This is a big month for movies. There were over twenty movies released in August 1987. If you couldn’t find a movie to watch you weren’t trying hard enough. Comedy, action, war, thrillers, teen movies and horror.
I saw quite a few of them but didn’t even hit the half way mark. There are some great movies on the list, a cult classic and one movie so bad it should be erased from existence.
Let’s take a look at the movies released in August 1987.
Movies from August 1987
Richard Dreyfuss starred in solidified his stardom in movies like Jaws and Close Encounters of the Third Kind. Emilio Estevez was a star thanks to movies like The Outsiders and The Breakfast Club and as a member of the Brat Pack.
The movie is part buddy-cop comedy and part thriller. The opening sequence is a high octane prison break and you wonder if you stumbled into the wrong movie. Once the buddy cop movie starts the movie is an enjoyable comedy.
Dreyfuss and Estevez play police officers assigned to the night shift of a stakeout. They are watching an attractive woman who’s ex-boyfriend broke out of prison. Dreyfuss is attracted to her and works his way into her life. Putting the entire case in jeopardy.
Dreyfuss does a great job in the movie. Estevez does a decent job. In this movie he reminds me a lot of his brother, Charlie Sheen.
Stakeout is a fun comedy and I enjoyed it. I haven’t seen it in years but I’d watch it again if it was on TV or a streamer.
Siskel and Ebert both gave it a thumbs up.
Masters of the Universe
Cannon Film, enough said.
OK, I can say a little more. This movie is bad, so bad it’s good. It’s completely campy and a weird plot for a Masters of the Universe movie.
Dolph Lundgren play He-Man, which is a good choice. Did you know Masters of the Universe is Lundgren’s second movie role. His first being Drago in Rocky IV.
The plot is a little goofy. Skeletor (Frank Langella) and Evil-Lyn )Meg Foster) steal a cosmic key that can open a portal to anywhere by using music. With the key Skeletor breaches Castle Grayskull and while He-Man is trying to save the castle they are overwhelmed and flee using a prototype key, sending them to Earth.
Courtney Cox plays a teenager on Earth who finds the key and helps He-Man save the universe.
Masters of the Universe was a box office bomb. It’s one of those movies where audiences and critics agree. Despite the negative reviews, I like the movie. It’s a guilty pleasure. Over the years it’s earned a cult classic status among loyal fans.
Lundgren has stated He-man is one of his least favorite roles, while Langella regards Skeletor as one of his favorites.
You can watch Masters of the Universe on HBO Max
Can’t Buy Me Love
Before Patrick Dempsey was “McDreamy”, he was a dork in high school who couldn’t get a date. Weren’t we all…
Dempsey plays Ronald Miller, a high school loser, never made it with a lady, till the boys told me something I missed, then my next door neighbor with a daughter had a favor. Wait, I’m thinking of something else. But it’s not to far off.
Miller makes a deal with his neighbor Cindy (Amanda Peterson). Cindy ruined her mom’s expensive suede outfit and needs to replace it before her mom finds out. Miller agrees to buy the replacement, which is $1,000, money he was saving for a brand new telescope, if Cindy will be his ‘boyfriend’ for a month and teach him how to he cool.
Can’t Buy Me Love is a good teen comedy. It’s no John Hughes movie but it understands teenagers and their plight in high school. Roger Ebert gave it a half star. He was way off the mark.
One thing that has always stuck with me over the years is the dance sequence. Anytime I see someone dancing like a spaz I immediately say “Hey, it’s the African anteater ritual!”
The Monster Squad
I have a confession…I have no recollection of The Monster Squad. I’m certain I saw it in the theater but I have no memory of the movie. Watching the trailer doesn’t even bring up memories. If anyone asks me about the movie the only thing I remember is the kid yells “Wolfman’s got nards.”
I never rented it over the years or watched it on TV.
I know it’s a retro cult classic but I can’t tell you what it’s about. It’s a strange blank spot in my mind. I may need professional help.
You can watch The Monster Squad on Starz
Born in East L.A.
This is one of the first movies starring Cheech but not Chong. At the time Cheech was separating himself Chong to work on his solo career. The movie is based on the Cheech and Chong song “Born in East L.A.”
