One of the greatest appeals of the Netflix original series Stranger Things is the numerous nods to the great movies of the 80s. In an interview with Variety, the Duffer Brothers revealed their original pitch for the series was “really dark Amblin,” referring to Steven Spielberg classics like The Goonies and E.T. Stranger Things pulls this off artfully, telling a new and fresh story with an air of nostalgia that makes us wants to be kids hunting monsters in our basements and backyards again.
From the main title practically ripped from the cover of a Stephen King novel, to the music, clothes, posters, and other elements scattered throughout the series, there is no shortage of references to the beloved movies full of wonder, adventure, and danger from our childhoods. But, as Ulysse Thevenon points out in his video (below), Stranger Things also borrows lighting, atmosphere, and other visual cues to create something that pays homage to the movies we grew up with and feels strangely familiar.
So before you go out looking for the demogorgon, watch this video for a supercut of shots from Stranger Things compared side-by-side with iconic scenes from Poltergeist, Alien, Explorers, Close Encounters of the Third Kind, A Nightmare on Elm Street, Stand By Me, and more.