The Goonies (1985)



Critic Consensus: An energetic, sometimes noisy mix of Speilbergian sentiment and funhouse tricks that will appeal to kids and nostalgic adults alike.

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Leonard Maltin wasn't alone when he noticed similarities between Goonies and the 1934 Our Gang comedy Mama's Little Pirate. Adapted by Chris Columbus from a story by Steven Spielberg, the film follows a group of misfit kids (including such second-generation Hollywoodites as Josh Brolin and Sean Astin) as they search for buried treasure in a subterranean cavern. Here they cross the path of lady criminal Mama Fratelli (Anne Ramsey) and her outlaw brood. Fortunately, the kids manage to befriend Fratelli's hideously deformed (but soft-hearted) son (John Matuszak), who comes to their rescue. The Spielberg influence is most pronounced in the film's prologue and epilogue, when the viewer is advised that the film's real villains are a group of "Evil Land Developers." The musical score makes excellent use of Max Steiner's main theme from The Adventures of Don Juan, not to mention contributions by the likes of Richard Marx and Cyndi Lauper. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi
PG (adult situations/language, violence)
Action & Adventure , Comedy , Kids & Family
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:
Amblin Entertainment

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Sean Astin
as Michael 'Mikey' Walsh
Josh Brolin
as Brandon 'Brand' Walsh
Jeff Cohen
as Lawrence 'Chunk' Cohen
Corey Feldman
as Clark 'Mouth' Devereaux
Jonathan Ke Quan
as Richard 'Data' Wang
Kerri Green
as Andy Carmichael
Martha Plimpton
as Stef Steinbrenner
Joe Pantoliano
as Francis
Anne Ramsey
as Mama Fratelli
Lupe Ontiveros
as Rosalita
Mary Ellen Trainor
as Mrs. Walsh
Keith A. Walker
as Mr. Walsh
Curtis Hanson
as Mr. Perkins
George Robotham
as Prison Guard
Newt Arnold
as Man in Shower
Charles McDaniel
as Chunk's Father
Elaine Cohen McMahon
as Chunk's Mother
Michael Paul Chan
as Data's Father
George Nicholas McLean
as Mouth's Father
Paul Tuerpé
as Sheriff
Jeb Stuart Adams
as Troy's Friend
Eric Briant Wells
as Troy's Friend
Gene Ross
as Man in Shower
Max Segar
as Man in Shower
Newton D. Arnold
as Man in Shower
Jack O'Leary
as Reporter
Patrick Cameron
as Reporter
Orwin Harvey
as Tennis Player
Ted Grossman
as FBI Man
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Critic Reviews for The Goonies

All Critics (46) | Top Critics (6)

"The Goonies" is the kind of hyperactive peril-packed movie young audiences can't resist.

Full Review… | June 6, 2016
New York Daily News
Top Critic

The action at the center of Chris Columbus' script occasionally falters and generally feels manufactured, but the kids go about their chores as if convinced that all their make-believe is true.

Full Review… | June 8, 2015
Hollywood Reporter
Top Critic

It's a charmless exercise: director Richard Donner turns the kids into shrieking ferrets, and his jumpy cutting seems to lag behind the action deliberately in a curious attempt to make the film seem more chaotic and cluttered.

Full Review… | February 1, 2007
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

While the pre-pubescents continually scream, their doting parents prove equally odious in a finale of astounding sentimentality.

Full Review… | June 23, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

The Goonies is 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.

Full Review… | October 23, 2004
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic

The Goonies has every imaginable funhouse flourish. It has crooks, bats, cobwebs, skeletons, a lovable monster, an underground grotto and a treasure hidden by some of the most considerate, clue-loving pirates who ever lived.

August 30, 2004
New York Times
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for The Goonies

What it lacks in script, it more than makes up for in grand, perilous structure and heartwarming adventure. The Goonies is a classical combustion of laughter, discovery and booty (I mean, booby) traps. The cast and sequences are just as memorable and dynamic as its storytellers in Spielberg, Donner & Columbus. 4/5

Eugene Bernabe
Eugene Bernabe

Super Reviewer


So freakin' stupid. The exposition sets up all the boys' distinct personalities, only to squander the rest of the movie with unmotivated action and bland yet frantic adventure. None of the boys' traits really play into the solving of the puzzles except the stereotypical techie Asian's. Mikey's dweeby hamartia of asthma doesn't even provide an obstacle or suspense. Stuff happens to the boys, and nothing is too dangerous or scary to warrant any real emotional investment in their journey. Also disappointing, much like with "Nobody puts Baby in the corner" and "You're killing me, Smalls," quotable gems like "Goonies never say die" and "Sloth loves Chunk" are completely lackluster in context. As for the former, I expected it to be a real club philosophy, a rallying battle cry born of a previous adventure during which they almost died but didn't, therefore cementing their stalwart courage in the face of certain death! "Goonies never say die" is only said once as a throwaway line without set-up or follow-up. As for the latter, could Sloth BE more disturbing as a child's nightmare come to life? He's the monster with soul, but the love is just played for laughs instead of true pathos.

Alice Shen
Alice Shen

Super Reviewer


Classic 80s adventure comedy with that certain suburban Spielberg feeling that will never fail to entertain on a rainy Sunday afternoon.

Jens S.
Jens S.

Super Reviewer

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