It’s a decent comedy but nothing great. It’s not a movie that you’ll go back to over the years.
Cheech is rounded up by immigration while picking up his cousin at a factory job. All the factory workers and Cheech are deported back to Mexico. Cheech spends the rest of the movie trying to get back to L.A. claiming the entire time that he was born in East L.A.
The movie is funny and the jokes are good. It comes in just under 90 minutes which is good. It couldn’t go much longer and still stay fresh.
It’s a good step into Cheech’s solo career. He’d go on to appear in some great movies including Desperado, From Dusk Till Dawn and Tin Cup. He also had a long run on the TV series Nash Bridges starring opposite Don Johnson.
I never saw Dirty Dancing in the theater. Seeing the trailer it didn’t seem like my kind of movie. I rented it months later when it finally hit VHS. I’m glad I did, it’s a fantastic movie!
Starring Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey, Dirty Dancing is set at a 1960s Catskills vacation resort. It’s like summer camp for families. It’s a coming-of-age story for ‘Baby’ Housman (Grey) as she falls in love with the local dance instructor Johnny Castle (Swayze).
The casting is great, although Grey was hesitant to work with Swayze again. The two starred in 1984’s Red Dawn and didn’t get along together on set. Their chemistry in Dirty Dancing is captivating, if they were at odds of screen it didn’t affect their performances.
Did you know Swayze was 34 and Grey was 26 in this movie. They were portraying characters ten years younger but it worked well. I miss Swayze. His last series, The Beast is great. (It’s on Fubo TV)
The movie was boosted by a great soundtrack too. Four songs hit the pop charts and three won awards. “She’s Like the Wind” by Patrick Swayze won the BMI Film Award, “Hungry Eyes” and “(I’ve Had) The Time of My Life” won the ASCAP Film award. “(I’ve Had) The Time of My Life” also won the Academy Award for Best Original Song.
There’s also a quote from this movie I say constantly…”Nobody puts baby in the corner.”
Dirty Dancing was the first episode of The Movies That Made Us series on Netflix. It is a great behind-the-scenes documentary.
The Garbage Pail Kids Movie
Unlike The Monster Squad I remember this movie…I wish I didn’t. It’s bad, really bad.
There’s not much to day about this movie, expect maybe, avoid it at all costs! As great as the Garbage Pail Kids trading cards are the movie is the exact opposite. I loved the trading cards, they were original, gross and funny. I’m not sure who thought it would make a good movie.
It’s one of those movies where you ask yourself, self, “How did this movie every get made?”
Watch the trailer and move on. It’s not streaming anywhere for a good reason.
I’m a huge fan of war movies and this is a good one. Following closely on the heels of Platoon, Hamburger Hill had some big shoes to fill.
Hamburger Hill tells the story of the 101st Airborne ‘Screaming Eagles’ as they attempt to take Hill 937, a ten day assault known as the Battle of Hamburger Hill.
The story focuses on one platoon as they try to capture the hill. It’s one of the better Vietnam movies of the 80s. It’s a gritty look at the horrors of war and the bonds that form in combat. The characters and friendships develop in a natural way.
Hamburger Hill is the movie debut for Dylan McDermott and Courtney B. Vance.
Hamburger Hill holds a 100% rating on Rotten Tomato. It’s worth watching.
You can watch Hamburger Hill on Amazon Prime.
Other movies released in August 1987
There were a lot of movies released in August 1987. Here is the list of movies I’ve never seen.
I’ve heard Care Bears is good. In 1987 there was no way I’d be caught going to the Care Bears movie. That’s a stigma that follows all through high school.
I’m not a fan of Madonna and wouldn’t see a movie with her as the star. I think she does a better job in a supporting role like in A League of Their Own.
The Fourth Protocol looks like a good spy thriller. I may track it down this year. I’ve heard good things about No Way Out too. Maybe I should watch it.
If you’ve seen one of these let me know.
August 1987 was a big month for movies, at least in the number released. A couple cult classics and some timeless classics. As much as I love the campy Masters of the Universe I’d say Dirty Dancing is my favorite for the month. Hamburger Hill is a close second.
What are your favorites from August 1987?
Next week we’ll look at August 1992.