Kinker Korner’s Top 31 Movies Of 1983 NSFW

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Well, I wasn’t able to get up to 35 again as I hadn’t actually seen a whole load of movies from this year. Usually I’m having to cut a whole load of good movies to keep it at 35 but hey ho there’s still plenty to enjoy here. Let’s crack on and see what made it.

 

31. Sudden Impact

The fourth entry in the Dirty Harry series isn’t the best one but it certainly has the most famous line. “Go ahead , make my day” is one of film’s most famous lines of all time and it came from this entertaining but run of the mill action revenge flick. Harry seeks vengeance for a gang rape victim. It was directed by Clint Eastwood who now speaks to chairs.

Best Bit- Coffee break

 

30. Superman 3

A universally panned entry into the franchise for it’s campy and comedic tone with Richard Pryor playing a supporting role. If I loved Superman and had been waiting anxiously for it’s release then yea I’d have been disappointed but I can give or take the character so it was just another movie to me going into it and I enjoyed it for what it was.

Best Bit- Evil Supes

 

29.Twilight Zone: The Movie

An anthology horror that will forever by mired by the careless actions of director John Landis that lead to the death of star Vic Morrow and two child actors who were hired illegally, overworked and killed by a crashed helicopter. There are several long essays and articles about the incident and how it led to safer working conditions in Hollywood, it’s really interesting stuff. All that aside I’m judging this is a movie only and it’s pretty good all in all. There are segments directed by Landis, Spielberg, Joe Dante and George Miller that are based on the the tv shows from the 60s.

Best Bit- It’s A Good Life

 

28. Flashdance

One of the most popular films of the year and probably one of the most famous dance scenes of all time (behind Spider-man 3 of course) that Geri Halliwell hilariously did a video homage too and needed stunt dancers because she couldn’t do one of the two parts of her job as singer/dancer. It’s one of those “you can do anything” aspirational movies and it’s fine if a little light on substance. Jennifer Beals is super cute though….Oh one more thing, David Cronenberg was asked to direct this….what the hell were they thinking?. The final dance would have had her melting and turn into a wasp or something…..actually I’m all for that.

Best Bit- Water dance

 

 

27. Vigilante

A violent ….vigilante movie starring the awesome Robert Forster and in the vein of flicks like Death Wish . It’s directed by William Lustig who made Maniac and Maniac Cop (noticing a theme here). Wee bit of trivia for fellow boxing fans, Lustig is the nephew of Jake Lamotta who passed away the day before I wrote this entry.

Best Bit-Prison release

 

26. National Lampoon’s Vacation

It’s always painful for me to give someone as thoroughly unlikable as Chevy Chase props but this is probably his best movie and it’s a funny one. Comedy snobs often point to this Harold Ramis classic as one of the best comedy movies ever made and obviously while I don’t agree I still really enjoyed it. It helps that it’s written by the era defining John Hughes. Great poster by Boris Vellejo too. It recently got a rather needless remake starring the infinitely more likeable Ed Helms.

Best Bit- Walley World

 

 

25. Escape From The Bronx

One of those movies like “The Room” (only much better) that have become cult classics for being utterly atrocious but somehow amazingly entertaining. It’s inclusion on an episode of Mystery Science Theater 3000 helped it reach a bigger audience (including me) and this Italian made gang movie is an absolute blast to sit and watch with friends.

Best Bit- Helmet smash

 

24. Something Wicked This Way Comes

A movie based on the Ray Bradbury novel of the same name about a strange carnival that rides into a small town with disturbing things happening to the population. About 15 years later Wishmaster would totally rip it off but make it much gorier as this film was produced by Disney and aimed at a younger audience. It’s infamous for it’s numerous production problems and nightmarish process.

Best Bit- Spider scene

 

23. The King Of Comedy

In an attempt to move away from type, Martin Scorsese tried his hand at dark comedy and brought along his fun time pal Rob De Niro who I think everyone looks to when they need a giggle. It was a big box office flop but it’s actually pretty good and satirizes celebrity worship which is now more relevant than ever as we continue to fall down the never ending well of cultural leprosy , bits of our soul rotting away and falling off as we kneel at the altar of lifeless plastic husks in the dire hope that one day we too can be famous and rich for absolutely nothing.

Best Bit- The ending

 

22. Gorky Park

I always whistle that Scorpions song whenever I hear the title. An intelligent and tense thriller, well acted and nihilistically bleak with an interesting setting in Russia. Pretty much everyone in the ensemble cast delivers a strong performance from Brian Dennehy to William Hurt.

Best Bit- Locker room chat

 

21. The Wind In The Willows

A stop motion adaptation of the classic Kenneth Graheme children’s story of the same name. This was often on tv when I was a kid and apart from the nightmare inducing stop motion it’s a charming and engrossing tale. This led to a tv series that came out a year after the movie such was the response and success of this adaptation starring David Jason.

