What movies did people look up to during the 80s/90s?

submitted by Wild Bill

You know how, today, we take inspiration or look up to “classic” films like The Godfather and The Shawshank Redemption? Well, what did people in the 80s/90s look up to? 70s movies? Black and white movies? What were seen as classics back then?

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The Godfather came out in 1972

Planet of the Apes in 1968

Apocalypse Now in 1979

Close Encounters of the Third Kind in 1977

2001: A Space Odyssey in 1968

Halloween in 1978

Taxi Driver in 1976

A Clockwork Orange in 1971....

Great cinema existed before the 80's.


Alien, Star Wars, too


don't forget Star Trek: The Motion Picture!



You may be interested in this post if you haven't already seen it....


You’re right! Although, I have already heard the news. Hooray!

Thanks for sharing anyway!

Altima NEO

I was gonna say, people were parodying and mimicing those movies then in the 80s and 90s.

Animaniacs alone had parodies of all that. Muppet babies too.

AwkwardLookMonkeyPuppet , edited

And before then would have been movies like The Searchers, and before that, stuff like It's a Wonderful life. The golden age of cinema was loooong before the 90's. Heh.


Just using Letterboxd decade filters gives a pretty good snapshot of the great cinema from each decade.








That's a fun feature. Thanks for posting it!


I feel like in the 80s and 90s they'd still look to The Godfather.


Can confirm this was the case 90's at least


Off the top of my head:


Citizen Kane

It's a Wonderful Life

The Wizard of Oz

Ben Hur



Rebel Without a Cause

American Graffiti

The Graduate


North by Northwest


Let me throw *12 Angry Men* on the pile. I've rarely (maybe never) been so astonished at..., whatever that movie is. Grabs you by the short and curlies, won't let go. And the premise could hardly sound more boring.


thank you for the reminder to rewatch north by northwest


Add The Ten Commandments to your list. So let it be written. So let it be done.

Boozilla , edited

Logan's Run, 1976*

Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, 1969

Easy Rider, 1969

A Clockwork Orange, 1971

Dirty Harry, 1971

Taxi Driver, 1976


1976 for Logan's Run. You can tell because Farah


You're right, I put the date of the novel.


Such a good movie, even today it's great. And the soundtrack is just brilliant!

SSTF , edited

Yes, in the 90s all we had were silent black and white movies. The sight of a train barreling down the tracks at us in the theater was a confusing and terrifying experience.


You’re right but I don’t think OP was talking about the 1890s

best_username_ever , edited

I can’t help you because I was too busy finding good stuff of the the 80s in VHS.

Old movies were not "boring" or more "classic" but it was as hard to find as regular movies, so there was no point focusing on a specific decade. And since it was difficult to find for most people around me, we were looking for 80s movies.

Also you had to live next to a friend who had a good collection of movies. In most countries it was difficult.

I don’t know if I make myself clear, but if you had the choice between the new Spiderman and the Godfather to please your whole family, which one would you choose?

CaptnKarisma , edited

Well for a 90's and 80's movies I really liked:

Robin Hood Men in Tights, A Goofy Movie was solid, Biodome, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Ghostbusters


Pizza dude's got 30 seconds...


That scene where Raphael shouts damn broke my 10 year old brain, the ninja turtles cussing 😳


With awesome soon-to-be classics coming out literally every other week, we didn’t have to look up to anything from the past.


Sixteen Candles.


Anything with John Wayne or Clinton Eastwood Jr. In it was quite popular with my folks.


Not to speak for OP (I'm going to speak for OP) but I think the question is not "were there good movies before $CURRENT_YEAR" but rather: how much time needs to pass before a movie is recognized as a classic, and has that amount of time remained static?

If I am wrong please correct me


Your wrong because op asked a question and you negated it proposing they ask a new question for no reason since their question still has answers.

Why do Linux users do this?


It's because I am riddled with Autism. Sorry