Top 10 Movie Songs of the 80s


5. “(I’ve Had) The Time Of My Life” ““ Bill Medley & Jennifer Warnes

– Dirty Dancing (1987)

This 80s song that Baby and Johnny dance to in the 60s world of Dirty Dancing, and the climactic scene it produced, is a fundamental addition to this list. A big personal thanks to everyone involved with the romantic scene and for providing so many nostalgic memories. This song and its closing sax riff is what helped bring the captivating chemistry between Swayze and Grey to life and, well, the whole film.

4. “Eye of the Tiger” ““ Survivor

– Rocky III (1982)

The inspirational song “Eye of the Tiger”, written at the request of Sylvester Stallone, will forever be associated with the Rocky franchise. Not only does it go down as one of the biggest selling singles of all time, but training rooms haven’t been the same since. The song was a massive hit and was also featured in the beginning of Rocky IV in ’85, and even went on to inspire its own self titled film outside of the franchise.

3. “Footloose” ““ Kenny Loggins

– Footloose (1984)

Kevin Bacon’s flick Footloose featured a number of hits, including Bonnie Tyler’s “Holding Out for a Hero” and Deniece Williams’ “Let’s Hear It For The Boy”. But the biggest and most memorable would have to be theme master Kenny Loggins, who came out on top with his title track. This song accompanies the sheer euphoria that came with a town of high schoolers finally being able to cut loose on prom night.

2. “Don’t You (Forget About Me)” ““ Simple Minds

– The Breakfast Club (1985)

Billy Idol and Bryan Ferry both refused to record this 1985 song, passing it on to Scottish rock band Simple Minds, giving them their only Billboard number one single. It is best known for being played during the opening and closing credits of the John Hughes film The Breakfast Club. Clearly one of the quintessential defining songs of the decade, it is featured as the gang leave Saturday detention and head their separate ways. Judd Nelson’s character throws his fist into the air as he walks through the football field before the credits roll, creating one of the most memorable film images from the 80s.

1. “Ghostbusters” ““ Ray Parker Jr.

– Ghostbusters (1984)

The top spot goes to the song that forever asked everyone, “who you gonna call” when “there’s something strange in your neighbourhood?” Oscar-nominated Ray Parker Jr. wrote the theme tune to the fantasy comedy smash hit Ghostbusters. Though causing friction over similarities to the Huey Lewis track “I Want a New Drug,” Ghostbusters is evidently one of the best-known theme tunes in cinema history.

– K.P.