“Martin Sheen? That’s President Kennedy you idiot!”

Couple of big steps for me on this film.  It was my first movie out to the theater with friends that weren’t my cousins.  I also got to see kids swear on screen for the first time (my mom really struggled with that later). It was also a movie that I walked into blind.  I had some friends that were REALLY excited to go and couldn’t wait to see it.  I had no idea what they were talking about, I hadn’t seen any of the trailers on television.

Things I learned from this movie:

1) The attic in my house was boring.

2) Figurines are fragile in all the wrong places.

3) “A” sharp and “B” flat are the same note.

4) Adding a pirate ship to a movie makes it awesome…no matter what.

5) Kids can be heroic too.

6) How to truffle shuffle.

Yeah.  “The Goonies“.  Still love it.

From the opening car chase montage where we meet all of the different child characters, to the elaborate automatic gate opener, to Data and his inventions, to finding the map in the attic that leads to their real adventure, the Fratellies hide out, gentle giant Sloth chained up in the basement, Chunk being tormented by the Fratellies, the “booty traps” (That’s what I said!), and a pirate ship…you really can’t go wrong with all of this stuff.  There is no way this movie gets made today.  It just sounds ridiculous.  One thing I give to the 80s…they didn’t say, “No” to much.  Take that for what it’s worth.

The score of the film was decent, but the song “Good Enough” by Cyndi Lauper puts this movie over the top for me. It’s played when they strap Brand to his chair with his own weight band, release all of the air out of the tires of his bike, and set off on their adventure to save the “Goon Docks”.  Hearing that song just brings a smile to my face.

It is one of those liberating movies that is both excellent and deluded at the same time.  The entertainment value is stellar.  The message that kids can do anything and save the day is VERY 80s.  I remember being told by all of those baby boomers that we (Gen Xers) could do anything if we “put our minds to it.”  “Goonies” completely screams that message so much so that it glorifies the crazy kid who never stops believing that this adventure is real and that this group of “The Wrong Stuff” will be the saving grace of an entire town.  “The Goldbergs” do an excellent parody of this in the episode “Goldbergs Never Say Die“.

I don’t mean to sound like I do not appreciate the movie.  I most certainly do and it will always have a special place in my movie-viewing heart.  I have just observed these things about a lot of the 80s movies regarding children heroes looking back.

I guess that the difference here is that the majority of the movies I did see with the children as the heroes were set in a fantasy type world; “The Goonies” is not.  It is meant to be a real adventure in our world in which the fate of a town’s future lies on the shoulders of a rag-tag group of very dangerous delinquents.  Dangerous is the wrong word…naive?  Sure.  Aren’t we all?

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14 thoughts on ““Martin Sheen? That’s President Kennedy you idiot!”

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