Here is the list for the Best Movie Stunts for the Decade 1980-1989 as listed in the book, 100 Years of the Best Movie Stunts!
For a musical comedy this movie has the longest car chase sequence in history. The cars are just piling up at the end, hundreds of cars destroyed…it’s awesome! $3.5 million was spent on this sequence alone and lasts over 20 minutes of the movie.
1981 – The Raiders of the Lost Ark
Although there are plenty of fantastic stunts in this film to mention, Terry Leonard does another through the windshield-off the front hood-then undercarriage crawl underneath an Army transport truck, then up the back and into the driver’s side for another round of fighting.
1982 – Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior
A case where the sequel is so much better than the original. This film rocks from beginning to end and has an unbelievable chase that lasts the second half of the movie. Great stunts throughout.
Jackie Chan makes a name for himself and becomes a stunt legend in this movie. From this movie on he is untouchable worldwide as a stuntman that does his own acting or as an actor that does his own stunts, whichever way you want to say it. He created his legendary Jackie Chan Stunt Team for this movie and for years to come sets a new standard for stunt teams worldwide.
1984 – Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom
This decade is unique as the decade ruled by Indiana Jones in stunts and action sequences. The first 3 Indiana Jones films make the list. Also, the second rope bridge sequence to hit since last decade’s The Man Who Would Be King. Vic Armstrong is a stand out here as Harrison Ford‘s stand-in.
Jackie Chan‘s chance to shine in a modern setting this time, and to really showcase what the Jackie Chan Stunt Team can do. To be quite frank about this movie, it’s all stunts from start to finish and I’m surprised that all the stuntmen survived the making of this film. It’s amazing.
The combination of John Woo and Chow Yun Fat is just too good to be true. This film is viewed by many as the finest action film ever to come out of Chinese cinema, and put both Woo and Yun Fat in Hollywood’s viewport. John Woo really gets Chow Yun Fat to do some fun stuff in this movie. Very bloody stuff though.
The next two films became great series and both just happened to be set during Christmas. Lethal Weapon became the standard for buddy-buddy cop movies. This film is dedicated to legendary stuntman Dar Robinson who died the year before, and features some great fight choreography by Cedric Adams, Dennis Newsome, and Rorion Gracie and a great backward high fall by actress Jackie Swanson.
This movie became the template for many action films to come for years after it was made. So much so, that pitching an action screenplay to studios became as easy as saying, “It’s Die Hard on a plane… or It’s Die Hard on a boat”. The whole film rocks, but the highlight here is Ken Bates as he doubles for Alan Rickman in a fall from the Nakitomi building.
1989 – Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade
Five years later, Vic Armstrong does it again as the stand-in for Indiana Jones. His jump from a horse to a german tank has been voted in the top ten of movie stunts of all time on many lists over the years.
Check out our new Book, 100 Years of the Best Movie Stunts!