Best Thriller Movies of 1981

1.

Mad Max 2

6.1
7.6/10 IMDB

Max Rockatansky returns as the heroic loner who drives the dusty roads of a postapocalyptic Australian Outback in an unending search for gasoline. Arrayed against him and the other scraggly defendants of a fuel-depot encampment are the bizarre warriors commanded by the charismatic Lord Humungus, a violent leader whose scruples are as barren as the surrounding landscape.

Starring: Mel Gibson, Bruce Spence, Michael Preston, Max Phipps, Vernon Wells, Kjell Nilsson, Emil Minty, Virginia Hey, William Zappa, Arkie Whiteley ..
Directed by: George Miller
Release date: 1981-12-24
2.

For Your Eyes Only

5.5
6.8/10 IMDB

A British spy ship has sunk and on board was a hi-tech encryption device. James Bond is sent to find the device that holds British launching instructions before the enemy Soviets get to it first.

Starring: Roger Moore, Carole Bouquet, Chaim Topol, Lynn-Holly Johnson, Julian Glover, Cassandra Harris, Jill Bennett, Michael Gothard, John Wyman, Jack Hedley ..
Directed by: John Glen
Release date: 1981-06-23
3.

Blow Out

5.4
7.4/10 IMDB

Jack Terry is a master sound recordist who works on grade-B horror movies. Late one evening, he is recording sounds for use in his movies when he hears something unexpected through his sound equipment and records it. Curiosity gets the better of him when the media become involved, and he begins to unravel the pieces of a nefarious conspiracy. As he struggles to survive against his shadowy enemies and expose the truth, he does not know whom he can trust.

Starring: John Travolta, Nancy Allen, John Lithgow, Dennis Franz, Peter Boyden, Curt May, John Aquino, John McMartin, Deborah Everton, J. Patrick McNamara ..
Directed by: Brian De Palma
Release date: 1981-07-24
4.

Thief

5.3
7.4/10 IMDB

Frank is an expert professional safecracker, specialized in high-profile diamond heists. He plans to use his ill-gotten income to retire from crime and build a nice life for himself complete with a home, wife and kids. To accelerate the process, he signs on with a top gangster for a big score.

Starring: James Caan, Tuesday Weld, Willie Nelson, Jim Belushi, Robert Prosky, Tom Signorelli, Dennis Farina, Nick Nickeas, W.R. Brown, Norm Tobin ..
Directed by: Michael Mann
Release date: 1981-03-27
5.

Body Heat

5.3
7.4/10 IMDB

In the midst of a searing Florida heat wave, a woman convinces her lover, a small-town lawyer, to murder her rich husband.

Starring: William Hurt, Kathleen Turner, Richard Crenna, Ted Danson, J.A. Preston, Mickey Rourke, Kim Zimmer, Thom Sharp, Larry Marko, Carola McGuinness ..
Directed by: Lawrence Kasdan
Release date: 1981-08-28
6.

Halloween II

5.3
6.5/10 IMDB

After failing to kill stubborn survivor Laurie and taking a bullet or six from former psychiatrist Dr. Sam Loomis, Michael Myers has followed Laurie to the Haddonfield Memorial Hospital, where she's been admitted for Myers' attempt on her life. The institution proves to be particularly suited to serial killers, however, as Myers cuts, stabs and slashes his way through hospital staff to reach his favorite victim.

Starring: Jamie Lee Curtis, Donald Pleasence, Charles Cyphers, Jeffrey Kramer, Lance Guest, Pamela Susan Shoop, Hunter von Leer, Dick Warlock, Leo Rossi, Gloria Gifford ..
Directed by: Rick Rosenthal
Release date: 1981-10-30
7.

Absence of Malice

5.0
6.9/10 IMDB

Megan Carter is a reporter duped into running an untrue story on Michael Gallagher, a suspected racketeer. He has an alibi for the time his crime was allegedly committed—but it involves an innocent party. When he tells Carter the truth and the newspaper runs it, tragedy follows, forcing Carter to face up to the responsibilities of her job when she is confronted by Gallagher.

Starring: Paul Newman, Sally Field, Bob Balaban, Melinda Dillon, Luther Adler, Barry Primus, Josef Sommer, John Harkins, Don Hood, Wilford Brimley ..
Directed by: Sydney Pollack
Release date: 1981-11-19
8.

Nighthawks

4.7
6.4/10 IMDB

An international terrorist has New York in a grip of panic and it's up to Det. Sgt. Deke DaSilva to take him down.

Starring: Sylvester Stallone, Rutger Hauer, Billy Dee Williams, Lindsay Wagner, Persis Khambatta, Nigel Davenport, Hilarie Thompson, Joe Spinell, Walter Mathews, E. Brian Dean ..
Directed by: Bruce Malmuth
Release date: 1981-03-17
9.

My Bloody Valentine

4.6
6.3/10 IMDB

Twenty years ago in the sleepy mining town of Valentine Bluffs, a fatal mining disaster occurred on Valentine's Day while some of the crew was decorating for a party. The sole survivor of the accident killed the remaining crewmembers and warned the town not to celebrate Valentine's Day again. When a group of teenagers decides to defy that order, a murderous maniac in mining gear begins dispatching townsfolk in bloody and creative ways.

Starring: Paul Kelman, Lori Hallier, Neil Affleck, Keith Knight, Cynthia Dale, Alf Humphreys, Helene Udy, Rob Stein, Thomas Kovacs, Terry Waterland ..
Directed by: George Mihalka
Release date: 1981-02-11
10.

Friday the 13th Part 2

4.4
6.1/10 IMDB

Five years after the horrible bloodbath at Camp Crystal Lake, it seems Jason Voorhees and his demented mother are in the past. Paul opens up a new camp close to the infamous site, ignoring warnings to stay away, and a sexually-charged group of counselors follow -- including child psychologist major Ginny. But Jason has been hiding out all this time, and now he's ready for revenge.

Starring: Amy Steel, John Furey, Adrienne King, Kirsten Baker, Stuart Charno, Warrington Gillette, Walt Gorney, Marta Kober, Tom McBride, Bill Randolph ..
Directed by: Steve Miner
Release date: 1981-05-01

Also check Best thriller movies of 1982.

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