Saturday, June 29, 2013

Penny Thoughts ‘13—The Goonies (1985) ***

PG, 114 min.
Director: Richard Donner
Writers: Chris Columbus, Steven Spielberg
Starring: Sean Astin, Josh Brolin, Jeff Cohen, Corey Feldman, Kerri Green, Martha Plimpton, Ke Huy Quan, John Matuszak, Robert Davi, Joe Pantoliano, Anne Ramsey, Lupe Ontieros, Mary Ellen Trainor, Keith Walker, Curtis Hanson

They just don’t make this type of movie anymore—the tweenie summer adventure. “The Goonies” isn’t a great movie, but it’s a hell of a lot of fun. It embodies going to the movies in the summer for me. Today it’s either the big budget extravaganza for the kids, or the latest CGI 3D animation. Well, I suppose they’re both in 3D now. Now, I’m depressed.

What ever happened to the movies about the kids having adventures? “The Goonies” is one of the quintessential kids adventure movies. It has all the hallmarks—the summer rainstorm, the cast of every caste of nerd, the crippled hero (this time with asthma) the opposite older sibling who tries to ruin the plans of the heroes, the prepubescent kissing, the not so bright but dangerous adults to be thwarted, the misunderstood scary adult, and treasure. You can never forget the treasure.

What this movie also has that today’s movies lack are kids with potty mouths. You could invent a successful drinking game with the number of times somebody utters the word “shit” in this movie. Kids don’t say words like that anymore in movies. We didn’t talk like that around adults, but we certainly knew the words and used them whenever we felt we were safe from adult scrutiny, just as the Goonies do here. It’s funny that the days when kids used to swear seem like the more innocent times.

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