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While I remember first seeing this movie as a still very young kid, this is not one of those movies that I grew up with. As a matter of fact, I think I had only seen it just once, prior to my recent viewing of it, a couple of days ago. It therefor also isn't one of those movies I have fond and warm memories of, though I imaging this would have been a movie that I would have loved to watch, when I was still a young kid.

Problem with most of the recent kids movies nowadays is that they are too fluffy and play things far too safe. They really aren't willing to take any risks, at any department. The stories are generic, the characters all bland stereotypes and the humor too predictable. They besides love to feature all sort of moralistic messages in them, often combined with some forced drama and emotions. In other words, they really don't know how to connect to its younger audience anymore! The film-makers don't seem to remember how it was like to be a young kid and the things that excited you and made you happy and were interested in at the time. This movie luckily didn't forget about any of these things though. It seems to understand kids and its truly written and directed with the right type of audience constantly in mind. It's an adventurous and also imaginative movie, that in no way resembles a realistic movie but what kid ever wanted to have a realistic adventure?

That's the biggest reason why this movie is loved that much; it's an adventure movie with the type of adventure in it that young kids would love to have gone on, alongside with the goonies. The kids are the heroes in this, as well as the smart ones, while most of the adults are of course the clumsy and not too smart villains. Good thing about the movie is that it also isn't afraid to be a somewhat darker and more serious one at times. This at the same time also makes it all the more obvious how serious this movie was taking its target audience. The movie is not afraid to show you death and exaggerated violence. And there is nothing wrong with a kids movie being a genuinely scary and threatening one at times. It's all part of growing up really, so why shouldn't kids movies be allowed to show you any of these elements? It in a way gives the movie realism and ensures that its audience feels more invested in both its story and all of its many main characters.

Another thing that makes this movie a somewhat realistic feeling one is the way how all of the kids are acting in this. They truly act and behave like real kids. They respond to certain situations just like other normal kid would do in real life and perhaps more importantly; they talk like real kids. So yes, that means that there also is some cursing in this movie and boys being boys to each other and to girls. It's an extremely quotable movie actually.

It's a movie that's made and got approached just like any other major studio production. And that's no big surprise really, seeing all of the big names that were involved with making this movie. Director Richard Donner, producer Steven Spielberg, writer Chris Columbus, these all are some big names from the industry, who really understand film-making and never do half work. This all is really something this movie benefits from as well.

Now, I won't pretend as if this is the greatest adventure movie or best kids movie ever made though. It's still lacking in some ways, mainly in its story department. It's a tad bit too simplistic and straightforward at times for my taste and I was also definitely liking the movie better when it constantly was set at different locations, rather than just below ground, inside a hidden and dark cavern. I don't know, it just took away some of the fun for me and made the movie a bit too repetitive at times.

Luckily there is plenty of good humor and fun characters to enjoy in this. It's a genuinely funny and charming movie, which is also thanks to its great cast. Robert Davi, Joe Pantoliano and Anne Ramsey are great villains in this and the young cast involves some now big and famous names, such as Sean Astin and Josh Brolin, most notably.

This movie is some good '80's fun with also a good soundtrack to support it. I really liked it, though if you grew up with this movie you probably want to- and also should add an extra point to my rating.

7/10

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About Frank Veenstra

Watches movies...writes about them...and that's it for now.
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