Nightwatcher's Patrol #11

The Goonies: A Retrospective
February 28, 2012

A Retrospective

Every once in a while we come across something that, while somewhat strange, also manages to capture our imaginations. The Goonies does that and then some. Released to mixed reviews in 1985, June 7th here in the U.S., this movie full of pirates, adventure and friendship has with stood the test of time and still has one of the largest cult fan followings to this day. It was directed by Richard Donner and executive produced by Steven Spielberg. A lot of you may not believe this but I used to hate this movie, mostly because it scared the crap out of me (baring in mind that I turned five the year it came out, which would have placed me in Kindergarten). Then, one day in either 2003 or 2004 I decided to rent it from my local Blockbuster Video store (when we still had one). I remembered it being scary and kind of incoherent since the kids tend to shout alot. Imagine how pleasantly surprised I was to discover that it was a great movie, despite all the shouting, and I fell instantly in love. After all, isn't this the kind of adventure that all kids want to have? Treasure maps, doubloons, greedy criminals and a grand pirate ship, it's all right here. The adventure begins now.

It All Starts Here...

Like all great journeys, it's always best to start at the beginning. We saw the Goonies solve the mystery in the modern day but our story begins further in the past, in the year 1632.

Mikey relayed the tale to us and I will do the same. Back in those days there was a famous pirate captain called "One Eyed Willie" who raided and pilfered entire villages, and sometimes even kingdoms, with his crew aboard their ship, the Inferno. They accumulated a treasure so big that it nearly filled the ship's galley. Unfortunately, their luck would not hold out forever as the English king had learned of them and their ner do well ways and sent an armada out to find and possibly destroy them. Upon locating the pirates the armada began their attack and Willie lost alot of men, so many in fact that he knew that he and what was left of his crew would not survive this battle. And so Willie was forced to make the decision that no pirate usually would, he and his remaining crew turned the ship around and fled. The armada chased the pirates across open sea, around what would some day be called the Americas and eventually to the future shores of the American Pacific coast along the future California. There the pirates steared the ship into an open cave that was big enough for it to fit, hoping to hide from the armada until they gave up the search and left. But the armada found them and began firing upon the cave, collapsing the entrance sealing the pirates and their ship inside. Over the next six months a handfull of Willie's men carved out a series of tunnels that would lead to the surface into what would someday be The Lighthouse resteraunt/the Fratelli's hide out. They brought with them a map they drew themselves and a doubloon with specially shaped puncture holes as well as their story so that none of it would be lost to the pages of time. Meanwhile, back at the Inferno Willie's greed, and possibly his vanity, had gotten the better of him and his lust for his treasure grew. He would make sure none of his men ever touched it again, by killing them one by one. Eventually this part of the story would fade into history...until about three hundred years later when someone set out to find the lost Inferno and her captive treasure.

Fast forward to the year 1935. A man named Chester Copperpot, a reclusive scavanger and adventurer, had discovered the map and doubloon leading to One Eyed Willie's treasure as well as a large skull shaped key made of copper which came to be called "Copper Bones".

Copperpot's find lead him to claim his now famous quote "I have the key to One Eyed Willie". He then set out to find the ship, her treasure and her famous captain using the information acquired from the map and doubloon but sadly, he ended up becoming another tragic part of the legend. Chester Copperpot was never seen or heard from again. However, that ending would change fifty years later.

Fast forward again, this time to the year 1985 and a quaint little hamlet called Astoria, Oregon. A section of town called the "Goondocks" is about to be leveled to make room for the expansion of the Astoria Country Club, forcing it's residents to move.

Hey you guys!

Ye intruders beware. Crushing death and grief. Soaked with the blood, of the trespassing thief

A group of outcast kids, nick named the Goonies by rich brat Troy Perkins, stumble onto the map and doubloon while rummaging in the Walsh's attic (Mr. Walsh is the town museum curator). The Walsh boys, Micheal "Mikey" and Brandon "Brand" and their friends: Clark "Mouth" Devereaux, Lawrence "Chunk" Cohen and Richard "Data" Wang decide to head out after the treasure in a last ditch effort to save their neighborhood, as well as having one last Goony adventure together. Along the way they take in the first girl Goonies, Angela "Andy" Carmicheal and Stephanie "Stef" Steinbrenner and have to outrun a family of criminals called the Fratellis. They even manage to make friends with the monterous, yet gentlemanly third Fratelli brother Lotney "Sloth" (thanks to Chunk of course).

Sloth may have turned out to be a nice guy, but he was one of the elements of this movie that scared me when I was little.

The kids discover the opening to the tunnel beneath the old restaurant, with the Fratellis hot on their heels soon after (again, thanks to Chunk). They traverse the tunnels, discovering the remains of Chester Copperpot and setting off the pirate's booty traps along the way until...they find something breath taking.

Innocent Willy, you're the first Goony

The story ends well with Mikey having saved enough wealth in jewels from the treasure to save the Goondocks. The Fratellis are arrested and Sloth gets the okay to move in with Chunk's family thus officially making him a Cohen. I've said it before and I'll say it again: all's well that ends well.

Holy Mary, mother of god!!
Look at that!

Yeah, I know I didn't have to go through the entire story line from the movie but I thought it would be kind of cool, this being a retrospective and all. Because of the movie's large cult following the DVD, with it's sweet treasure chest of bonus features, has sold a record setting number of copies. It has also recently been released on blue ray, including a 25th anniversary collectors set which includes a miniaturized version of the original movie magazine and an official Goonies board game.

By the way, I recommend checking out the bonus features because it includes the complete Cyndi Lauper music video of "The Goonies 'R' Good Enough" plus some deleted scenes. I've posted some of my favorites below: the first half of the music video (sorry but I couldn't get part two because all recordings of it on youtube are pretty lousy), and the deleted octopus scene. Speilburg and Donner cut the scene out because they decided that it looked kind of dopey but I thought it was pretty cool. Now you know what Data was talking about at the end of the movie. A break dancing octopus, whod,ve thunk it. Check em' out!

The Goonies R' Good Enough - Part 1

Giant Sushi!

Goonies Uncertain Future

So far the future of the Goonies has not yet been written. There have been suggestions for an animated series to air on Cartoon Network which would pick up were the scene at the end of the movie left off, (think of the adventure continuing with out the end credits). Unfortunately the project hit a snag due to the surviving actors asking to be paid for having the likenesses of their younger selves drawn into the cartoon. Personally, I think they are being a bunch of babies. I know they are not being payed for anything Goonies that is selling now but come on. I would be thrilled just to see my younger, five-year-old self translated into the series (even though I had nothing to do with it).

There is also talk about the series taking place in the modern day with a new group of kids called the "Groonies" with some, if not all, of the original Goonies making cameos, namely Data and Mouth. It could also possibly be a second movie with most, if not all, of the original Goonies helping the new kids solve a new mystery.

Whatever the future holds lets hope that it will not disappoint. The Goonies has left a lasting impression on a lot of us, now in our twenties and thirties. Here's to hoping that it leaves an impression with many generations of Goonies to come. Say it with me everybody...

Goonies Never Say Die!

I have one more pic for you guys:

Me favorite Halloween decoration. Arrr!

I also want to mention a recent death in the Goonies family. Teena Marie who perfomed the song "14K" on the movie soundtrack, passed away in December of 2010 from a head concussion after a picure frame fell on her while she slept. She was 54. She may be gone but her music will live on.

To The Memory of Teena Marie

March 5th, 1956 - December 26th, 2010

I've wanted to write this article for a long time so I hope everyone enjoys it. Until next time retro Goonies. Nightwatcher out.
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