Best Bit- Eating the berries

 

20. Sleepaway Camp

Another in the long list of slasher knock offs that are on these lists and this one is one of the more famous ones mainly due to it’s shocking and hilariously executed twist ending. It’s a cult classic in the slasher field and in a genre where most movies get lost in the sea of copycats it manages to stand out and didn’t get lost in the shuffle. Funny how these things happen sometimes.

Best Bit- The ending

 

19. Cujo

I love dogs so a movie all about dogs is right up my st…..oh sweet baby Jesus what is that thing?!!! FUUUUUUUUU!!!. Based on Stephen King’s novel of the same name, this horror tale about a rabid dog who goes proper mental and starts attacking and trapping his family. Still…..he’s cute isn’t he?. King, who is famously critical of many movie adaptations of his work actually loved this one and apparently there’s a remake coming out at some point.

Best Bit- Trapped in the car

 

18. Strange Brew

The most popular characters on the great Canadian comedy sketch show SCTV, Bob and Doug McKenzie got their own movie with Rick Moranis and Dave Thomas recreating their characters. It’s a lot of fun but as with many movies that are made from popular sketches it doesn’t translate quite as well to the big screen. Still, there are plenty of laughs to be had with the likeable duo.

Best Bit- The sci fi project

 

17. Pieces

Another slasher that stands out due to it’s insanely over the top splatterpunk gore as a murderer is picking off students on a college campus and using parts of their bodies as part of a human jigsaw puzzle. Good times!. It attracted loads of hysterical controversy as you’d expect It’s terrible……in the best way possible.

Best Bit- Shower time

 

16. Born In Flames

An important, under appreciated and sadly forgotten feminist sci fi flick shot in the form of a documentary and exploring class, race, gender and looks at different forms of activism. The movie looks at oppression of groups that still suffer today despite ongoing efforts and campaigns having educated more people and is as important today as it was then. It was much braver back in 1983 though as there was far less compassion and understanding for their plight and even though there is still awful oppression of groups like the LGBT community, a movie like this would be celebrated widely today. Back then…..not so much, it was a much smaller group that appreciated it. Proper punk rock film making sticking two fingers up to the establishment.

Best Bit- Honey and Isabel team up

 

15. Christine

Horror movie maestro John Carpenter took on horror novel maestro Stephen King’s Christine, a story about an evil Plymouth Fury car that emotionally seduces it’s new owner and kills anyone that gets between them. Absolutely bonkers but in such a fun way. It’s not particularly scary at all but it has a cool 50s vibe and enjoyable characters for the most part.

Best Bit- The alley chase

 

14. The Outsiders

I feel that if I had seen this when I was young it would have placed higher but I saw it as an adult and still thoroughly enjoyed it. It just grabs me as one of those movies that you would adore as a young teen and many 90s punk bands referenced the movie so it pointed me towards it. It’s a coming of age drama staring a whole host of young actors that would go on to become huge stars such as Emilio Estevez, Rob Lowe, Matt Dillon and more with direction coming from Francis Ford Copella. Stay gold Ponyboy.

Best Bit- The rumble

 

13. Shaolin And Wu Tang

WU TANG CLAN AINT NUTTIN’ TO FU…..ahem wrong Wu Tang sorry. This Gordon Liu kung fu flick is about the two titular martial arts schools and their rivalry. This was the film that the legendary rap group earlier mentioned got their name as an ode to their obsession with watching kung fu movies as kids.

Best Bit- Final fight

 

12. Psycho 2

After the initial outcry of heresy for making a sequel to the Alfred Hitchock classic died down people started to respect the work that directer Richard Franklin did and for Anthony Perkins revising his role as Norman Bates. While obviously nowhere near the quality of the original that doesn’t mean it’s not good because there aren’t many horror movies better than the original. Just enjoy it for what it is, a respectful follow up to the Bates story.

Best Bit- Bop on the head

 

 

11. The Dead Zone

The third and final Stephen King adaptation on this year’s list. It just shows how insanely hot King was at the time with nearly everything he was churning out was getting picked up by movie studios as anything with his name on it garnered interest. This one is directed by the great Canadian director David Cronenberg and stars Christopher Walken as a man who awakens from a coma with psychic powers. An incredibly slept on King adaptation.

Best Bit- The hockey team

 

10. The Raccoons And The Lost Star

I think I wore this vhs out when I was a kid I loved it that much. From the great music to the charming animation and storytelling, The Raccoons were just great and this movie¬† just connected with me in a big way. I would watch it with my mum who must have been sick to death of it but still put up with it. This and the two specials preceding it was something of a trial run because it aired before the series had even started and it’s positive reception gave the series the go ahead.

