Nov 132015
 
Title: The Goonies: 30th Anniversary Collector’s Edition
Genre: Family, Adventure
Starring: Sean Astin,
Josh Brolin,
Corey Feldman,
Joe Pantoliano,
Certificate: 12
Picture: 1080p
16×9 (2.40:1)
Audio Format: Dolby TrueHD 5.1
Subtitles: English,
Portuguese,
Chinese,
Dutch,
Korean,
French. etc.
Runtime: 1 Hours 54 mins
Extras: Commentary,
Deleted Scenes,
Music Video,
Making Of,
Magazine & Art Cards
Studio: Warner Home Video
Release Date: Nov 09 2015
See If You Like: Stand By Me,
Gremlins,
Hook

A true cult phenomenon, and one of the greatest children’s/family adventure films of all time – boasting an impressive cast and sublime behind-the-scenes team – The Goonies is now 30 years old, and in order to celebrate we peeped inside the treasure trove which is The Goonies 30th Anniversary Collector’s Edition Blu-ray.

The film itself follows a band of teenage friends who refer to themselves as The Goonies, as they embark upon an adventure in an attempt to save their parents’ houses from imminent foreclosure. Stumbling across a pirate’s map (handily left in an attic) the boys head out on an adventure to uncover the buried treasure of legendary pirate One-eyed Willie, along the way bumping into a trio of career criminals desperate to catch the kids and make off with the loot, and a mild-mannered monster with a heart of gold.

Presented by Steven Spielberg (who not only produces, but lands a ‘story’ credit), written by Chris Columbus (Gremlins), and directed by Superman/Lethal Weapon‘s Richard Donner, The Goonies has an hugely impressive pedigree of talent involved (from a trio of people who were arguably at the height of their craft at the time), and said talent even extended to the largely child-based cast.

While many of the main group haven’t had the most illustrious careers; Corey Feldman (who starred as cheeky sidekick Mouth) was involved with a number of cult ’80s movies (Gremlins, Stand By Me, and The Lost Boys being three major titles); Sean Astin (who stars as group frontrunner and inspirational speech-giver Mikey) went on to star as Sam in The Lord of the Rings trilogy; and Josh Brolin (the No Country For Old Men star, who played Mickey’s older brother and group protector Brand here) is widely regarded as one of the finest actors of his generation; and with the trio of pantomime gangsters played by Robert Davi (Die Hard), Anne Ramsey (Throw Momma From The Train), and the highly underrated Joe Pantoliano (Memento); there’s clearly an abundance of ’80s talent both in front of the camera as well as behind it.

Storywise, The Goonies is pretty simplistic; the kids find a map and go looking for treasure while baddies try to stop them; but it’s success, and 30-year-long stay as a true cult must-see movie, is built on it’s sense of fun, family and adventure. At the heart of the film you’ve essentially got a group of friends who’re having one last hurrah; they’re out playing at adventures, cursing (the volume of casual swearing is not unrealistic, but rather surprising for a family film), and using their treasure hunt as a means of holding onto their dream of staying together – simple sentiments we can all relate to.

Below trailer is for the US 25th Anniversary Blu-ray release.

They’re also having fun; laughing at one another, making silly jokes, making up stories and riding their bikes through the town. And it’s not only the gang’s sense of fun and adventure which makes The Goonies so appealing (though the clear nostalgic feeling of knowing how much fun you could have with just a bike and some friends will make it for the older generation, and thoughts of “that could be us” will make it for younger audiences), but the combination of those things (the treasure map, the exploring, the chases), and the heart behind it all; because we’re constantly reminded through speeches and actions (just look at the journey of mild-mannered monster Sloth) how The Goonies are all about friendship.

Plus, with a cast full of true characters; the cheeky one, the leader, the kid with the gadgets, the chunky one, and the monster; fantastic cinematography, a wonderfully fun, easy-going, and truly ’80s atmosphere, as well as the prospect of finding a full-blown pirate ship underneath your very town and discovering a bunch of gold with your friends, what’s not to love?

