There are few names in Hollywood that command the respect Steven Spielberg does. As a director, his reputation precedes him and movies are almost certain to be blockbusters with his name on the roster. Even then, those elusive few films that don’t become established as prolific blockbusters usually fail to achieve commercial success because of their innovative qualities. Sometimes they’re wasted on audiences because they’re way too ahead of their time.
As well as directing movies such as Jaws and Jurassic Park, Spielberg is just as talented as a screenwriter. With his own entertainment company, Amblin, he wrote and produced numerous blockbusters that were directed by others. We pick three of the best ones that you need to watch below.
The Goonies is a cult classic from the Spielberg back catalogue. This beloved blockbuster was the springboard for many notable actors including the likes of Sean Astin and Corey Feldman. The adventure saw a group of precocious treasure hunters embark on a journey to claim the ultimate prize, but, of course, along the way they encounter a series of misfits and villains.
Surprisingly, no remake or sequel has ever been made. IMDB says that a follow-up has been scheduled for a 2027 release, though the details are thin on the ground. Licensing for the franchise has picked up, which is usually a good sign, with a series of board games now available. The Goonies is so popular with audiences that its treasure themes have even been made into a bingo game. This shows that the studio does have some plans to reinvigorate the franchise and that we may indeed see a sequel of some sort soon.
Poltergeist is one of the defining eighties horror movies, written by Spielberg but directed by Tobe Hooper. Spielberg was contractually forbidden from directing another movie while he finished off E.T. Hooper was coming off the back of filming The Texas Chainsaw Massacre and though Spielberg suggested a collaboration on a sci-fi movie, Hooper suggested a horror.
The storyline details the growing presence of a supernatural force in a house and its influence upon the inhabitants. With some of the most iconic scenes in the horror canon, it’s a must-see for avid cinephiles. The Poltergeist has gone down in history as a classic example of how to build suspense in cinema.
Ace Eli and Rodger of the Skies
This is a lesser-known movie from 1973 when Spielberg was still making a name for himself in the industry. Just after his success with Duel, it would be his first feature film credit.
A comedy adventure, the movie centres on stunt pilot Ace Eli who undergoes a journey of self-discovery in the wake of a shocking bereavement. Despite writing the movie, Spielberg was very unhappy with the outcome and said it should be buried. He would not make a movie with Twentieth Century Fox for just under 30 years as a result.
All in all, Spielberg has had an astounding career that doesn’t look to be slowing down anytime soon. Between his capabilities as a director, screenwriter and producer, the man has backed some of the most culturally significant movies of the modern era and will always be considered a pioneer in cinema.