Going to the movies was a big deal in the 80s. It was the decade before the internet arrived, before even the DVD, and people didn’t have as many entertainment options as they do today. If you grew up in the 80s you’ll remember great movies like “Back to the Future,” “Ghostbusters,” and “Raiders of the Lost Ark.” However, there are some movies that were so awful you’ll probably remember them too.
Horror was a popular genre in the 80s, but some of the horror movies that came out then were frighteningly bad. Almost half the entries on our list of bad movies from the 80s are horror movies, but several of them are sequels and they often disappoint. You probably enjoyed “Halloween” and “Poltergeist,” but what about “Halloween II” and “Poltergeist III”? (For the full list see the 50 worst movie sequels ever made.)
Even great directors can make bad movies and great actors can be in them. William Friedkin directed the 70s classics “The French Connection” and “The Exorcist.” But in the 80s he gave us “Cruising.” And it even starred Al Pacino, who’s probably on a lot of best actor lists. John Milius wrote “Apocalypse Now” in the 70s, but went on to direct “Red Dawn.” And it starred some of the hottest actors of the decade, including Patrick Swayze and Charlie Sheen. And even if you thought it was so bad you wanted to forget it, you got a reminder when it was remade in 2012.
To determine the 15 worst movies you’ll remember if you grew up in the 80s, 24/7 Tempo reviewed data from the Internet Movie Database and Rotten Tomatoes. We created an index based on the average critic rating from Rotten Tomatoes, the average audience rating from Rotten Tomatoes, and the average user rating from IMDb (IMDb). We only considered feature films with at least 5,000 Rotten Tomatoes audience reviews, 10 Rotten Tomatoes critic reviews, and 10,000 IMDb user reviews. All data is for the most recent period available. Data was collected February 2021.