter eggs.
The film's director, Randal Kleiser, also directed Grease. The film is set the same year as Grease was made and there's a scene wherein 'You're the One that I Want" is playing on the radio. Clever. The movie was also the film debut of a future-Hollywood star in Sara Jessica Parker.
When there's something strange, in your neighborhood, who you gonna call? The Ghostbusters, of course. This Oscar-nominated 1984 film, has aged impressively and is one of the best sci-fi/fantasy/comedies out there. Kids all over the world have dressed up as the iconic ghost hunting team ever since the movie came out.
Would you believe that Michael Keaton and Chevy Chase both turned down the role that Bill Murray eventually took? Well, it's true. Comedic greats John Candy and Eddie Murphy also turned down roles in the film. Let's be honest though, the film wouldn't be as great without the film's original cast.
One of the film's most memorable images is the gigantic Stay-Puft Marshmallow man. The marshmallow man suits that were used in the film cost a whopping $20,000 each. In the film, the marshmallow man explodes, leaving a whole block covered with its, uhm, remains. The filmmakers used 50 pounds of shaving cream to make that happen.
Honey I Shrunk the Kids answered the question: What would it be like to be quarter of an inch tall? In the film a bunch of kids end up befriending a giant ant, fighting a fearsome scorpion, and feasting upon a massive cream-filled cookie. The family adventure film starred the iconic Rick Moranis and launched a franchise for Disney.
Apart from making everything look ten times bigger than they actually are, the film's cost-effective filmmakers also tricked its viewers to believe that the set of the characters' suburban homes was actually in sunny California. The film was actually shot in Mexico. Yup, at the Churubusco Studios in Mexico City.
Other tricks they used was the gratuitous use of foam to create gigantic versions of your everyday things. Ingenius. Tim Burton's Batman, came out the same time the film premiered and thanks to the fact that it was always sold-out, people watched Honey, I Shrunk The Kids instead, allowing it to peak at number 2 at the box-office.
Last but definitely not the least on this least is the iconic and ever-quotable, The Princess Bride. William Goldman, who wrote the novel in 1973 and penned the screenplay, said that he wrote the story for his two daughters who wanted a story about a princess and a bride. They ended up coming up with title too.
One of the film's most notable characters is Fezzik, who was played by the late André the Giant. Reiner said that the then-professional wrestler was perfect for the role, but upon auditioning him, he could not understand a thing the man said. He told Cary Elwes that he recorded himself saying all of Andre's lines the way he wanted them said.
With practice, André, got better at performing them. Another two iconic characters were Miracle Max and Valerie played by Billy Crystal and Carol Kane. The two have been said to invent a deeper backstory about their characters in order to come up with better jokes and jabs at each other for their scenes.
Which of these iconic 80s films have you watched the most? Which one is your favorite and which ones did you think we should have included on this list? Let us know in the comment section and make sure to follow Amomama for more great content on your favorite films, tv shows, and movies.