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10 Best Movies of 1987

Updated on May 18, 2016

When it comes to movies the class of 1987 was a blockbuster. From cult classics, to movies that launched iconic franchises, 1987 was definitely an awesome year to head to the theater. Here now is my list of the 10 Best Movies of 1987.

*** NOTE***

Before the hate mail and the flaming starts, these movies are IN NO PARTICULAR ORDER! There are simply too many variables to try and rank these movies in any coherent format, so I’m just presenting them to you in a randomized order. Enjoy!

When will then be now?


Comedy icon Mel Brooks takes on science fiction, what more do I have to say. This comical trek through the stars pokes fun the entire genre, but it has its sights set firmly on Star Wars. Following the adventures of Capt. Lone Star (Bill Pullman) and his faithful sidekick Barf (John Candy), this movie has everything that you would expect from a Mel Brooks movie. Not only is this one of my favorite Mel Brooks movies, it’s one of my favorite movies of all time.

And whats your name?

The Princess Bride

Do you really need me to give you a rundown of arguably one of the largest cult classics since Rocky Horror? “As you wish”. This fantasy adventure, narrated by Peter Faulk, is one of the most quoted movies of the 80s. Not only did it launch the careers of Cary Elwes and Robin Wright, it also gave us one of the most memorable introductions in movie history: “Hello. My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die”.

Full Metal Jacket

Full Metal Jacket

Featuring one of the most accurate portrayals of boot camp that I’ve ever seen in a movie, this Vietnam era military flick follows Matthew Modine (a.k.a. Pvt. Joker) during his time at Parris Island, and then in Vietnam. This movie also features memorable performances by R Lee Emery (Drill Sgt. Hartman), and Law and Order: Criminal Intent star Vincent D'Onofrio

Arnold Hates Re-Runs

The Running Man

the first of two Schwarzenegger movies on this list, this movie features Arnold as Ben Richards, the so-called Butcher of Bakersfield. Set in a future where executions are carried out in game show fashion (in front of a live studio audience no less). In fact, they even have real life game show host Richard Dawson (The Family Feud) playing host Damon Killian. Another instant Schwarzenegger classic, the movie also stars Predator co-star, and fellow future Governor Jessie Ventura.


Launching one of the most popular Sci-Fi franchises of all time, Predator tells the story of a commando team sent on a rescue mission in South America. Sounds easy for action movie heavy weights like Arnold Schwarzenegger, Carl Weathers, and Jessie “The Body” Venture, the only catch is an alien killing machine stalking their every move. Just think, if it wasn’t for this film, we never would have had Alien Vs. Predator.

Where Not To Put Baby?

Dirty Dancing

The coming of age story of Francis “Baby” Houseman and bad boy dance instructor Johnny Castle reunites Jennifer Grey and Patrick Swayze (who stared together in 1984’s Red Dawn), and taught us that "Nobody puts Baby in a corner".

As hard as it is to believe now, 25 years later, Dirty Dancing wasn’t the huge blockbuster most people seem to remember it as. In fact the film commonly known as “The Godfather for girls”, wasn’t even in the top 10 for highest grossing films that year. However it was on a different front that Dirty Dancing would earn its place in film history, as Dirty Dancing was the first Home Video to sell over 1 Million copies, effectively putting the nail in the coffin for Beta (kids, ask your parents).

The Chicago Way

The Untouchables

Treasury Agent Eliot Ness comes to Chicago during the height of prohibition to take on mob boss Al Capone. That in and of itself sounds like the premise of a great movie, however when you consider that it’s based on the real life events of Agent Ness (yes, he was a real person), it becomes even more awesome.

Add in Sean Connery and Robert De Niro, and you have a certified classic. This film also gave us one of the best lines in movie history: “He pulls a knife, you pull a gun. He sends one of yours to the hospital; you send one of his to the morgue”.

"You Jump, I Jump"

Lethal Weapon

The movie that launched one of the most popular franchises in movie history, and gave us, quite possibly, the greatest one-liner in history (“I’m too old for this shit”), Lethal Weapon set the standard for the “buddy cop” pic. It was one of the highest grossing films of 1987, bringing in over $120 Million at the Box Office, that would be almost $250 Million today.

