10 Best 80s Movies on Netflix

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January 3, 2024

Nostalgia for the golden days and a love for all things vintage have been trending lately, especially for 2023. The ’80s, in particular, are making a strong comeback. Many adults who grew up in that era are fondly reminiscing about their youth. The 1980s were marked by extravagance, boldness, and fearlessness, a time when individuality was celebrated – a sentiment that still resonates with Generation Z today.

The ’80s had a unique aesthetic, which is equally true for the movies from that era. If you’re looking to relive those highlights, alongside adopting ’80s fashion, you can do so by watching films. Here, we’ve compiled a list of the top 10 best ’80s movies on Netflix, perfect for satisfying your nostalgia. These classics are also must-watch for any movie fans.

The Breakfast Club (1985)

  • Runtime: 1h37m
  • Rating: R
  • Genre: Comedy, Drama
  • Director: John Hughes
  • Cast: Emilio Estevez, Anthony Michael Hall, Judd Nelson, Molly Ringwald, Ally Sheedy

  • IMDb Rating: 7.8/10
  • Rotten Tomatoes: 89% Tomatometer; 92% Audience Score

The athlete, the brain, the bully, the princess, and the loner break through the social barriers of high school during a Saturday in detention and discover how they have a great deal more in common than they thought. Each has a chance to tell his or her story, making the others see them a little differently — and when the day ends, they question whether school will ever be the same.

There’s no other film that better captures and enhances the teenage experience of the 1980s than John Hughes’ iconic high school dramedy. Often regarded as the archetype for coming-of-age movies, The Breakfast Club introduced the Brat Pack, a group of attractive young actors who starred in similar ’80s movies. This movie breaks the characters out of their simplified stereotypes to explore the real individuals hidden beneath societal perceptions and reminds us that we are more than the labels others place on us.

Ferris Bueller’s Day Off (1986)

  • Runtime: 1h43m
  • Rating: PG-13
  • Genre: Comedy, Teen Movies
  • Director:  John Hughes
  • Cast: Matthew Broderick, Alan Ruck, Mia Sara

  • IMDb Rating: 7.8/10
  • Rotten Tomatoes: 82% Tomatometer; 92% Audience Score

Ferris Bueller has an uncanny skill at cutting classes and getting away with it. Intending to make one last duck-out before graduation, Ferris calls in sick, “borrows” a Ferrari and embarks on a one-day journey through the streets of Chicago. On Ferris’ trail is high school principal Rooney, determined to catch him in the act.

Another classic from John Hughes, this film became one of the highest-grossing movies of the year. What sets this movie apart is its charming approach of breaking the fourth wall to allow viewers to hear Ferris’ thoughts. Among all of Hughes’ teen-centric movies set in the Chicago area over the span of a decade, this particular film has undoubtedly endured the best and remains enjoyable even today.

Stand By Me (1986)

Please note that this movie is unavailable with an ad-supported plan on Netflix due to licensing restrictions. However, you can enjoy it with the ad-free and Premium plans.

  • Runtime:  1h28m
  • Rating: R
  • Genre:  Adventure, Comedy, Drama, Movies Based on Books
  • Director:  Rob Reiner
  • Cast:  Wil Wheaton, River Phoenix, Corey Feldman, Jerry O’Connell

  • IMDb Rating: 8.1/10
  • Rotten Tomatoes: 92% Tomatometer; 94% Audience Score

After learning that a stranger has been accidentally killed near their rural homes, four Oregon boys decide to go see the body. On the way, they encounter a mean junk man and a marsh full of leeches, as they also learn more about one another and their very different home lives. Just a lark at first, the boys’ adventure evolves into a defining event in their lives.

Considered one of the best “kids-on-an-adventure” movies, this film stands out because it delves deep into each of the boys’ personal struggles, tackling some weighty adult themes, yet always returning to the enduring strength of their friendship that carries the story. The movie is wise and nostalgic with the trials and tribulations of growing up. It stirs memories, especially if you’ve experienced childhood friendships evolving over time. “I never had friends later on like the ones I had when I was twelve.” Stand by Me is a simple yet powerful film that resonates long after.

Midnight Run (1988)

  • Runtime: 2h6m
  • Rating: R
  • Genre: Comedy, Action & Adventure, Crime
  • Director: Martin Brest
  • Cast: Robert De Niro, Charles Grodin, Yaphet Kotto
  • IMDb Rating: 7.5/10
  • Rotten Tomatoes: 95% Tomatometer; 87% Audience Score

When Eddie Moscone hires tight-lipped bounty hunter Jack Walsh to locate a mob accountant named “The Duke” and bring him to L.A., Eddie tells Jack that the job will be simple, or a “midnight run.” But when Jack finds The Duke, the FBI, and the mob are anxious to get their hands on him. In a cross-country chase, Jack must evade the authorities, hide from the mob, and prevent The Duke’s erratic personality from driving him mad.

