Honestly, you might as well ask the questions what big scenes in Stranger Things are not a reference to an 80’s movie. So much of this show takes its inspirations from the late 70’s and early 80’s sci-fi and horror movies in the best possible way. Once you start making the connections, you won’t be able to unsee some of the connections to famous greats like writer Stephen King, producer Steven Spielberg, and even from the horror movie Carrie. Some of these films hit theaters in the late 70’s but became such big sensations they held over into the 80’s and even became sci-fi or horror classics! Check out all the finer details about what inspired some of these great scenes in Stranger Things!
In Stranger Things What Are All Of The Big Scenes That Reference An ’80s Movie?
Alien 1979 and Predator 1987
In Stranger Things, the faceless creature it seems is inspired by the first two Alien films and Predator. There are obvious design and trait similarities including the sticky residue coming from the creature which it uses to trap victims. Additionally, the faceless creature uses humans as live incubators just like in the Alien movies. Lastly, the faceless creature springs out an egg that peels into four corners, the same as the creature in the Alien movies.
In Stranger Things, you might notice that the character Elle is a hybrid of two of Stephen King’s best stories. Carrie and Firestarter are Stephen King’s stories about girls with telekinetic abilities, and inspired the character of Elle, though Elle leans more to Carrie. Both characters have skills with much broader range and at the same time, both have a sheltered upbringing. Both are also sweet-natured but can be violent if need be.
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This classic story by Steven Spielberg can be considered the mother lode of all the ‘80s movies references in Stranger Things. Hawkins, Indiana has the same physical terrain as that of the California suburb in E.T., even the emotional aspect of it. Some of the scenes that mirrored that of the E.T. movie includes with Elle on Mike’s bicycle working telekinetic magic, reaching another dimension using a crude communication device and Elle dressing up wearing a wig.
Aside from Carrie, Stranger Things draw scenes from Stephen King’s Firestarter. There are quite a number of the scenes and aspects of the TV series that are closely referenced to that of the movie. For example, Elle is of roughly the same age as that of Drew Barrymore in the Firestarter. At the same time, creators of the TV series pick up the idea of relating psychic ability with nose bleeds. The apparatus uses with Elle when she’s monitored in the lab also have a strong resemblance to the brain sensors used in the movie.
A Nightmare On Elm Street, 1984
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When Elle tries to access the Upside Down using sensory deprivation, she is vulnerable to a creature haunting her. She also needs someone to pull her out whenever things are becoming dangerous. This is an obvious reference to that of Freddy Krueger in the movie A Nightmare on Elm Street. Just like in the movie, trust is needed for a strategy to stop the creature, and that’s what Joyce and Elle have between them.