Best Thriller Movies of 1989

1.

The Abyss

6.1
7.6/10

A civilian oil rig crew is recruited to conduct a search and rescue effort when a nuclear submarine mysteriously sinks. One diver soon finds himself on a spectacular odyssey 25,000 feet below the ocean's surface where he confronts a mysterious force that has the power to change the world or destroy it.

Starring: Ed Harris, Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio, Michael Biehn, Leo Burmester, Todd Graff
Directed by: James Cameron
Release date: 1989-08-09
2.

Lethal Weapon 2

5.8
7.2/10

In the opening chase, Martin Riggs and Roger Murtaugh stumble across a trunk full of Krugerrands. They follow the trail to a South African diplomat who's using his immunity to conceal a smuggling operation. When he plants a bomb under Murtaugh's toilet, the action explodes!

Starring: Mel Gibson, Danny Glover, Joe Pesci, Joss Ackland, Derrick O'Connor
Directed by: Richard Donner
Release date: 1989-07-07
3.

Heathers

5.3
7.3/10

A girl who halfheartedly tries to be part of the "in crowd" of her school meets a rebel who teaches her a more devious way to play social politics: by killing the popular kids.

Starring: Winona Ryder, Christian Slater, Shannen Doherty, Lisanne Falk, Kim Walker
Directed by: Michael Lehmann
Release date: 1989-03-31
4.

The 'Burbs

5.0
6.9/10

When secretive new neighbors move in next door, suburbanite Ray Peterson and his friends let their paranoia get the best of them as they start to suspect the newcomers of evildoings and commence an investigation. But it's hardly how Ray, who much prefers drinking beer, reading his newspaper and watching a ball game on the tube expected to spend his vacation.

Starring: Tom Hanks, Bruce Dern, Carrie Fisher, Rick Ducommun, Corey Feldman
Directed by: Joe Dante
Release date: 1989-02-17
5.

The War of the Roses

5.0
6.8/10

The Roses, Barbara and Oliver, live happily as a married couple. Then she starts to wonder what life would be like without Oliver, and likes what she sees. Both want to stay in the house, and so they begin a campaign to force each other to leave. In the middle of the fighting is D'Amato, the divorce lawyer. He gets to see how far both will go to get rid of the other, and boy do they go far.

Starring: Kathleen Turner, Michael Douglas, Danny DeVito, Marianne Sägebrecht, Dan Castellaneta
Directed by: Danny DeVito
Release date: 1989-12-08
6.

Sea of Love

4.9
6.8/10

Seen-it-all New York detective Frank Keller is unsettled - he has done twenty years on the force and could retire, and he hasn't come to terms with his wife leaving him for a colleague. Joining up with an officer from another part of town to investigate a series of murders linked by the lonely hearts columns he finds he is getting seriously and possibly dangerously involved with Helen, one of the main suspects.

Starring: Al Pacino, Ellen Barkin, John Goodman, Michael Rooker, William Hickey
Directed by: Harold Becker
Release date: 1989-09-15
7.

Dead Calm

4.9
6.8/10

An Australian couple take a sailing trip in the Pacific to forget about a terrible accident. While on the open sea, in dead calm, they come across a ship with one survivor who is not at all what he seems.

Starring: Nicole Kidman, Sam Neill, Billy Zane, George Shevtsov, Rod Mullinar
Directed by: Phillip Noyce
Release date: 1989-04-07
8.

Black Rain

4.8
6.6/10

Two New York cops get involved in a gang war between members of the Yakuza, the Japanese Mafia. They arrest one of their killers and are ordered to escort him back to Japan. However, in Japan he manages to escape, and as they try to track him down, they get deeper and deeper into the Japanese Mafia scene and they have to learn that they can only win by playing the game—the Japanese way.

Starring: Michael Douglas, Andy García, Kate Capshaw, Shigeru Kôyama, John Spencer
Directed by: Ridley Scott
Release date: 1989-09-22
9.

Road House

4.8
6.6/10

The Double Deuce is the meanest, loudest and rowdiest bar south of the Mason-Dixon Line, and Dalton (Patrick Swayze) has been hired to clean it up. He might not look like much, but the Ph.D.-educated bouncer proves he's more than capable -- busting the heads of troublemakers and turning the roadhouse into a jumping hot-spot. But Dalton's romance with the gorgeous Dr. Clay (Kelly Lynch) puts him on the bad side of cutthroat local big shot Brad Wesley (Ben Gazzara).

Starring: Patrick Swayze, Kelly Lynch, Sam Elliott, Ben Gazzara, Marshall R. Teague
Directed by: Rowdy Herrington
Release date: 1989-05-19
10.

Licence to Kill

4.7
6.6/10

When drug lord Franz Sanchez exacts his brutal vengeance on Bond's friend Felix Leiter, 007 resigns from the British Secret Service and begins a fierce vendetta against the master criminal. Bond won't be satisfied until Sanchez is defeated, and to accomplish this aim he allies himself with a beautiful pilot and Sanchez's sexy girlfriend.

