10 Movies That Prove The '80s Was The Golden Age Of Action

Both the greatest and most defining decade that the action movie has ever seen.

Die Hard
20th Century Fox

Even though almost every scenario imaginable has been played out at least a dozen times over, people still can't seem to get enough of action movies.

Sitting back and enjoying a couple of hours full of fist-fights, shootouts, car chases and explosions is one of the best ways to relax for any self-respecting fan of the genre, and with so many stone-cold classics to choose from, it isn't like you'll be left wanting either.

There's something that's so simple and also so damn entertaining about action cinema that means it will always remain one of the most popular forms of entertainment, no matter how many generic titles flood both theaters and local bargain bins on annual basis.

These days you're a lot more likely to see superheroes, spandex and CGI at the expense of practical stunts, as the visual effects revolution of the 90s led to a seismic shift in how studio movies were made that continues to day. That left the '80s as the final stand for the old-school staples of action cinema, and luckily for us it also happened to be the best decade that the genre had ever seen.

10. Aliens

Die Hard
20th Century Studios

Fresh off the success of the Terminator, signing on to direct a sequel to somebody else's movie didn't seem like the logical next step for cinema's latest wunderkind, but the decision to tackle Aliens turned out to be an inspired choice by James Cameron.

Ridley Scott's first installment is one of the greatest entries in both the sci-fi and horror genres, and with some pretty lofty expectations to live up to Cameron was under huge pressure to deliver. And he did, by shying away from the horror aspects of the franchise and crafting Aliens as a guns-blazing action classic.

Full of nail-biting tension, blitzkrieg action, memorable dialogue and a cast of three-dimensional characters led by Sigourney Weaver's Academy Award-nominated performance that cemented Ellen Ripley as a cinematic icon, Aliens is a nonstop edge-of-the-seat thrill ride from start to finish.

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