Black Moon Rising starring Tommy Lee Jones and Linda Hamilton
Available for free on Youtube
Black Moon Rising is not well remembered today. This bizarre action movie involving an experimental car and a government conspiracy and corporate espionage stars Tommy Lee Jones as some sort of government contractor/spy who is tasked with help take down a corrupt corporation, He winds up almost by accident involving the owners of an experimental car called The Black Moon in his heist and then a car thief ring headed up by Robert Vaughn and Linda Hamilton gets involved and from there it’s difficult to care. Jones and Hamilton eventually become lovers which I suppose could be a draw (?). The big thing to know about the movie however was that it was conceived of by John Carpenter who wrote the screenplay but did not direct. You can find out all you need to know about the making of Black Moon Rising in this surprisingly fascinating making of video on Youtube.
Clan of the Cave Bear starring Darryl Hannah
Clan of the Cave Bear is one of those bizarre quick buck attempts to capture a pop culture moment. For reasons that few people remember today, the book series which Clan of the Cave Bear was the 50 Shades of Grey of it’s day, the book everyone in the country was clamoring to read. Naturally, Hollywood jumped aboard and pushed out Clan of the Cave Bear while people were still finishing the last chapter of the book they just bought. The legendary Roger Ebert illustrated the bankruptcy of this cash in property in his 1986 review of Clan of the Cave Bear.
The Longshot starring Harvey Korman and Tim Conway
Available for free on Youtube
Not too many people remember this 1986 horse racing comedy starring Tim Conway and Harvey Korman but the guys at The Vulcan Vault stumbled over it back in 2013 and they actually reviewed The Longshot for their Youtube channel. Check it out here.
Iron Eagle starring Louis Gossett Jr and Jason Gedrick
Available for free on Youtube
People forget that Iron Eagle preceded Tom Cruise and Top Gun by more than 4 months in theaters. Fighter jets were THE trend of 1986 and Iron Eagle was out in front in January of 86 with Jason Gedrick and a surprisingly impactful performance from the great Louis Gossett Jr. who even went as far as appearing as his character in the music video “Iron Eagle” by King Cobra.
Available, in pieces, for free on Youtube
Troll is really only remembered for it’s low budget terrible sequel Troll 2 which inspired the wonderful documentary Best Worst Movie. But, before there ever could be a Troll 2 there was the original Troll which is a minor cult classic among lovers of terrible 80’s horror movies. Interesting note, future husband and wife Julia Louis Dreyfuss and Brad Hall are each part of the Troll ensemble cast. In fact, if you want to save yourself the torture of watching Troll you can watch Dreyfuss and Hall’s stuff in this clip courtesy of Fandango.
The Imagemaker starring Michael Nouri and Jerry Orbach available on Amazon Prime
Few remember this 1986 political thriller, mostly because there isn’t much to remember it by. At the time Michael Nouri was a Hollywood chosen one that producers believed would be a big star. When that didn’t happen he turned into a serviceable character actor playing a few heavies here and there. Here however, in The Imagemaker, Nouri is the star and this gloriously 80’s trailer shows you why you likely don’t remember him or this movie. See the trailer on Youtube. You can contact Michael Nouri if you’d like via his website MichaelNouri.com.
Is Deborah Foreman our 1986 version of Betsy Russel? We’ll see, like Ms. Russell she has a taste for the T & A B-movie circuit of the 80’s and also like Ms. Russell, we will be seeing her more than a few times in 1986 beginning with the comedy My Chauffeur which has her as a rags to riches female chauffeur at an all male limo company wh0 is wooed by a rich playboy, at least according to this 1986 review of the film in the New York Times by critic Lawrence Van Gelder. The trailer is certainly a must see on Youtube. By the way, Deborah Foreman still looks great 30 yeears later. See for yourself at DeborahForeman.net.
Robin Williams and Kurt Russell made a football movie? Yes, that happened. The Best of Times has actually become a staple of late night syndicated movies over the last 30 years. With its recognizable stars and football as the subject, Best of Times is not surprisingly a go to flick for independent, low power TV stations trying to fill 24 hours of programming 7 days a week. So, many of you may have already seen this modest underdog story once or twice even if you don’t remember the full experience. Best of Times was written, as all sports movies are, by Ron Shelton and directed by Roger Spottiswoode whose eclectic career includes 48 Hours and Tomorrow Never Dies among other well known flicks. The 1986 review in the New York Times was relatively kind.
Eliminators starring Andrew Prine and Denise Crosby
Available for free on VEOH.com
The poster says it all “Mandroid, Mercenary, Scientist, Ninja.” Who doesn’t want to see what a Mandroid is and how he interacts with a Ninja? Throw in Denise Crosby, Lt. Yar on Star Trek Next Generation, and you have a recipe for one exceptional bad movie. The team at the International Syndicate of Cult Film Critics wrote a tremendous breakdown of Eliminators for those not interested in actually watching this movie.
Power starring Richard Gere, Gene Hackman and Julie Christie Directed by Sidney Lumet
Available for rent on Youtube
Reading the description of Power is a lot like reading the description for Our Brand is Crisis. The film is about a political consultant who goes from hot shot to cynic to idealist all while no real plot unfolds, at least according to Roger Ebert’s review. The cast is pretty incredible for a movie that is barely remembered today. Richard Gere, Julie Christie, Gene Hackman, Cate Capshaw and a very young Denzel Washington, all directed by the man behind Network, Sidney Lumet. Despite Roger’s review, this is the movie I am most interested in seeing if only for that incredible cast.
Youngblood starring Rob Lowe and Patrick Swayze Available ?
It’s strange that a movie that is among the most well remembered from 1986 is one of the hardest to find online. Youngblood, much like Best of Times, became a syndication staple in the 80’s and 90’s for its well known stars, Rob Lowe and Patrick Swayze, and sports setting. Now, you can’t find it anywhere online? Then again, Youngblood wasn’t exactly well loved by critics, Roger Ebert gave the film two stars.
Down and Out in Beverly Hills starring Nick Nolte and Richard Dreyfuss available for rent on Amazon or available to Netflix subscribers to stream immediately.
One of the better movies of 1986 by reputation anyway, Down and Out in Beverly Hills is yet another big star vehicle that stayed alive on syndicated television for decades. Roger Ebert gave the film 4 stars back in the day.