I grew up in the 80’s as well and I do remember the feeling of going to…Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, Batman, Back to the Future. However, don’t forget that for every one of those now-classic Spielberg/Tim Burton/Robert Zemeckis films, there were PLENTY (PLENTY!!) of really bad sci-fi/fantasy films in the 80’s that actually were playing in theatres as well.
Anyone remember The Dungeonmaster?? How about Troll? Conan the Destroyer? While now, films like those are considered “awesomely Bad 80’s movies”, back in the 80’s, they were just BAD films. For every classic Summer film, like the Joe Dante directed Gremlins, there were three Breakin’ 2: Electric Boogaloos in theatres.
We complain about sequels now, the 80’s had plenty of sequels - just look at how many lame Friday the 13th sequels came out in the 80’s (which was, well, pretty much all of them) — Karate Kid 2, etc, etc.
Yes, the 80’s had some great blockbuster films made by the aforementioned directors, as well as a few very creative standouts like Buckaroo Banzai. But there were also plenty of lame films back then that, in my memory, we did seem to blandly sit through, that still made a lot of money. The top grossing film of 1987 was Three Men and a Baby — I’ll leave it at that