“The Goonies”

Dear Erin,

Thanks for doing the 200th post. It’s kind of amazing that we’ve already written that many, but then again, we’ve been doing this for over a year and a half. Also kind of unbelievable. But a lot has happened, more than just bonks and bruises, and I’m glad we’ve been able to document it.

This week is my last post in the summer series, and I think I’m going out on a high note: The Goonies.


This was one of the two movies I had seen before starting this series (the other being Say Anything), and I had really liked it as a kid, so I figured it was a pretty safe bet. It turns out I kind of broke my own rules for this series with the very last movie, though, because I remembered a lot about this movie. I couldn’t quite quote it from end to end, but there were a disturbing number of lines that were familiar, and as each scene ended, I knew what was coming up next.

Goonies is a cross between Raiders of the Lost Ark, an Errol Flynn movie, and a Warner Bros. cartoon, and the ending is so corny that it’s straight out of Wayne’s World (“mega happy”). But my inner eight-year-old was just as pleased with the movie as ever, because is this ever a movie for eight-year-olds. The kids go seeking buried pirate treasure, through sheer moxie survive booby traps and bad guys, and end up saving the town from the evil developer and his evil son. What’s not to love for a kid? There’s even a (rather extended) water slide scene. Ah, the 80’s. It’s nice to know that not all the kids’ movies from that decade were either stupid or psycho. This is an old-fashioned, solidly crafted adventure, like the first Pirates of the Caribbean, only more sincere and starring kids, instead of Johnny Depp. Good stuff.

Here at the end of the series, I find that I’m really glad to have done it. Each movie was worth watching for one reason or another. Say Anything and The Big Chill both shifted my perceptions of youth and aging, what is important, what is self-delusion, and how important it is to love and forgive the people in your life. Hoosiers and The Goonies have entered my list of movies I’m looking forward to sharing with LM when he’s older. Seeing This is Spinal Tap filled a significant hole in my own movie education. And, for me, An American Werewolf in London was just an unexpectedly fun, intelligent, and poignant entertainment. If I were teaching a class on classic monster movie tropes, I would absolutely look for a way to include that movie.

Besides, I’m left with a pleasant sense of having accomplished something. Maybe it’s an illusory feeling, but I’m enjoying it nonetheless. I might just do it again sometime, a la Filmspotting‘s Top 5 lists.

And now we’re back into the fall. Kids are going back to school, and one of these days it should start to cool down. My reading has picked up again, so there’s some progress on that dratted bookshelf, which is good because I was starting to seriously consider the many suggestions to just fill it up with kids’ books.



One thought on ““The Goonies”

  1. Pingback: Phase 1: The Plan | crackersisters

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