The Goonies (1985)
Updated: Jul 31, 2019
It’s been over 30 years since I last watched The Goonies. We had a copy on well worn VHS that came out of its box most weekends. You’d think then that I’d remember it well. The gist yes, but the details have been erased, which is what makes reliving it so much fun. It’s not a great film, but it’s different when you discover something as a child, the quality doesn’t matter as much, it’s something that speaks to you regardless. Now I grew up in Manchester, far from this seemingly exciting American suburb on the screen. The kids think their town is boring, but to me it was another world. One with big unusual looking houses, wide streets, bikes and adventure. Oh boy the adventure, the Spielberg kind (credited as a co-writer, but his stamp is all over it), wondrous and over the top. The Goonies live in a space without parents, although their escapades are in aid of them, but the screen time is all theirs, misfit kids on a treasure trail intent on making the most of “our time”. Cue hefty doses of slapstick, teen movie tropes, booby traps, a rousing fantasy score and smaltzy sentimentality. I’d be lying if I said I enjoyed this as much as I did when I was a kid, but honestly it was close, it really stands up, good clean full blown fun. Childhood wonder should never leave you and Goonies... never die.