The Goonies is a 1985 American adventure comedy film co-produced and directed by Richard Donner from a screenplay by Chris Columbus, based on a story by
Spielberg. In the film, kids who live in the "Goon Docks" neighborhood of Astoria, Oregon, attempt to save their homes from foreclosure and, in doing so, they discover an old treasure map that takes them on an adventure to unearth the long-lost fortune of One-Eyed Willy, a legendary 17th-century
pirate. During the adventure, they are chased by a family of criminals who want the treasure for themselves.
Produced by Spielberg's Amblin Entertainment, Warner Bros. released the film theatrically on June 7, 1985, in the United States. The film grossed $125 million worldwide on a budget of $19 million and has since become a cult film. In 2017, the film was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant".
Facing foreclosure of their homes in the Goon Docks area of Astoria, Oregon, to an expanding country club, a group of children who call themselves "the Goonies" gather for a final weekend together. The Goonies are Mikey Walsh, his older brother Brand, Data, Mouth, Chunk, Andy and Stef.
Rummaging through the Walshes' attic, they come across a 1632 doubloon and an old treasure map purporting to lead to the treasure of legendary pirate "One-Eyed Willy", believed to be located somewhere nearby. Mikey considers One-Eyed Willy to be the original Goonie. The kids overpower and bind Brand and make their way to an abandoned restaurant on the coast that coincides with the map; Brand soon follows alongside Andy, a cheerleader with a crush on him; and Stef, Andy's friend. The group eventually discovers that the derelict restaurant is a hideout of the Fratelli crime family: Francis, Jake, and their mother. The Goonies find a tunnel in the basement and follow it, but when Chunk flags down a motorist to go to the sheriff’s station, he gets abducted by the Fratellis and imprisoned with their hulking, deformed, younger brother Sloth. The Fratellis interrogate Chunk until he reveals where the Goonies have gone, and begin pursuit. Chunk is left behind with Sloth, but befriends him. After Sloth frees both of them, Chunk calls the sheriff, and both follow the trail of the Fratellis.
The Goonies evade several deadly booby traps along the tunnels, while staying ahead of the Fratellis. Finally, they reach the grotto where Willy's pirate ship, the Inferno, is anchored. The group discovers that the ship is filled with treasure, and they start filling their pockets, but Mikey warns them not to take any on a set of scales in front of Willy, considering that to be their tribute to him. As they leave the ship, the Fratellis appear and strip them of their loot. They start to bind the Goonies and make them walk the plank, until Chunk arrives with Sloth and distracts the Fratellis long enough for the Goonies to jump overboard and swim to safety. Brand saves Andy from drowning and she kisses him. The Fratellis proceed to grab all the treasure they can, including those on Willy's scales; this triggers another booby trap which causes the grotto to cave in. With Sloth's help, the Goonies and Fratellis barely escape.
The two groups emerge on Astoria's beach, where they reunite with the Goonies' families and the police. The Fratellis are arrested, but Chunk prevents Sloth from also being taken; he invites Sloth to live with him, which Sloth accepts. Just as Mikey’s father is about to sign the foreclosure papers, the Walshes' housekeeper, Rosalita, discovers that Mikey's marble bag is filled with gems he took from the ship and had not been seized by the Fratellis. Mikey's father triumphantly rips up the papers, declaring that they have enough money to negate the foreclosure. As they are regaling the tale of their adventure to the disbelieving press and police, they notice the Inferno, having broken free of the grotto, sailing off on its own in the distance.
Principal photography on The Goonies began on October 22, 1984, and lasted five months. An additional six weeks of audio dubbing and recording were used. The shooting script was lengthy, at more than 120 pages, to which several sequences were eventually cut from the final theatrical version. During the film's dénouement, mention is made of an octopus, which refers to a scene that was excised from the final cut.
In the documentary The Making of The Goonies, Richard Donner noted both the difficulties and pleasures of working with so many child actors. He praised them for their energy and excitement, but also said that they were also unruly when brought together. As a result, the documentary frequently showed him coaching the actors and revealing some techniques he used to create realistic performances. One of these tricks involved One-Eyed Willy's pirate ship, which was actually a full-sized replica of a pirate ship created under the direction of production designer J. Michael Riva. Donner restricted the actors from seeing the ship until they filmed the scene wherein it is revealed to their characters; the characters' first glimpse of the ship was also the actors' first view of it, bringing about a more realistic performance. However, that particular scene in the final cut was actually the second take, due to the cast feeling so overwhelmed at first sight that the scene had to be
re-shot. The entire set was scrapped after shooting because they could not find anyone who wanted it.
In his book There and Back Again, Sean Astin claimed that Donner and Spielberg were "like co-directors" on the film as he compared and contrasted their styles when directing scenes.
Some of the on-location filming was done in Astoria. The interior and exterior of the old Clatsop County Jail features as the holding place of Jake Fratelli at the start of the film. (The building was later converted into the Oregon Film Museum, which opened on the 25th anniversary of The Goonies with memorabilia from this and other local films.) The museum where Mikey's father works is, in reality, the Captain George Flavel House Museum. The Walsh family home is a real home on the eastern end of the town. The road leading to the home was closed to tours in 2015. The scenes along the coast were filmed in Oregon, but they were a considerable distance from Astoria. The Goonies bicycle to Ecola State Park (in reality, over 26 miles south of Astoria) and then find the starting location of the map using Haystack Rock as a guide. Underground scenes were filmed at Warner Bros. Studios in Burbank, California, including the cavernous set where the Goonies find One-Eyed Willy's ship, which was in Stage 16, one of the largest sound stages in the United States. The final scene was shot at Goat Rock State Beach in Sonoma County, California.
