Gregor's Top 40 of 1981by Movie-Mate | created - 24 Nov 2013 | updated - 4 months ago | Public
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PG | 115 min | Action, Adventure
In 1936, archaeologist and adventurer Indiana Jones is hired by the U.S. government to find the Ark of the Covenant before Adolf Hitler's Nazis can obtain its awesome powers.
Votes: 854,919 | Gross: $248.16M
3. Escape from New York (1981)
R | 99 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi
In 1997, when the U.S. president crashes into Manhattan, now a giant maximum security prison, a convicted bank robber is sent in to rescue him.
Votes: 120,245 | Gross: $25.24M
4. Blow Out (1981)
R | 108 min | Mystery, Thriller
A movie sound recordist accidentally records the evidence that proves that a car accident was actually murder and consequently finds himself in danger.
Votes: 41,659 | Gross: $13.75M
5. On Golden Pond (1981)
PG | 109 min | Drama
Norman is a curmudgeon with an estranged relationship with his daughter Chelsea. At Golden Pond, he and his wife nevertheless agree to care for Billy, the son of Chelsea's new boyfriend, and a most unexpected relationship blooms.
Votes: 26,645 | Gross: $119.29M
6. An American Werewolf in London (1981)
R | 97 min | Comedy, Horror
Two American college students on a walking tour of Britain are attacked by a werewolf that none of the locals will admit exists.
Votes: 87,888 | Gross: $30.57M
7. Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior (1981)
R | 96 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi
In the post-apocalyptic Australian wasteland, a cynical drifter agrees to help a small, gasoline rich community escape a horde of bandits.
Votes: 161,581 | Gross: $12.47M
9. Body Heat (1981)
R | 113 min | Crime, Drama, Romance
In the midst of a searing Florida heat wave, a woman persuades her lover, a small-town lawyer, to murder her rich husband.
Votes: 29,660 | Gross: $24.06M
10. The Prodigal Son (1981)
R | 100 min | Action, Comedy
A rich man's son (Yuen Biao) believes himself to be the best kung fu fighter in Canton. Unfortunately, his father, anxious for his son's safety, bribes all his opponents to lose. After a ... See full summary »
The Prodigal Son
11. ...All the Marbles (1981)
R | 113 min | Comedy, Drama, Sport
Harry Sears manages The California Dolls, a female wrestling tag team who tour America, hoping for a chance at winning big time. Harry's also romantically involved with one of them. Their ... See full summary »
13. The Howling (1981)
R | 91 min | Horror
After a bizarre and near deadly encounter with a serial killer, a television newswoman is sent to a remote mountain resort whose residents may not be what they seem.
Votes: 29,752 | Gross: $17.99M
14. Heavy Metal (1981)
R | 86 min | Animation, Adventure, Fantasy
A glowing green orb - which embodies ultimate evil - terrorizes a young girl with an anthology of bizarre and fantastic stories of dark fantasy, eroticism and horror.
Directors: Gerald Potterton, John Bruno, John Halas, Julian Harris, Jimmy T. Murakami, Barrie Nelson, Paul Sabella, Jack Stokes, Pino Van Lamsweerde, Harold Whitaker | Stars: Richard Romanus, John Candy, Joe Flaherty, Don Francks
15. Thief (1981)
R | 123 min | Action, Crime, Drama
Coming closer to his dream of leading a normal life, a professional safecracker agrees to do a job for the Mafia, who has other plans for him.
Votes: 23,613 | Gross: $11.49M
17. My Young Auntie (1981)
Not Rated | 121 min | Action, Comedy
Cheng Tai-Nan (Kara Hui) is an honest and faithful servant of a dying patriarch who wants nothing more than to protect his vast wealth from his selfish, conniving nephew, Yung-Sheng. ... See full summary »
My Young Auntie
18. Return of the Sentimental Swordsman (1981)
101 min | Action, Drama
Many feel that this, one of the Shaw Studio's biggest moneymakers, is one of those rare sequels which superior to its original. In any case, the charming title hero is back in action, ... See full summary »
Return of the Sentimental Swordsman
19. The Treasure Hunters (1981)
R | 104 min | Action, Comedy
A rich young man seeks to make a name for himself by being the one to discover a lost treasure. He teams up with a streetwise kung-fu artist and together, they set out to not only find the ... See full summary »
The Treasure Hunters
20. Game of Death II (1981)
R | 96 min | Action, Crime, Mystery
After Billy Lo is killed while seeking the murderers of his friend, his brother Bobby goes all out to bring the perpetrators to justice.
Tower of Death
21. Roar of the Lion (1981)
Not Rated | 104 min | Action, Drama
The traditional lion dance never looked so good as in Lion vs. Lion which captures the most impressive sequences of lion dancing on film. Lo Mang teams up with Wong Yu, as they ... See full summary »
Lion Vs. Lion
22. Samurai Reincarnation (1981)
122 min | Action, Fantasy, Horror
The villain is called Amakusa Shiro Tokaisada. He is actually based on a real christian samurai. The movie was one of the inspirations for the game called 'Samurai Shodown' (actual spelling)
23. Martial Club (1981)
R | 110 min | Action, Drama
Wong Fei-Hong and his once-rival, now friend, find themselves and their martial arts schools pitted against a rival school which uses a Kung Fu expert from the North to do their dirty work.