Best Bit- The ending

 

9.Monty Python’s The Meaning Of Life

I remember way back when I was going through a Monty Python phase I was always told to leave this until last as it wasn’t nearly as good as the series or the other two movies but I really liked it. It’s got that irreverent, outside the box humour that was years ahead of it’s time when they started and still holds up today. Not every joke hits with me but such is the nature of this kind of bombardment style comedy where there is so much stuff thrown at the wall. It;’s the last movie to star the original troupe.

Best Bit- The middle of the film

 

8. Terms Of Endearment

The brilliant James L. Brooks just has an unbelievable knack of nailing the tricky combination of sentimentality, comedy and drama. So few movies are able to nail all aspects of the comedy drama genre but he has it down. It’s a beautiful movie that focuses on the relationship between a mother and daughter over the space of 30 years. Simple and beautiful.

Best Bit- Goodbye Emma

 

7. Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence

David Bowie’s best movie….I said it….it’s better than Labyrinth, it’s better than The Man Who Fell To Earth and it had Beat Takeshi in it so it automatically makes it awesome. Ryuichi Sakamoto’s (who also stars) beautiful score underlines the emotional performances from the bang on form cast in this drama about a Japanese prisoner of war camp and the relationships between the captors and prisoners within.

Best Bit- Visiting Sgt Hara

 

6. Trading Places

A brilliant, high concept adult comedy directed by John Landis and starring Eddie Murphy and Dan Aykroyd.¬† A high powered business man and a homeless hustler have their lives traded as part of an elaborate bet between elite businessmen and the reactions of both men are hilarious. It’s one of those movies that you sit and think “what would I do in that situation”. It’s so much fun and Jamie Lee Curtis is great in the supporting role as she always is.

Best Bit- Teaching Billy the ropes

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5. Scarface

“sacrilege” I hear you cry at Scarface being at number five. Well it’s my list and although I clearly thoroughly enjoyed it it doesn’t have the aspirational qualities for me that it clearly has for some….I’ve never been into drugs so the whole, making mountains of money and ramming mountains of coke up your nose, ruining your life wasn’t appealing to me and I’m a punk so money has never been a particularly high priority for me other than it being a necessity. This American dream nonsense had me raising an eyebrow even as a young one as it just didn’t seem like the idea of a great life. None of the characters are likeable but it’s so well directed and Pacino plays the character so well that it’s still a great movie and I can understand why it’s so well regarded. It’s just not the all time great for me that it is for others.

Best Bit- The final showdown

 

4. Barefoot Gen

A Japanese animated adaptation of the Keiji Nakazawa manga about a young boy during world war 2 and in particular the bombing of Hiroshima. Emotional, disturbing, brutal and somehow uplifting at times, this masterpiece directed by Mori Masaki uses the charm of animation to show the devastation and destruction brought on by the bomb. The use of a child as our protagonist just adds to the horror seeing as it is partially autobiographical from Nakazawa.

Best Bit- “Best” is not a good word but the bomb dropping is incredibly powerful.

 

3. Project A

The pinnacle of martial arts comedy and it’s fitting that Jackie Chan is leading the way. Some of the most spectacular and insane fight scenes and stunts I’ve ever seen in a movie thanks to Chan’s incredible bravery along with the incredible stunt men he squares off against. One of his most famous stunts occurs in this one with him falling 60 feet unaided with only canopies breaking his fall on the way down. Incredible stuff.

Best Bit- The street chase

 

2. Videodrome

Long live the new flesh. Ugh I’m going to have to praise James Woods here dammit. Another David Cronenberg movie and one of his best. A surreal, cyber-noir about a strange television signal that seduces and hypnotizes people with extreme violence and leads them to experience strange hallucinations that have them questioning reality. Utterly bizarre, truly visionary and brilliantly engaging, Videodrome had me thinking about it for weeks after I had seen it. I just couldn’t get it out of my head.

Best Bit- Stomach vcr

 

1. Star Wars: Return Of The Jedi

Meh, it might seem like a boring and obvious choice but there’s a reason for that. This was my favourite of the original trilogy as a kid although Empire would overtake it as I got older. This entry into the saga was so whimsical and colourful and after the bleak nihilism of Empire the story needed it. Yes if I had been an adult at the time I would have probably hated the Ewoks but as a kid I loved them and the crew all get along and everything is hunky dory in the end. It’s just a nice, fun fantasy sci fi movie with so many memorable bits. A tale of redemption, revenge, adventure and wee furry teddy bears. Great stuff.

Best Bit- Jabba’s barge

 

Well that’s 1983 done and dusted. Not the strongest year I’ll do but still plenty of great movies there. Let me know what you agree and disagree with and check out the ones you may not have seen. You never know, you might end up having a new favourite movie. Isn’t that what it’s all about?. Anyway until next time catch me @swing_kinker and behave until I see you again. Much love xx

 

 

 

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