A classic buddy movie formula is taken to new heights by exceptional performances. Driven by the captivatingly antagonistic chemistry between Robert De Niro and Charles Grodin, Midnight Run stands out as an unusually delightful odd-couple comedy filled with thrilling action sequences. This film’s clever, understated humor places a strong emphasis on character development, ensuring that the audience remains engaged, amused, and enthralled from start to finish.

Field of Dreams (1989)

  • Runtime: 1h45m
  • Rating: PG
  • Genre: Drama, Family, Fantasy, Sports, Tearjeker Movies
  • Director: Phil Alden Robinson
  • Cast: Kevin Costner, James Earl Jones, Ray Liotta

  • IMDb Rating: 7.5/10
  • Rotten Tomatoes: 88% Tomatometer; 86% Audience Score

A mysterious voice encourages an Iowa farmer to build a baseball diamond in his cornfield, where a ghostly team of legends comes out to play ball.  But, as Ray learns, this field of dreams is about much more than bringing former baseball greats out to play.

Field of Dreams is sentimental in the best way, blending elements of a fairy tale, baseball, and family togetherness. This tale is not just about a passion for baseball but also the drive to make the most of our one precious life, despiting the skepticism of others. The film unfolds at a deliberate pace, drawing viewers in with its steadily building drama. If you’re someone who views each at-bat as a fresh opportunity and believes that life can be filled with goodness and miracles, then this classic baseball story is a must-see.

Steel Magnolias (1989)

Please note that this movie is unavailable with an ad-supported plan on Netflix due to licensing restrictions. However, you can enjoy it with the ad-free and Premium plans.

  • Runtime: 1h 58m
  • Rating: PG
  • Genre: Comedy, Drama
  • Director:  Herbert Ross
  • Cast:  Sally Field, Dolly Parton, Shirley MacLaine, Julia Roberts, Daryl Hannah, Olympia Dukakis

  • IMDb Rating: 7.3/10
  • Rotten Tomatoes: 67% Tomatometer; 89% Audience Score

Six women in a small Southern town share gossip and solve problems at the local beauty parlor, anchoring each other through life’s ups and downs. Time passes, and the women and their friends encounter tragedy and good fortune, growing stronger and closer in the process.

Based on a stage play by Robert Harling, Steel Magnolias is a heartfelt tale that explores the themes of friendship, love, marriage, parenthood, illness, and the abrupt endings of life. While the film is often credited with catapulting Julia Roberts into stardom, it’s Sally Field’s performance that truly shines. Steel Magnolias is undeniably a compassionate film, offering a humble and warm-hearted testament to the enduring strength of female friendships.

Coming to America (1988)

  • Runtime: 1h 57m
  • Rating: R
  • Genre: Comedy, Romantic Movies
  • Director: John Landis
  • Cast: Eddie Murphy, Paul Bates, Garcelle Beauvais

  • IMDb Rating: 7.1/10
  • Rotten Tomatoes: 73% Tomatometer; 85% Audience Score

Prince Akeem is the prince of a wealthy African country and wants nothing, except a wife who will love him in spite of his title. To escape an arranged marriage, Akeem flees to America accompanied by his persnickety sidekick, Semmi, to find his queen. Disguised as a foreign student working in fast food, he romances Lisa but struggles with revealing his true identity to her and his marital intentions to his king father.

Charmingly old-school in many aspects, yet still full of memorable quotes, this film combines humor with unwavering dedication to its central character’s heartfelt mission. It’s a surprisingly sweet and well-balanced romantic comedy. Upon its release, it stood out as a unique film featuring a broad, all-black cast in its time. Eddie Murphy delivers one of his most satisfying performances, making every moment of this classic movie thoroughly enjoyable.

Uncle Buck (1989)

  • Runtime: 1h39m
  • Rating: PG
  • Genre: Comedy
  • Director: John Hughes
  • Cast: John Candy, Macaulay Culkin, Jean Louisa Kelly

  • IMDb Rating: 7.1/10
  • Rotten Tomatoes: 62% Tomatometer; 77% Audience Score

When Cindy and her husband, Bob, have to leave town for a family emergency, there is only one person available to babysit for their three kids: Bob’s lazy, carefree brother, Buck. While he immediately gets along with the two younger children, Buck must change his bachelor lifestyle if he wants to be a responsible caregiver for the angst-filled teenager, Tia.

This movie is delightful and heartwarming to watch every time! It falls into the category of warm, funny films centered around relationships with kids, offering straightforward humor and a feel-good conclusion. John Candy’s great comedic timing and charismatic performance steal the spotlight, while the talented young actors portraying the children infuse depth and relatability into their characters. It’s the film that introduced most Americans to the endearing charm of young Macaulay Culkin before Home Alone. It follows the classic ’80s formula, complete with a generous dose of “all-American” cheese.