24. Bloody Parrot (1981)
89 min | Action, Horror, Thriller
An expert swordsman is suspected of being the thief of a treasure sent to Emperor. The swordsman who has nothing to do with the theft investigates and is led on the trail of the supernatural "Bloody Parrot".
25. The Sword Stained with Royal Blood (1981)
104 min | Action, Drama
"Godfather of the kung-fu film", Chang Cheh, made this treasured and beloved adventure featuring a sword, training manual, treasure map and a secret message. The kung-fu which ensues is as impressive as it is glorious.
Sword Stained With Royal Blood
26. Prince of the City (1981)
R | 167 min | Crime, Drama
A New York City narcotics detective reluctantly agrees to cooperate with a special commission investigating police corruption, and soon realises he's in over his head, and nobody can be trusted.
Votes: 6,910 | Gross: $8.12M
28. The Fox and the Hound (1981)
G | 83 min | Animation, Adventure, Drama
A little fox named Tod, and Copper, a hound puppy, vow to be best buddies forever. But as Copper grows into a hunting dog, their unlikely friendship faces the ultimate test.
Votes: 81,722 | Gross: $63.46M
29. Suddenly in the Dark (1981)
Not Rated | 95 min | Horror
A wife starts to suspect her husband's infidelity after the arrival of their new, young housekeeper, who carries a mysterious wooden doll with herself.
Suddenly at Midnight
31. The Burning (1981)
R | 91 min | Horror
A former summer camp caretaker, horribly burned from a prank gone wrong, lurks around an upstate New York summer camp bent on killing the teenagers responsible for his disfigurement.
32. Reds (1981)
PG | 195 min | Biography, Drama, History
A radical American journalist becomes involved with the Communist revolution in Russia, and hopes to bring its spirit and idealism to the United States.
Votes: 20,045 | Gross: $40.38M
34. Hell Night (1981)
R | 101 min | Horror, Thriller
Four college pledges are forced to spend the night in a deserted old mansion, where they are stalked by the monstrous survivor of a family massacre years earlier.
35. Outland (1981)
R | 109 min | Action, Crime, Sci-Fi
A federal marshal stationed at a mining colony on the Jupiter moon of Io, uncovers a drug-smuggling conspiracy. He gets no help from the workers or authorities when he finds himself marked for murder.
Votes: 26,130 | Gross: $17.37M
36. Excalibur (1981)
PG | 140 min | Adventure, Drama, Fantasy
Merlin the magician helps Arthur Pendragon unite the Britons around the Round Table of Camelot, even as dark forces conspire to tear it apart.
Votes: 55,676 | Gross: $34.97M
37. Dragonslayer (1981)
PG | 109 min | Action, Adventure, Fantasy
A young wizarding apprentice is sent to kill a dragon which has been devouring girls from a nearby kingdom.
Votes: 14,437 | Gross: $14.11M
38. The Masked Avengers (1981)
R | 92 min | Action, Drama
Philip Kwok (Lizard venom) plays a repentant killer who vows to destroy the masked gang of which he was a member. A young fighter and his martial arts brothers (incl Chiang Sheng, venom ... See full summary »
39. Dreadnaught (1988)
91 min | Action, Comedy, Horror
A short-tempered, violent criminal named "White Tiger" is on the run from the police and joins a theater troupe for disguise, killing anyone who angers him or who suspects his identity. One... See full summary »
40. Black Lizard (1981)
82 min | Horror, Mystery, Thriller
Young swordsman Lung Fei encounters strange omens portending the death of his fiancee Ting Tzu-chu. His enquiries with the help of Chief Constable Tieh Hu reveal an astounding story.
The Black Lizard
41. For Your Eyes Only (1981)
PG | 127 min | Action, Adventure, Thriller
James Bond is assigned to find a missing British vessel, equipped with a weapons encryption device and prevent it from falling into enemy hands.
Votes: 88,650 | Gross: $62.30M
42. Halloween II (1981)
R | 92 min | Horror
While Sheriff Brackett and Dr. Loomis hunt for Michael Myers, a traumatized Laurie is rushed to hospital, and the serial killer is not far behind her.
Votes: 71,459 | Gross: $25.53M
43. Friday the 13th Part 2 (1981)
R | 87 min | Horror, Mystery, Thriller
Mrs. Voorhees is dead, and Camp Crystal Lake is shut down, but a camp next to the infamous place is stalked by an unknown assailant.
Votes: 56,069 | Gross: $21.72M
44. My Bloody Valentine (1981)
R | 90 min | Horror, Mystery, Thriller
A decades-old folk tale surrounding a deranged murderer killing those who celebrate Valentine's Day turns out to be true to legend when a group defies the killer's order and people start turning up dead.
Votes: 16,882 | Gross: $5.67M
45. Ms .45 (1981)
R | 80 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller
A timid and mute seamstress goes insane after being attacked and raped twice in one day, in which she takes to the streets of New York City after dark and randomly shoots men with a .45 caliber pistol.
46. The House by the Cemetery (1981)
Not Rated | 86 min | Horror