The Goonies (1985)

by Jack Percy

If you were a child in 1985,  you most probably didn't miss the Goonies craze - the shirts, the caps, and of course the movie!  I found it slightly scary at the time, but even more so loved it.

The title comes from the main characters being from the Goon Docks neighbourhood of Astoria, Oregon, where a group of children are trying to save their homes from making way to the expanding Astoria Countryclub.  They see their chance when in the attic, they discover a map and a doubloon leading to the buried treasure of One-Eyed Willie, a 17th century pirate. 

One of their journey's first stops is an old restaurant, where unbeknownst to them, a family of criminals called the Fratelli's have made their hide-out. 

And so, when from the restaurant the kids continue on their treasure hunt through an underground cavern, they do so while being followed by the Fratelli's who would later take their treasure from them. 

Principal photography on The Goonies lasted 5 months, and then there was an additional 6 weeks of ADR recording.  The script was very long and many scenes were cut from the final version.  Chunk for example can be heard near the end talking about an "octopus" event - that is because originally there was such a scene which got cut.  

Director Richard Donner had to coach the child actors to get realistic performances out of them, and one of his techniques included not letting the actors see One-eyed Willie's pirate ship until they were actually shooting the scene.  This way the  Goonies really would be surprized and amazed when they see the ship.  (This ship was destroyed after shooting because they couldn't find anyone who wanted it.  How I want it now :( )

If you're like me, the original is good enough and you have no particular interest in a sequel to this movie.  However, talks of a sequel have been confirmed and denied many times over the years.  Seems though that not many of the original cast members have shown any interest in a sequel. 

Cyndi Lauper, actress and singer, also appears briefly on a television screen in The Goonies.  She's singing the single, "The Goonies 'R' Good Enough", that was released at the same time as the film.  However, before its inclusion on The Essential Cyndi Lauper in 2003, the song was considered a rarity among fans, having never appeared on any of Lauper's albums or compilations. 

This may have something to do with Cyndi hating the song, which may have to do with her experience of filming the two part video being less than enjoyable.  Apparently Richard Donner was a very pushy director who wanted things done a certain way and pushed her to keep going when she was exhausted. 

After 1986 she refused to play the song live.  She finally incorporated it back into her live show during a 2005 concert in Baltimore, Maryland. Fans kept screaming to hear the song, and she sang it acapella. She has since incorporated the song back into her live set, due to overwhelming fan recognition.