Starring: Timothy Dalton, Carey Lowell, Robert Davi, Talisa Soto, Anthony Zerbe
Directed by: John Glen
Release date: 1989-07-07
11.

Kickboxer

4.7
6.4/10

If your enemy refuses to be humbled... Destroy him. Accompanied by his brother Kurt (Van Damme), American kickboxing champion Eric Sloane (Dennis Alexio), arrives in Thailand to defeat the Eastern warriors at their own sport. His opponent: ruthless fighter and Thai champion, Tong Po. Tong not only defeats Eric, he paralyzes him for life. Crazed with anger, Kurt vows revenge.

Starring: Jean-Claude Van Damme, Dennis Alexio, Dennis Chan, Michel Qissi, Haskell V. Anderson III
Directed by: David Worth, Jean-Claude Van Damme, Mark DiSalle
Release date: 1989-04-20
12.

Blind Fury

4.6
6.3/10

A blind Vietnam vet, trained as a swordfighter, comes to America and helps to rescue the son of a fellow soldier.

Starring: Rutger Hauer, Terry O'Quinn, Brandon Call, Noble Willingham, Lisa Blount
Directed by: Phillip Noyce
Release date: 1989-08-17
13.

Turner & Hooch

4.5
6.1/10

Scott Turner has 3 days left in the local police department before he moves to a bigger city to get some "real" cases, not just misdemeanors. Then Amos Reed is murdered, and Scott Turner sets himself on the case. The closest thing to a witness in the case is Amos Reed's dog, Hooch, which Scott Turner has to take care of if it's going to avoid being "put to sleep".

Starring: Tom Hanks, Mare Winningham, Craig T. Nelson, Scott Paulin, John McIntire
Directed by: Roger Spottiswoode
Release date: 1989-07-28
14.

Leviathan

4.3
5.8/10

Underwater deep-sea miners encounter a Soviet wreck and bring back a dangerous cargo to their base on the ocean floor with horrifying results. The crew of the mining base must fight to survive against a genetic mutation that hunts them down one by one.

Starring: Peter Weller, Richard Crenna, Amanda Pays, Ernie Hudson, Daniel Stern
Directed by: George P. Cosmatos
Release date: 1989-03-17
15.

Star Trek V: The Final Frontier

4.1
5.5/10

Capt. Kirk and his crew must deal with Mr. Spock's half brother who kidnaps three diplomats and hijacks the Enterprise in his obsessive search for God.

Starring: William Shatner, Leonard Nimoy, DeForest Kelley, Laurence Luckinbill, Nichelle Nichols
Directed by: William Shatner
Release date: 1989-06-09
16.

The Punisher

4.1
5.7/10

The avenging angel of Marvel Comics fame comes brilliantly to life in this searing action-adventure thriller! Dolph Lundgren stars as Frank Castle, a veteran cop who loses his entire family to a mafia car bomb. Only his ex-partner believes Castle survived the blast to become THE PUNISHER ... a shadowy, invincible fighter against evil who lives for total revenge on his mob enemies.

Starring: Dolph Lundgren, Louis Gossett Jr., Jeroen Krabbé, Kim Miyori, Bryan Marshall
Directed by: Mark Goldblatt
Release date: 1989-10-05
17.

Music Box

3.9
7.3/10

A lawyer defends her father accused of war crimes, but there is more to the case than she suspects.

Starring: Jessica Lange, Armin Mueller-Stahl, Donald Moffat, Lukas Haas, Cheryl Lynn Bruce
Directed by: Costa-Gavras
Release date: 1989-12-22
18.

A Nightmare on Elm Street: The Dream Child

3.9
5.2/10

Alice, having survived the previous installment of the Nightmare series, finds the deadly dreams of Freddy Krueger starting once again. This time, the taunting murderer is striking through the sleeping mind of Alice's unborn child. His intention is to be "born again" into the real world. The only one who can stop Freddy is his dead mother, but can Alice free her spirit in time to save her own son?

Starring: Robert Englund, Lisa Wilcox, Erika Anderson, Valorie Armstrong, Michael Ashton
Directed by: Stephen Hopkins
Release date: 1989-08-11
19.

Miracle Mile

3.8
7.0/10

After 30 years of searching, Harry has finally met the girl of his dreams. Unfortunately, before they even have a chance to go on their first date, Harry intercepts some chilling news: WWIII has begun and nuclear missiles will destroy Los Angeles in less than an hour!

Starring: Anthony Edwards, Mare Winningham, John Agar, Lou Hancock, Mykelti Williamson
Directed by: Steve De Jarnatt
Release date: 1989-05-19
20.

Apartment Zero

3.8
6.9/10
Apartment Zero
The owner of a failing cinema and his mysterious boarder are caught up in the political intrigue of Argentina.
Starring: Hart Bochner, Colin Firth, Dora Bryan, Liz Smith, Mirella D'Angelo
Directed by: Martin Donovan
Release date: 1989-09-02

Also check Best thriller movies of 1988.

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