The Lost Boys Trailer

The Lost Boys

Before vampires became sparkly emo kids with whiny girlfriends and over moussed hair, they used to be pretty bad ass. Staring Keifer Sutherland, Jason Patrick, Jami Gertz, and of course, the Coreys (Feldman and Haim), The Lost Boys is another cult classic that is a must own for anyone who grew up in the 80s.

Fatal Attraction Trailer

Fatal Attraction

The movie that scared the living hell out of married men everywhere. Glenn Close and Michael Douglas star in this cautionary tale about a one night stand that turns into a living hell for married man Dan Gallagher, when his fling Alex Forrest simply “won’t be ignored”.

The Mel Brooks Classic: "Spaceballs"

How Much Do You Know About The 10 Best?

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    • Billy Hicks profile image

      Billy Hicks 5 years ago

      @Diana Lee, Thanks for stopping by, I'm glad you liked the article.

      If you're a fan of Dirty Dancing, then I'm sorry to say, there is a remake coming out next year. Derek Hough (of Dancing with the Stars) is slated to play Johnny, and Lea Michelle (Rachel from Glee) is playing Baby.

      Apparently, nothing in Hollywood is sacred.

    • Diana Lee profile image

      Diana L Pierce 5 years ago from Potter County, Pa.

      This is a good selection. I love Dirty Dancing and have watched it at least a hundred times. Lost Boys keeps you on the edge of your seat. I'm not in to vampire movies, but I like this one. Spaceballs is very entertaining. The action packed adventures in the rest of these films also make for good viewing. 1987 was a good year. Voted up.

    • Billy Hicks profile image

      Billy Hicks 5 years ago

      @prairieprincess I loved Princess Bride when I was a kid. It's been fun letting my kids watch it and fall in love with those characters.

    • prairieprincess profile image

      Sharilee Swaity 5 years ago from Canada

      Great picks! I loved Princess Bride. Running Man was so frightening and Fatal Attraction gave me goosebumps. It was good year for movies.

    • Billy Hicks profile image

      Billy Hicks 5 years ago

      @alipuckett '87 was an awesome year for movies. Some other "Top Movies of 87" that didn't make this list; Good Morning Vietnam, Wall Street, Overboard, The Witches of Eastwick, Moonstruck, Over The Top.

    • alipuckett profile image

      alipuckett 5 years ago

      Oooh! I never realized that 1987 was such an amazing year for film. Spaceballs and The Princess Bride are long time favorites of mine. Only with in the last year did I break down and finally see Fatal Attraction. It was terrifying! Great hub!

    • Billy Hicks profile image

      Billy Hicks 5 years ago

      @healthyrich2011 I'm a huge movie lover. Sometimes it's almost sad how much time I've spent over the years watching movies, lol.

      @Steve Lensman Robocop was on the list when it was a top 25 list, but HubPages had a problem with all of the links, and it was taking forever to load, so I had to cut it down to a top 10.

      @tillsontitan "To Have and Have Not" is my favorite movie of all time actually. I'm glad you liked the quiz, I had a blast making it.

    • Billy Hicks profile image

      Billy Hicks 5 years ago

      I'm glad you liked it. The Princess Bride is one of those movies that a lot of people have never heard of, but then when they see it, a lot of references in other movies start to make sense.

    • tillsontitan profile image

      Mary Craig 5 years ago from New York

      You sometimes forget what great movies were made AFTER 1947 :) Seriously these were great picks of great movies. Your summaries are accurate and interesting. The videos were great picks AND your test taking widget was the bomb! Loved this and voted it up and interesting as well as SHARED!

    • Steve Lensman profile image

      Steve Lensman 5 years ago from London, England

      Nice. A good list of films from 1987. I bought them all on DVD. My favourite from that group is probably Predator, though The Untouchables is pretty high up too.

      A big favourite of mine missing from your list is... Robocop! A little violent but a fantastic movie.

      Voted Up and Interesting.

    • healthyrich2011 profile image

      healthyrich2011 5 years ago from Chiangmai, Thailand

      Oh, you are movie lover :) Thanks for an interesting hub.

    • jacqui2011 profile image

      jacqui2011 5 years ago from Norfolk, UK

      1987 sure was a great year for movies. I loved watching most of these. You have produced a great list. The only one that I haven't seen is The Princess Bride. Well written and enjoyable hub. Voted up - interesting/useful.