Sure The Goonies has aged somewhat (in terms of sets more than anything), but 30 years on it’s still one of (if not the) best family adventure films ever released. With a treasure trove of talent both behind and in front of the camera, a film with real heart, and a freakin’ pirate ship, it’s easy to see why it’s become such a cultural phenomenon. A brilliantly made, lasting, and fantastically fun film the whole family will enjoy – again.

Goonies 01

Picture:

We’ve already seen a disc-only release of The Goonies on Blu-ray, and it doesn’t appear as though any improvements to the image have been made (there’s certainly sign of a new master being taken for the 30th Anniversary release), so it’s a good job the last release held up as well as it did.

Contrast is stable and colours appear naturalistic, fine detail is generally strong, flesh tones are realistic, and textures are well represented overall. A handful of shots do appear a touch softer than the majority of the film, and minor edge enhancement is visible (though not overly distracting) in certain scenes, although given the nice layer of grain retained, the lack of any blemishes, scratches, or other lasting print/transfer issues, and the fact clarity remains respectable throughout, it’s a solid upgrade and decent transfer for The Goonies.

Audio:

While ‘upgrading’ classic stereo-only movies to 5.1 tracks can prove problematic, The Goonies‘ has been given a thoughtful and fitting mix which sees the rear channels used with subtlety and intelligence; their inclusion hasn’t been overdone, and the ambient effects which emanate from behind truly feel fitting. Dialogue is clear, strong, and consistently stable (a Godsend considering how often people are arguing and shouting over one another in this film), there’s a decent range, and any effects are well handled; making for an impressive overall auditory experience.

Extras:

The meat of package, and the real reason to buy The Goonies 30th Anniversary Collector’s Edition Blu-ray, comes with its selection of special features. On-disc bonus materials include a collection of deleted scenes; a Cindi Lauper music video (who knew The Goonies R Good Enough lasts nearly quarter of an hour!?); The Goonies theatrical trailer; and a highly entertaining commentary track (with Richard Donner and a number of the principal cast members; Chunk, Data, Mouth, Mikey, Brand, Andy, and Stef) with ‘Hidden Treasures‘ (pop-up, picture-in-picture, segments where Donner & co. discuss the film), as well as a short [7 minute] but watchable Making Of featurette (produced in 1985 to promote the film).

Goonies 30th Anniversary Blu-ray

Off-disc though, that’s where things get even more interesting (and collectible); as inside the impressive new packaging we’re given a series of art-cards depicting various storyboards, deleted scenes, or impressive shots from the film; an illustrated magazine (complete with 150 photos and artwork) detailing the full making of The Goonies; and a reprint of Spielberg’s 2009 Empire Magazine article chronicling The Goonies, and where the cast and crew went afterwards (sadly not available for review purposes).

Some fans may grumble at not getting the limited edition board game included on the US 25th anniversary release of the film, and it’s true all extras included here have been replicated elsewhere (the disc itself is a reissue, and the magazines etc. were all available in Collector’s Editions in other territories), but frankly a missing board game is surplus to requirements. What is included is fantastic (The Goonies magazine especially), it’s sure to delight even any casual Goonies fan, and makes the entire purchase well worth the extra few pounds this Collector’s Edition will cost over the stand-alone Blu-ray.

The Bottom Line:

Well deserving of its cult status and presented here in a fantastic package which comes complete with enough goodies and information to make it a truly fan-pleasing treasure trove, The Goonies 30th Anniversary Collector’s Edition Blu-ray is a fantastic buy. Complete with solid picture, great audio, and a wealth of special features (both on and off disc) which make it well worth the purchase price and upgrade from the stand-alone edition this new anniversary release will take pride of place in any collection, or make a great gift for any Goonies fan. Plus, 30 years on it’s still one of the greatest family adventure films ever released, and who doesn’t want to own the film which made “Hey You Guys!” a recognisable catchphrase and introduced the world to The Truffle Shuffle?

Matt Wheeldon@TheMattWheeldon.

Film:
Ratings 08 Buy from Amazon.co.uk Buy from Amazon.com
Video:
Ratings 07 Goonies 30th Anniversary Blu-ray
Audio:
Ratings 08
Extras:
Ratings 09
Overall:
Ratings 08