Fast Times at Ridgemont High (1982)

  • Runtime: 1h29m
  • Rating: R
  • Genre: Comedy, Drama, Movies Based on Books
  • Director: Amy Heckerling
  • Cast: Sean Penn, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Judge Reinhold 

  • IMDb Rating: 7.1/10
  • Rotten Tomatoes: 78% Tomatometer; 80% Audience Score

A group of teens comes of age in Southern California as they grapple with school, part-time jobs, relationships, insecurities, and the realities of sex.

Fast Times at Ridgemont High is famous not just for Sean Penn’s iconic performance but also for its authentic portrayal of school, work, and teenage life. It’s among the best in a genre known for its boldness and effectively captures the style and attitudes of the ’80s. This film brilliantly, humorously, and sometimes provocatively explores teenage life in the early 1980s. In many respects, it defined a generation of young Americans excited about the future.

Conan the Barbarian (1982)

  • Runtime: 2h6m
  • Rating: R
  • Genre:  Adventure, Action, Fantasy, Movies Based on Books
  • Director: John Milius
  • Cast: Arnold Schwarzenegger, James Earl Jones, Max von Sydow

  • IMDb Rating: 6.9/10
  • Rotten Tomatoes: 67% Tomatometer; 74% Audience Score

Orphaned boy Conan is enslaved after his village is destroyed by the forces of vicious necromancer Thulsa Doom, and is compelled to push “The Wheel of Pain” for many years. Once he reaches adulthood, Conan sets off across the prehistoric landscape of the Hyborian Age in search of the man who killed his family and stole his father’s sword. With beautiful warrior Valeria and archer Subotai, he faces a supernatural evil.

Conan the Barbarian is undeniably the quintessential 1980s fantasy epic, a spectacular sword-and-sorcery adventure. It’s the film that indisputably forged the legend of Austrian muscleman Arnold Schwarzenegger, paving the way for iconic roles like the Terminator. While Conan himself is a somewhat stoic figure motivated by vengeance, what truly enriches the story is the vibrant characters around him. Whether it’s the despicable snake priest Thulsa Doom or the theatrical presence of Max von Sydow, these supporting characters breathe life into the immersive world of Conan.

How to download and save Netflix 80s movies to MP4?

Netflix downloads are limited to subscribers of ad-free plans, and they can only be downloaded on specific devices from the Netflix app. These downloads also have expiration dates and access restrictions. Some titles expire 48 hours after you first press play.

However, if you’re looking to download ’80s movies from Netflix with an ad-supported membership or watch them offline on other devices you prefer, you can use Pazu Netflix Video Downloader.

Pazu Netflix Video Downloader is a desktop program for Netflix users to download Netflix videos without the Netflix app. It can bypass the DRM from Netflix and download movies and TV shows from Netflix to MP4 and MKV formats. The converted files can be preserved in high quality as 1080p after a fast download. Also, subtitles and audio tracks can be kept 100% the same as the original video. Moreover, it eliminates all Netflix download limitations, such as expiration issues, device quantity limits, etc.

With Pazu Netflix Video Downloader, you can enjoy your favorite ’80s movies from Netflix offline, even with an ad-supported membership, and play them on your Mac or TV without any hassle.

Netflix video downloader

Netflix Video Downloader

Download Netflix movies & TV shows to MP4 with HD quality. 

  • Download movies & TV shows from Netflix.
  • Download videos in 1080P.
  • Preserve audio tracks and subtitles.
  • Fast downloading speed.

Step 1. Launch Pazu Netflix Video Downloader

Download, install, and launch Pazu Netflix Video Downloader on your Mac or Windows. Log in to your Netflix account.

Click the key icon and enter your registration code to unlock the full version of the downloader if you have purchased a registration. If you haven’t, go ahead with the free trial version.

Netflix video downloader

Step 2. Add Netflix movies/TV shows

Search for a show or movie you want to download from Netflix.

add movies or shows

Step 3. Choose video format/quality

Click the gear icon on the top right corner to choose the video formats and settings such as:

  • Video format: MP4 or MKV
  • Video codec: H264 or H265
  • Audio language: English, French, German, Japanese, Spanish, Chinese
  • Subtitle language: English, French, German, Japanese, Spanish, Chinese
video settings

Step 4. Start to Download Netflix videos

Click the Download icon on the right of the title you want to download.

As you can see from the screenshot, all episodes are checked by default. Uncheck those episodes you don’t want to download if there are any.

select episodes

You can also click the three lines and gear icon to choose audio/subtitle languages for each episode. To close the window, click the OK button.

episode settings

Click the Download button on the bottom right corner. The downloading begins.

download netflix videos

After downloading, click History and find the video in MP4 format. You can now transfer the downloaded videos and watch them whenever you want.