10 movies to watch if you love Eddie Munson
WARNING! This listing contains SPOILERS for stranger things season 4.
A season 4 addition to Stranger Things’ Beloved ensemble, Eddie Munson quickly soared into viewers’ hearts like a bat out of hell (too soon?). His departure in the finale left fans in mourning, cursing the Duffer Brothers and simply wanting more.
Eddie is a refreshingly nuanced take on an established archetype, and audiences will no doubt be looking to fill the void of Eddie’s size in their streaming queue. Fortunately, there are several films featuring heroic rockers, Dungeons & Dragonsstyle adventure, or a complex image of the persecuted outsider that Eddie embodies.
ten Paradise Lost: The Robin Hood Hills Child Murders (1996)
Stream on HBO Max, Hoopla and DIRECTV
The first of a trio of true crime documentaries, Paradise Lost: The Robin Hood Hills Child Murders follows the case of the West Memphis Three, a group of teenagers accused of murdering three young boys in Arkansas. In a real-life case of Satanic Panic, Jessie Misskelley, Jason Baldwin, and Damien Echolls were charged with committing the crimes as part of a cult Satanic ritual.
Echolls forms loose inspiration for Eddie Munson in stranger things. An outsider interested in heavy metal music and the works of Aleister Crowley and Anton LaVey, Echolls became a scapegoat for West Memphis’ conservative community. The compelling documentaries explore prejudice against young people, like Damien and Eddie, who fail to conform to the expectations of their communities. In particular, all three lost paradise the films feature a Metallica soundtrack; it was the first time the metal band had allowed their music to be used in a film.
9 It’s Spinal Tap (1984)
Available for purchase on AppleTV and Amazon Prime Video
Rob Reiner’s iconic mockumentary is guaranteed to be on Eddie’s checklist at the video store. It’s Spinal Tap hilariously skewers the titular heavy metal band (and a few real-life bands), whose ridiculousness is surpassed only by their pretentiousness.
Between amps that go all the way to 11 and hijinks with miniature bread, one of the film’s funniest sequences features a mythical musical introduction to an 18-inch recreation of Stonehenge. It’s easy to imagine Eddie Munson, playing his dungeon master persona, presenting his band Corroded Coffin with the same gravitas. For those who never tire of visionary rockers, It’s Spinal Tap gets a legacy sequel.
8 Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure (1989)
Stream on Amazon Prime Video, Showtime, Hoopla and Max Go
At the heart of the Bill & Ted franchise is the radical idea that music can change the world for the better – especially if you can have Eddie Van Halen. The first payment, Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure, follows two metalhead burnouts on a righteous quest to pass their high school history report. Using a time machine, they present the philosophical lyrics of Kansas to Socrates, give Beethoven access to an electric keyboard, and glimpse a future where their band, Wyld Stallyns, creates a utopian society.
Bill S. Preston, Esq. and Ted “Theodore” Logan, although no one expects much from them, are extraordinarily friendly. Much like Eddie, they turn out to be brave and loyal friends, and much more than meets the eye. Not to be outdone Excellent adventure outrageous premise, bonkers, existential sequel Bill and Ted’s fake trip takes the duo through heaven, hell and other dimensions. Eddie, another endearing misfit, would fit right into Bill and Ted’s adventures and could probably teach them a little something about the guitar.
seven Wayne’s World (1992)
Available to rent on Amazon Prime Video, AppleTV and YouTube
The dynamic duo of SNL anchor Wayne and Garth became a big-screen hit Wayne’s World with their typical Midwestern slacker/rocker humor. Featuring exquisite cameos from legendary rockers Meat Loaf and Alice Cooper, Wayne’s World is, in many ways, a love letter to rock and roll.
Whether it’s trying to play “Stairway to Heaven” in a music store or banging your head to “Bohemian Rhapsody” in the car, Wayne’s World is full of iconic musical sequences that stand up to Eddie’s performance of “Master of Puppets”.
6 Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World (2010)
Stream on Starz and DIRECTV
Navigating the trappings of being young can feel like life or death, especially when you’re a) blamed for the satanic deaths of local teens by an interdimensional dark wizard or b) forced to fight the seven evil exes of your love to win her heart. The frenetic and colorful comedy of Edgar Wright Scott Pilgrim vs the World lends epic, playful weight to youthful romance.
