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The Goonies Review

Other Critics provided by

Critics scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.

  • 3.0

    out of 100

    Mixed or average reviews
    based on a weighted average of all
    critic review scores.

  • 50

    out of 100

    Wall Street Journal Julie Salamon

    Actually, maybe the movie is better than it seems to be -- I just couldn't understand what anyone was saying. The dialogue came across as clear as schoolyard chatter during recess -- and just about as pleasant to listen to. There is a water slide, a pirate ship and an amusing little chubbikins (Jeff Cohen) who squirts Reddi Wip directly into his mouth. [20 Jun 1985, p.1]

  • 60

    out of 100


    Territory is typical small town Steven Spielberg; this time set in a coastal community in Oregon. Story is told from the kids' point-of-view and takes a rather long time to be set in motion.

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  • 70

    out of 100

    The Hollywood Reporter

    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.

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  • 75

    out of 100

    Chicago Sun-Times Roger Ebert

    The Goonies, like Gremlins, shows that Spielberg and his directors are absolute masters of how to excite and involve an audience. "E.T." was more like "Close Encounters"; it didn't simply want us to feel, but also to wonder, and to dream.

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  • 75

    out of 100

    Chicago Tribune Gene Siskel

    As entertaining as The Goonies finally becomes--and its last hour is mostly one pleasure after another--it's a shame that Spielberg, writer Chris Columbus and director Richard Donner felt the need to take the low road in terms of language. [7 Jun 1985, p.A]

  • 80

    out of 100

    The New York Times Janet Maslin

    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. Their ghostly ship is the movie's piece de resistance.

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For Families provided by Common Sense Media

OK for kids 10+

A classic '80s action-fantasy -- tweens will love!

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know this film is a rambunctious, noisy, pirate-themed treasure-hunt action-fantasy -- all the ingredients that kids will love. Kids are in peril, find a dead body, are being hunted by thieves who are after their treasure map, and fall into all kinds of trouble. Beyond the (now-dated) special effects, cavernous (literally) sets, stunts, hideous skeletons, and outsized props, there's a message about being yourself and bonding with your friends and siblings -- even if they're outcasts. Expect some vulgar humor and swearing (including "s--t"). The movie may be too scary for some kids, so know your kid before you watch.

  • Families can talk about the excitement within the movie. What about the film inspires adventure in your kid?
  • What kind of bond do these friends have? Are the characters relatable?

The good stuff
  • message true2

    Messages: Although there's some stereotyping and conflict/other iffy behavior among characters, overall the movie promotes positive messages about teamwork, believing in yourself, and the triumph of the underdog.

  • rolemodels true1

    Role models: The kids do their share of bickering, but they're also fiercely loyal to each other. Some stereotyping -- the fat kid, the jock older brother, the Asian who's a gadget fanatic, etc. A physically disabled grown man is considered a "monster" by his family and is chained up under the stairs. But he befriends one of the kids and gets his chance to shine.

What to watch for
  • violence false2

    Violence: Death and torture are constantly threatened and implied. Even though all that really happens is lots of falling down and getting wet, there are plenty of crushed/impaled skeletons along the way for maximum gruesomeness. Young kids also discover a frozen dead body.

  • sex false2

    Sex: Some kissy-kissy stuff, and off-color humor about a nude classical statue's genitalia; teen boy adjusts rearview mirror to see up cheerleader's skirt.

  • language false3

    Language: Several uses of "s--t" (by both kids and grown-up lowlifes), as well as "bulls--t," "damn," "goddamn," "ass," "hell," etc.

  • consumerism false3

    Consumerism: Obvious onscreen plugs for Pepsi, Domino's Pizza, etc.

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false0

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: Not an issue