Students choose the 5 must-see movies from the 1980s

From black-and-white silent pictures accompanied by an orchestra, to modern-day film, where it is next to impossible to distinguish CGI from actual footage, movies have endured through history. Perhaps one of the great eras of cinematography was the 1980s, giving viewers some of the timeless household titles that are beloved by many. Based on a recent Milestone poll, the 87 McNicholas student respondents ranked these five 80’s movies as must-sees.

back to the future

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Back to the Future (PG): Making its debut on the big screen in 1985, the movie follows Marty McFly (Michael J. Fox) and his scientist friend Doc Brown (Christopher Lloyd) as they are thrown back in time to the 1950s in a time-travelling DeLorean. When complications arise, Marty meets a younger version of his parents, and it is up to him to make sure they fall in love or else he will cease to exist in the future. From directors Steven Spielberg and Robert Zemeckis, Back to the Future, a nearly two hour film, is in the science fiction/fantasy genre, with two sequels that followed.


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Ghostbusters (PG): After losing their jobs at a New York City university, a team of scientists (Bill Murray, Harold Ramis, and Dan Aykroyd) start a company that hunts ghosts for money. During their adventures they discover a gateway to another dimension, and they find themselves at the forefront of a conflict much bigger than they had bargained for when it is up to them to protect the city. This 1984 supernatural fantasy was directed by Ivan Reitman and runs for 1hour and 47 minutes.

the goonies

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The Goonies (PG): This romance/adventure film from 1985, running for 1 hour and 58 minutes, follows a band of children who are dealing with a property developing company which plans to destroy their home to build a country club. The children discover an old pirate map in the attic, which leads them on an underground adventure in a cavern where danger and treasure abound. The movie was directed by Richard Donner, and stars Sean Astin, Josh Brolin, Corey Feldman, Jeff Cohen, and Johnathan Ke Quan.

star wars

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Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back (PG-13): One of the most well-known movie franchises of all time released the fifth episode of the Star Wars saga in 1980. Directed by Irvin Kershner and starring Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, and Carrie Fisher, The Empire Strikes Back follows Luke Skywalker in his journey to become a Jedi as the Imperial forces continue to attack the rebels. With the guidance of a Jedi master by the name of Yoda, Luke must resist the call to the dark side. The movie is a science fiction/fantasy and it runs for 2 hour 7 minutes.

princess bride

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The Princess Bride (PG): Directed by Rob Reiner, The Princess Bride is a 1987 fairytale adventure movie about a beautiful young woman who must be reunited with her one true love, alongside a farmer-boy turned pirate, while battling mythical obstacle to save the kingdom of Florin. The film is based off of the William Goldman novel The Princess Bride, and it runs for 1 hour and 38 minutes.

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