Movies We Still Care About – 1987 – Part 3 (R-Z)

(For an explanation of this, read the Introduction.  Other posts in this series can be found here.)

Movies We Still Care About

  • Adventures in Babysitting
  • Dirty Dancing
  • Evil Dead 2
  • (First half of) Full Metal Jacket
  • Hellraiser
  • Lethal Weapon
  • The Lost Boys
  • Moonstruck
  • Predator
  • The Princess Bride
  • Raising Arizona
  • Robocop
  • Spaceballs
  • The Untouchables
  • Wall Street

Other Notable Movies

  • Planes, Trains and Automobiles
  • The Running Man

Best Picture Nominees:

  • The Last Emperor (Winner)
  • Broadcast News
  • Fatal Attraction
  • Hope and Glory
  • Moonstruck

Top Grossing Films (US)

  1. Three Men and a Baby
  2. Fatal Attraction
  3. Beverly Hills Cop II
  4. Good Morning, Vietnam
  5. Moonstruck
  6. The Untouchables
  7. The Secret of My Success
  8. Stakeout
  9. Lethal Weapon
  10. The Witches of Eastwick

Rotten Tomatoes Top Movies

  1. The Princess Bride (97%)
  2. Evil Dead 2 (98%)
  3. Wings of Desire (98%)
  4. Broadcast News (98%)
  5. Full Metal Jacket (94%)
  6. Planes, Trains and Automobiles (94%)
  7. Moonstruck (92%)
  8. The Last Emperor (91%)
  9. Raising Arizona (90%)

Movies We Still Care About

Raising Arizona

This has a weird quirky charm that appeals to people who like those sort of things, and was the first major success for the Coen Brothers and Nic Cage.  Its quirkiness isn’t for everyone.  A good barometer for whether or not you’ll like this movie is this scene:



An iconic character that has become part of our culture, and probably the peak of hyper-violent 80s action movies.  (Which actually was intended to be even more violent, but was toned down in order to avoid an X rating.)

Here’s one of the tamer scenes, where Robocop shoots a thug in the crotch, through the skirt of a woman the thug is holding hostage.

Here’s the ED-209 malfunction scene.

I can’t explain why, but for some reason I love this brief clip of a lecherous guy saying “I’d buy that for a dollar.”

And here’s a video of little-known facts about the movie.  I bet you didn’t realize how much of the movie actually has Robocop in his underwear.



One of the better spoof movies, back in an era where spoof movies had actual jokes that connected to the source material rather than modern spoofs which just cram in a bunch of random references.

A lot of the jokes don’t hold up, and Mel Brooks had an unfortunate tendency to overexplain the punchlines.  For example:

But a much of the humor does still work, and this is certainly a must-see for any Star Wars or late 70s/early 80s sci-fi fan. Here are some better scenes:


The Untouchables

I don’t have much to say about this, and would probably put it in “Other Fond Memories,” except that I want to post the baby carriage scene.


Wall Street

Wall Street is a message movie that ends up enduring for the exact opposite of what Oliver Stone intended.  It’s supposed to be a critique of greed-driven commerce, and Gordon Gecko is supposed to be the bad guy.

But as a writer, it is important to make villains have real reasons for their actions, rather than just wallowing in their own crapulence.  (At least, if you’re making a serious/smart movie.  You can get away with cartoonish villains in a fun dumb movie.)  Every bad guy ought to believe that he’s the hero of his own movie.

Stone and co-writer Stanley Weiser, along with Michael Douglas’s performance, did too good a job of this.  Generations of stock brokers and high-finance people went into that industry because they saw the “Greed is good” speech, and said to themselves, “He makes a good point.  I want to be like him.”

Other Notable Films

The Running Man

The second silly action movie from 1987 to feature two future governors.  This isn’t as popular as it once was.  But it’s interesting for its prescience in spoofing reality TV, a genre that wouldn’t become popular for another 15 years.

It also has a bunch of ridiculous over-the-top death scenes, that are far more creative than you typically see today.

– – – – –

Do you disagree with any of these choices, or think that I missed something?  Leave a comment below.


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