August 2, 2006

The Goonies

gooniesA slice of tween-age nostalgia for some, The Goonies is a suburban, subterranean adventure story, created by three of the most potent filmmakers of the 1980s: Screenwriter Chris Columbus (who had just written Gremlins), Steven Spielberg, who wrote the story and exec produced, and co-producer/director Richard Donner (Superman 1 and 2, The Omen, and Ladyhawke.)
I had only seen the movie all the way through once or twice before, so I didn't appreciate it in the same way that Em did (she had the VHS tape on a continuous loop as a child). I thought it was occasionally amusing and completely harmless. I really appreciated the location shooting for "Astoria Oregon"-- all the aboveground scenes have a wonderful rainy, foggy look. I also appreciated the foul language-- the kids say "shit" over and over, which felt authentic to me. Speaking of dialog, Eve pointed out the many scenes where all the kids are talking/yelling at once. While this is a realistic depiction of the way teenagers talk (unlike Chris Columbus's Harry Potter movies, for example), it's also grating and incomprehensible. The movie also has no ending-- they find the pirate treasure, the Fratellis arrive, and then the cave collapses and they all escape.
The score by Dave Grusin (Tootsie, Heaven Can Wait, The Goodbye Girl) feels simplistic, crude, and half-baked. (Brattle Theater with Em, Amy, Eve, and Brenda)