’80s nostalgia registers with students today

Elizabeth Golden

I don’t know about all of you, but I’m pretty sick of the 2000’s. The majority of our music is crap and our movies aren’t much better, besides rare exceptions.

These last few months, we witnessed the best of the best with Grammy and Oscar season, but unless it’s between the months of October and December, chances are the entertainment value is greatly diminished.

The ‘90s weren’t horrible, but they led way to the cheesy boy bands and unrealistic teenage fantasies.  Movies were decent, but definitely nothing compared to the preceding decade: the 1980’s.

Let’s begin with the music. Although music is not my area of expertise, it deserves a brief mention. Paul Simon, the Clash, Bruce Springsteen, Cyndi Lauper, Metallica, U2, Nirvana, Madonna, Bon Jovi, Michael Jackson and Prince are just a few of the most notable names of the 1980’s.

The music even had such a distinct style.

It’s easy to tell an ‘80s song when one comes on the radio these days. From unusual beats to stunning vocals, the music is unlike anything produced today. I’m sorry, but Bruno Mars will never become the next Michael Jackson and Lady Gaga cannot compete with Madonna.

Now onto films, which I do know a thing or two about. The 1980’s laid a foundation for the films today and many from the decade are recognized as one of the best films of all time.

There’s so many incredible films that it’s impossible to put them in any list, so I will begin by discussing a few of the films worth mentioning.

“When Harry Met Sally” came on the scene in 1989 and proved to be one of the best and most quotable films of all time. Life lessons were learned and the young actors became Hollywood stars. These days, an ordinary friendship turned romance transitions into Vampires or stupid teenagers.

Rarely is there a fairly innocent, brilliantly written film like “When Harry Met Sally” released in this world.

Films like this don’t sell anymore due to a change in time and a lack of interest in the subject. It’s impossible just to create a simple story of a friendship.

There always has to be an unnecessary element of the supernatural realm or teen drama.

The first “Batman” feature film was also released in 1989 starring Michael Keaton.. This heartfelt film truly delves into the character of Bruce Wayne. The audience felt his inner struggle without the unrealistic special effects and overly anticipated explosions.

This Batman film was relatively free money making tricks and focused on the script and the characters. Although “The Dark Knight” may be cool with all those explosions and stuff, the original feeling of Batman is missing. There is no emotional connection to the characters.

Instead, there are a lot of explosions and women in tight spandex.

Going along the superhero theme, “Superman II” was released in 1980. It really does not get better than the original Superman starring Christopher Reeve and Gene Hackman. Filmmakers have tried, and failed, many times over the last decade to get Superman right, but nothing will be able to compete with the originals.

There were several great Steven Spielberg films released such as “Return of the Jedi,” “Empire Strikes Back” and “ET,” both of which will forever stay on the Best films of all time list. No series will ever be able to challenge “Star Wars.”

It is the original series and the films are brilliant in every sense of the word. Although they may come across as cheesy now, they are amazing classics that should be watched and re-watched by everyone.

Among other ‘80s films are Beverly Hills Cop, Dead Poets Society, Good Morning Vietnam, Diner, Repo Man, Scarface, Karate Kid, Back to the Future, Sixteen Candles, Ghostbusters, Risky Business, Airplane, Breakfast Club, Rain Man, Fast Times at Ridgemont High, Die Hard, Raiders of the Lost Ark and dozens more.

None of which I have space to talk about, but all deserve to be viewed.

Now, try to name that many films since the 1980’s that deserve to be classic films. I highly doubt your list will be that long.