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10 Poorly Aged Things 80s Movies Would Never Be Able To Get Away With Today

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80s cinema has produced some classic blockbusters, with these spectacular big-screen events capturing the attention of audiences worldwide. Following the release of the Indiana Jones 5 trailer, moviegoers are discussing their favorite 80s films. While these movies may be beloved, they also feature some highly controversial elements by modern standards.

RELATED: 10 Best ’80s Movies That Got Terrible Reviews

While these glorious movies provide a fun time for viewers of all ages, they also appear horribly outdated in contemporary times. 1980s cinema can sometimes seem a product of its time, reflecting a culture wildly different from the modern age. These 80s flicks contain many questionable sequences that production companies would never be able to get away with today.

Controversial subject matter ahead, pertaining to dated views, and other sensitive subject matter.

10/10 Bill And Ted’s Excellent Adventure Features Unacceptable Slurs

Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure

Starring Keanu Reeves in one of his earliest roles, Bill And Ted’s Excellent Adventure is a hilariously madcap time travel story. This barmy motion picture follows teen layabouts Bill and Ted as they travel through time to ace their history exam. While the film produces many laughs, it also contains surprisingly homophobic material.

After believing his friend to be dead, Bill is overjoyed to discover Ted survived his dangerous ordeal with a medieval castle guard. Upon sharing a hug, the pair become concerned that they are showing too much affection. Bill and Ted simultaneously exclaim a homophobic slur that would never fly in a modern feature.

9/10 Indiana Jones And The Temple Of Doom Fails Representationally

Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom poster

Featuring one of the most iconic action heroes, Indiana Jones And The Temple Of Doom offers moviegoers a truly exhilarating ride, as Indiana is tasked with locating an ancient stone in India. While the movie is a visual treat, its depiction of the Indian villagers is highly questionable.

Temple of Doom’s Indian characters are treated poorly within the film’s narrative, as they are shown as weak and helpless throughout the motion picture. The cinematic blockbuster also showcases the villagers as having disgusting eating habits, tucking into such unusual delicacies as beetles and monkey brains, making this one of the most abhorrent portrayals of the Indian community.

8/10 Zapped Can’t Overcome Its Misogyny

Barney looks anxious in the lab in Zapped.

Released in 1982, Zapped! is an excellent coming-of-age comedy. The film sees young high school student Barney gain telekinesis powers after a lab session goes wrong. Despite displaying a great sense of humor, Zapped!’s treatment of women leaves little to be desired.

RELATED: 10 Best ’80s Kids’ Movies

This teen comedy features many bizarre moments of female nudity, as Barney uses his telekinetic abilities to undress women. The overt sexualization of its female characters feels especially gross in the modern age, with the “Me Too” movement having raised many questions regarding the poor treatment of women throughout history.

7/10 Groundhog Day Is Downright Creepy

Phil and Rita share a romantic embrace in Groundhog Day.

While Groundhog Day doesn’t resolve its central mystery, Bill Murray’s timeless classic is still considered one of cinema’s greatest comedies. Its storyline concerns weatherman Phil being forced to relive the same day over and over again, and although movie enthusiasts highly regard it, its romance subplot is morally dubious.

Phil’s courting of his work colleague Rita is unintentionally creepy by contemporary standards, as he exploits the time loop to win her affection. The arrogant and selfish weatherman develops an unhealthy obsession with his co-worker, using his unique circumstances to learn everything about her, which allows him to manipulate the poor woman into falling for his affections.

6/10 Sixteen Candles Is Fantastically Ignorant

Long Duk Dong Sixteen Candles

Directed by John Hughes, Sixteen Candles is a highly entertaining coming-of-age comedy. The narrative sees 16-year-old Samantha Baker left disappointed after her parents forget her birthday. Although the story appears sweet, it contains some truly insulting material.

Most notably, the movie’s depiction of foreign exchange student Long Duk Dong is morally reprehensible. This profoundly racist caricature sees the Asian child portrayed as a dumb presence, as he mistakes a fork and spoon for a pair of chopsticks. Furthermore, his appearances within the picture are accompanied by a loud gong, further emphasizing his race in a manner that would appear culturally insensitive today.

5/10 Ghostbusters Leaves A Lot To Be Desired For Its Female Characters

Ghostbusters Peter and Dana

Ghostbusters is highly regarded as one of Hollywood’s best supernatural comedies, with its superb direction by Ivan Reitman capturing the electric chemistry between its four leads. Although the film succeeds as a comic horror, it also features one of the most problematic action heroes, with Peter Venkman’s treatment of the movie’s female characters raising many eyebrows in modern times.

During his time as a Ghostbuster, Peter forcibly enters Dana’s flat without permission, and proceeds to flirt with the young woman, despite the pair being virtual strangers. More worrying is the snarky scientist’s attempts to seduce a female university student, heaping praise on the young woman while performing an ESP test, despite being twice her age.

4/10 The Goonies Features Xenophobic Behavior

The core group of friends in The Goonies

Released in 1985, The Goonies delivers a fun-filled family adventure, as the titular gang of children search for some pirate treasure. However, while the film may seem like a wholesome, child-friendly picture, its content is startlingly crude for a family movie.

RELATED: 10 Great 80s Movies Your Mom Has Never Heard Of

Among the most surprising elements of this movie is the choice to have the children swear during their grand journey. The Goonies also features a deeply xenophobic sequence, with Mouth purposefully feeding Spanish housekeeper Rosalita wildly inaccurate information. This cruel exploitation of her inability to speak English would appear highly derogatory by modern standards.

3/10 Back To The Future Has A Famously Disturbing Plot

Back to the Future Marty and Lorraine

Considered a movie trilogy that sticks the landing, the Back To The Future franchise is a charming series of films following the adventures of the madcap scientist Doc Brown and his teen friend Marty. However, while the sci-fi saga is beloved by many, the first film is somewhat problematic, as Marty travels back to his parents’ school days and becomes his mother’s crush.

Lorraine’s romantic attraction to Marty is truly appalling, as she becomes besotted with her own son. Marty’s father, George, also doesn’t come across well, with the movie showcasing his nerdy Dad spying on a woman undressing with his binoculars. Despite this creepy behavior, George is portrayed as a lovable individual, making this one of the most sexist aspects of 80s cinema.

2/10 Howard The Duck Features An Unsettling Romance


Directed by Willard Huyck, Howard The Duck is one of the 80s’ weirdest motion pictures, following a humanoid duck who arrives on Earth to stop an extra-terrestrial invasion. A particularly unusual plot point within this release is the romance between Howard and human musician Beverly Switzler, which raises many unsettling implications.

This highly disturbing love story is made more sickening by the fact that Howard is of a completely different species than Beverly. The decidedly odd couple not only constantly flirt with each other but also share an intimate moment in bed, marking a shocking instance of bestiality which would never make the cut in a modern picture.

1/10 Short Circuit Highlights A Racist Performance

Ben Jabituya hangs out with Johnny Five in Short Circuit.

Short Circuit’s release birthed one of cinema’s most beloved robot characters, Johnny 5. Joined by his friend Ben Jabituya, the duo embark on a heartwarming journey. Unfortunately, Fisher Stevens’ depiction of Ben carries some unpleasant connotations.

For the role of the Indian American engineer, Fisher Stevens decided to adopt brownface. This once common film practice is now deemed wildly controversial, with its mimicry of ethnic minorities leaving a sour taste for contemporary audiences.

NEXT: 10 ’80s Movies That Should Have Been Hits But Had Impossible Competition

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