Welcome to the Chatter Box Film lists, where we pick our favourite horror films of the 1980’s.
Whether you’ve come here for what to watch on Halloween or in general; there’s a variety to choose from. This list contains movies about vampires, werewolves, ghosts, aliens, supernatural/demonic posessions and zombies.
Here are our top picks for 80’s horror movies:
22. The Dead Zone (1983)
Starting off with this horror-thriller story by Stephen King and directed by David Cronenberg. Christopher Walken’s character Johnny Smith awakens from a coma; caused by a car accident that lasted many years.
There’s just one problem, he’s been given a new ‘gift’ that makes him see terrifying visions of the future when he touches anyone, especially when he shakes the hand of rising politician Greg Stillson (Martin Sheen). Johnny becomes haunted by what he could prevent and sets out to kill him.
21. Halloween II (1981)
It wouldn’t be a horror collection without at least mentioning a slasher film from the Halloween franchise. This is the original follow-up to the first movie… which has now been replaced by Halloween (2018) as canon instead.
Dr. Loomis is still hunting for Michael Myers as he makes his way through Haddonfield once again. This one was directed by Rick Rosenthal and written by John Carpenter and Debra Hill.
There were three more Halloween movies released in the 80s, especially one anthology movie that didn’t even feature Michael Myers called Halloween III: Season of the Witch.
20. Trick or Treat (1986)
A movie with a literal killer sound system! Young Eddie Weinbauer (Marc Price) is a character that’s picked on in school when he befriends his favourite musician… who happens to be dead.
Sammi Curr (Tony Fields) is menacing and electrifying, as he exacts his revenge out on all those around him. A movie also for rock fans that features cameos from Gene Simmons to Ozzy Osbourne.
19. The Beyond (1981)
Lucio Fulci’s gory supernatural movie is about a young woman (Catriona MacColl) who inherits an old hotel where there is a gateway to Hell. All sorts of scary creatures are lurking in the darkness to prey on visitors. Also has brilliant soundtracks from composer Fabio Frizzi and the story is written by Dardano Sacchetti.
18. The Thing (1982)
Based on a story by John W. Campbell, John Carpenter brings out a movie about an alien creature that falls from space near an Antartic Research Station. Helicopter pilot (Kurt Russell) and a group of other people are stranded with this monster, that that can adapt to survive, by morphing into humans and other creatures, and hunting them all down. A very gory movie, the special effects department did a great job creating the monster and gooey mess of blood and guts.
17. Maniac Cop (1988)
Directed by William Lustig. This is about a cop called Matt Cordell (Robert Z’Dar) who got put in prison and the prisoners that hurt him. He comes back from the dead, dressed in a police uniform, and acts out his revenge.
Three police officers played by Tom Atkins, Bruce Campbell and Laurene Landon look for the killer, however the Maniac Cop finds them first!
16. The Fly (1986)
From director David Cronenberg and a story that was written by George Langelaan in 1957. This science-fiction/horror was Jeff Goldblum’s breakout role about a scientist called Seth Brundle; who mutates into a giant fly after an experiment that goes horribly wrong. Geena Davis is also starring as Veronica Quaife.
15. Aliens (1986)
Ripley (Sigourney Weaver) returns in James Cameron’s sequel to Ridley Scott’s Alien (1979). In the hopes that a new crew on a space vessel, will finally take down the terrifying Xenomorphs, Ripley agrees to help. They are gravely mistaken as the alien attacks them one by one. Also starring Michael Beihn, Bill Paxton and Lance Henriksen.
14. The Lost Boys (1987)
Joel Schumacher’s horror hit about a two brothers in a new town, discovering a dangerous group of vampires. The film stars Corey Haim, Keifer Sutherland, Corey Feldman, Alex Winter and Jason Patric.
13. Friday the 13th movies (1980 – 1989)
A great slasher movie about Jason Voorhees; who drowned in Camp Crystal lake.
However, Jason doesn’t actually show much in this first film, it’s more about his psychotic mother taking revenge on unsuspecting counsellors at the summer camp. Directed by Sean S. Cunningham and written by Victor Miller and Ron Kurz – starring Kevin Bacon.
Jason is more of a serial killer in part 2 onwards, as seen wearing this cloth bag over his head. In later movies he will go onto the wear that iconic hockey mask. There were plenty of parts released during the 80’s.