The film also marked Wes Takahashi's first major motion picture as an animation supervisor for Industrial Light & Magic.
- Sean Astin as Michael "Mikey" Walsh, the asthmatic leader of the Goonies
- Josh Brolin as Brandon "Brand" Walsh, a high-school athlete and Mikey's older brother and minder
- Jeff Cohen as Lawrence "Chunk" Cohen, a clumsy, gluttonous member of the Goonies and habitual fabulist
- Corey Feldman as Clark "Mouth" Devereaux, a Goonie nicknamed for his cheeky tongue
- Jonathan Ke Huy Quan as Richard "Data" Wang, a James Bond fanatic and amateur gadgeteer Goonie
- Kerri Green as Andrea Theresa "Andy" Carmichael, a high-school cheerleader and Brand's love interest
- Martha Plimpton as Stephanie "Stef" Steinbrenner, Andy's best friend
- John Matuszak as Lotney "Sloth" Fratelli, the deformed and abused, but child-hearted, son of the Fratelli family who Chunk befriends
- Anne Ramsey as Mama Fratelli, an Italian-born crime matriarch
- Robert Davi as Jake Fratelli, Mama Fratelli's son, a counterfeiter, and a recently escaped fugitive
- Joe Pantoliano as Francis Fratelli, Mama Fratelli's favorite son
- Mary Ellen Trainor as Irene Walsh, Mikey and Brand's fussy mother
- Keith Walker as Irving Walsh, Mikey and Brand's father and a curator at the local history museum
- Lupe Ontiveros as Rosalita, the Walsh family's Mexican housekeeper
- Steve Antin as Troy Perkins, the spoiled son of the Astoria Country Club's millionaire owner
- Curt Hanson as Mr. Perkins, Troy's millionaire father
- Michael Paul Chan as Mr. Wang, Data's father
- Charles McDaniel as Mr. Cohen, Chunk's father
- Paul Tuerpe as the Sheriff
- George Robotham as Prison Guard
- Keenan Wynn as Chester Copperpot (Uncredited)
Director Richard Donner makes a cameo appearance as a sheriff's deputy. The film's cinematographer, Nick McLean, also has a cameo as Mouth's father. The part of the dead FBI agent was performed by stuntman Ted Grossman.
CRITICAL RESPONSE & BOX OFFICE
Review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes reports that 76% of critics have given the film a positive review based on 62 reviews and 91% of the audience giving it a positive review; the average rating is 6.5/10. The critical consensus: "The Goonies is an energetic, sometimes noisy mix of Spielbergian sentiment and fun-house tricks that will appeal to kids and nostalgic adults alike." At Metacritic it has a rating score of 62 based on 13 reviews, indicating "generally favorable reviews".
Roger Ebert gave the film three stars out of four and called the film "a smooth mixture of the usual ingredients from Steven Spielberg action movies, made special because of the high-energy performances of the kids who have the adventures." Gene Siskel of the Chicago Tribune also awarded three stars out of four and wrote that after a dull start "some kind of minor movie miracle takes place, and The Goonies gets its act together as the kids stop trading wisecracks and get closer to finding their long-lost pirate treasure, thereby to help save their parents' homes. Only then do we accept The Goonies for what it is—a funny juvenile windup toy about kids in perilous, comic-book situations." Janet Maslin of The New York Times wrote that the film "has a kind of breakneck pacing that keeps it fast, funny, ingenious, entertaining, and — only a small point while the movie is in progress — almost entirely without staying power."
Variety called it "a dangerous Disneyland sort of a film stamped with the Steven Spielberg style of high fun. Like other Spielberg summer extravaganzas, pic is a roller coaster ride best enjoyed as it's speeding along. Once it stops to consider the sacred state of adolescence, it becomes painfully syrupy." Michael Wilmington of the Los Angeles Times wrote that the film "resembles nothing so much as a wildly exaggerated fun-fair ride, one that keeps comically exposing you to dangers, comically pulling you away, then, finally, with a shivering plop, deposits you on dry land, in the bosom of your family." Paul Attanasio of The Washington Post called it "an artfully crafted movie, thrumming with energy and sometimes wit, and utterly uninvolving for anyone over the age of 12." Colin Greenland reviewed The Goonies for White Dwarf and stated, "The Goonies I was unable to enjoy because of a bunch of kids yelling and screaming all the way through. Not the audience, the actors."
The Goonies grossed $9 million in its opening weekend in the U.S., second on the charts behind Rambo: First Blood Part II. It grossed $63.9 million in the United States and Canada, placing it among the top-10 highest-grossing films of
1985 and $60.6 million overseas for a worldwide gross of $125 million.
think the Goonies was more of a one off than franchise material. Hence,
Warner Bros. decision not to do a sequel or a remake, was appropriate.
Mainly because the casting and follow on might be a bit on the thin side.
Plus, production costs would probably rise, against less box office to fund
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