The Best ’80s Movies On Netflix

Grab your leg warmers and put on your Ray-Bans; Netflix UK has a number of terrific ’80s movies perfect for a nostalgic journey back to the recent past. From iconic romantic comedies to seminal Oscar winning dramas, here are some of the best ’80s movies on the streaming service that you should check out:

Ferris Bueller’s Day Off

John Hughes’ most famous movie is a celebration of the carefree, rebelliousness of youth. Matthew Broderick stars as the eponymous Ferris Bueller who, in wild and whimsical fashion, spends the day deceiving the adults around him to flunk a day off school. Even for audiences in the 21st century, it still manages to define being a teenager.

The Purple Rose Of Cairo

Netflix has a number of Woody Allen movies in its library including Radio Days, Hannah And Her Sisters and Bananas. However, none of them come close to the greatness of The Purple Rose Of Cairo, one of the best films he has ever made. It is a whimsical story about the escapism that cinema provides in which Mia Farrow plays an unhappy woman whose favourite movie star, performed by Jeff Daniels, literally escapes from the screen and walks into her real life.


This wacky and absurdist parody of disaster movies, in which a case of food poisoning leaves the crew of a commercial aircraft sick and an ex-combat pilot must save the day, is surely one of the funniest movies of all time. And don’t call it Shirley. The belly-laughter inducing gags arrive at such a rapid rate that you’ll still be discovering lines that you missed on repeated viewings.

Cinema Paradiso

This epic Italian dramedy is one of the most celebrated foreign language movies of all time. It follows a filmmaker who reflects on his childhood memories, specifically the friendship he had with his village’s movie projectionist and the first girl he fell in love with. It is humorous, joyful, and when the iconic ‘montages of kisses’ scene arrives at the finale – one of the most beautiful endings in cinema history – we guarantee you will be wiping tears from your eyes.

Pretty In Pink

Celebrating its 30th anniversary this year, Pretty In Pink is a seminal romantic comedy from the 1980s scripted by John Hughes and starring members of what would be known as The Brat Pack. Molly Ringwald stars as Andie who is torn by her affections for childhood sweetheart Duckie and the rich and popular Blane.

Sex, Lies And Videotape

Steven Soderbergh is hailed as one of the filmmakers to kick off the ’90s independent filmmaking movement with Sex, Lies And Videotape. An important piece of movie history, the drama inspired everyone from Richard Linklater and Kevin Smith to Quentin Tarantino. It portrays the complex, tangled sex lives of four men and women, featuring performances by James Spader and Andie MacDowell.

Say Anything

If there is a defining image of 1980s cinema, it might just be John Cusack standing outside Ione Skye’s window with a boombox playing In Your Eyes. It comes from the film Say Anything by Cameron Crowe in which Cusack plays a lazy high schooler in love with the brightest student in his class. It’s heartfelt, it’s romantic and it’s impossible not to love any film that uses a ‘So’ era Peter Gabriel song as its centrepiece.

Wall Street

Michael Douglas won an Oscar for his performance as Gordon Gekko, the New York broker who insists that greed is good. Oliver Stone’s satire of Wall Street capitalism is still relevant almost 30 years on. Perhaps, after the events of 2008, it is even more relevant than it has ever been.

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