Armed with a bass guitar, Scott takes on a series of increasingly powerful romantic rivals like fighters in a video game – or obstacles in a D&D adventure. Scott and Eddie Munson infuse their everyday experience with a mythical gravity, and both must overcome their instincts for self-preservation to make the ultimate sacrifice. In addition, Scott Pilgrim vs the World features an impressive soundtrack, which includes several excellent original tunes.
5 Dazed and Confused (1993)
Stream on Peacock
Following a big casting call for teenagers on the last day of high school in Austin, Texas, Dizzy and confused beautifully captures the 1970s and the boredom of youth. While the film’s highest stakes include hazing, finding a ride home from a party, and getting Aerosmith tickets, its characters grapple with some of the same internal conflicts as Eddie and his friends.
One of the main characters, football star Randall “Pink” Floyd, wonders whether to sign a drug-free pledge to stay at any given time. Like Eddie Munson, he fears giving up his individuality to mindlessly conform. Meanwhile, Dazed and confused features an iconic rock soundtrack, featuring songs from Alice Cooper, KISS, Foghat and Black Sabbath.
4 Tenacious D in Destiny’s Choice (2006)
Available to rent on AppleTV and Amazon Prime Video
If Eddie Munson had survived Stranger Things’ fourth season, he might have grown to create a band much like Tenacious D. Eddie actor Joseph Quinn even admitted that watching Jack Black in school of rock inspired him to play the guitar (via Weekly entertainment). Tenacious D in Fate’s Choice is a sprawling musical fantasy adventure featuring cameos from rock royalty like Ronnie James Dio and Meatloaf, plus a hailed guest appearance from Dave Grohl as Satan.
Jack Black and Kyle Gass are delightful as the eponymous rock duo, who shrugged off criticism from a conservative Midwestern town to become rock legends. Tenacious D in Fate’s Choice perfectly blends the key aspects of Eddie’s personality: rock and roll, epic fantasy adventure and refusal to conform.
3 Studio 666 (2022)
Available to rent on AMC On Demand, AppleTV and Amazon Prime Video
In what could be considered a spiritual sequel to Tenacious D in Fate’s Choice, Workshop 666 is a savage comedy-horror built around the music of Foo Fighters. The film follows fictionalized versions of the real-life rock band, cataloging the strange and supernatural events that occur in the house where they chose to record their 10th album.
Workshop 666 is full of rock music Easter eggs that Eddie Munson would love. Themes of demonic possession, good versus evil, and face-melting guitar solos Workshop 666 an ideal watch for Eddie fans.
2 SLC Punk (1998)
Stream on HBO Max
One of Eddie Munson’s best qualities is his unwavering commitment to authenticity; he never ceases to be unashamedly himself. Characters from the indie cult classic SLC Punk, similarly, strive to be themselves – punk anarchists – in Salt Lake City, very religious and conservative. Navigating parental disappointment, fear of selling out, and audience accusations of devil worship, lead character Stevo (Matthew Lillard) brings the humor and complexity reminiscent of Eddie.
SLC Punk also lets its characters grow from their youthful, idealistic visions of anarchy, rebellion, and fashion. Stevo must reckon with tragedy and violence, which leads him to reconsider his punk identity and ultimately conform to societal norms. Eddie will be frozen in time as a teenager, but over time he would have become a truly thoughtful and mature version of himself.
1 Legend (1985)
Available to rent on AppleTV and Amazon Prime Video
Eddie Munson, as the leader of the Hellfire Club and dungeon master of the Cult of Vecna campaign, has a wild imagination for fantasy and adventure. Given its dark, stark visuals and epic fantasy storyline, it might have found inspiration for its campaigns in Ridley Scott’s 1985 sword and sorcery film. Legend.
With goblins and demons that feel right at home in a D&D Monster manual, Legend features noble characters struggling to fend off the onset of eternal darkness in their fantasy realm. Tim Curry amazes as the Dark Lord, a Satan-inspired monster and a Vecna-level threat.
NEXT: 10 Most Heartbreaking Quotes In Stranger Things Season 4, Vol. 2
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