The Goonies is a movie well known to Gen X. Many Xers saw it in theaters as kids or teenagers when it came out in the mid-80s, and it soon became a cult classic. This summer I got together with four friends from my growing-up years and we all went to see the house from the movie together. All five of us got together to catch up in Portland and to take a road trip out to Astoria on the Oregon Coast. One of my friends lives in Astoria, so she gave us a tour of the town. Seeing the Goonies house was at the top of the list of places we wanted to see.
We parked the car on the street and headed up the private gravel drive that leads up to the house that is up on a hill.
Visitors come by the thousands every year to see and photograph the house - here's the view of the water down below the hill from the gravel drive...
Filming started in 1984 and was starred in by well known Gen X actors who were teenagers or pre-teens at the time. I remember there being a lot of talk about Goonies on my elementary school playground when it was in theaters. I finally saw it on TV a few years afterwards.
The mayor of Astoria declared June 7th as the official Goonies Day for the city to commemorate the the day the film was released in 1985.
Shadows of my friend and me as I lift up my camera to take a picture....
The skylight to the attic was open - the attic where the kids in the movie find the treasure map leading to the hidden Oregon Coast pirate treasure. The story line is full of all the Spielberg traits that made for great movies in the 80s. Before the trip, I watched the movie for the first time in two decades. It was interesting to see it as an adult - maybe a little edgy at times for a kids' movie, but even the edgiest characters seemed to ultimately have good hearts.
The sun was low in the sky on a late summer day - we were there on maybe one of the most beautiful, if not the most beautiful day of the year in Astoria.
You can't go onto the property since someone lives there, but I zoomed in little bit with my camera to capture a closer image of the Goondocks sign....
The "Goondocks" was the fictional name of the neighborhood where the Goonies lived in the movie. Astoria is a port city and just below the house are docks on the Columbia River, which connects with the Pacific Ocean.
Another view of what you see looking out from the front of the Goonies house - the bridge that connects Oregon and Washington.
Hyacinths, sunflowers and all kinds of other flowers were taking in the rays of the sun that day from the front yard.
My friends were standing with their backs to the sun which unexpectedly made for a great picture - the sign has shadow images of the characters in the film, and the shadow images of my friends are cast below the sign. All the shadow images in the picture are people who were important to my childhood.
Gen Xers who played characters in the film were: Martha Plimpton, Sean Astin, Josh Brolin, Jonathan Ke Quan, Jeff Cohen, Kerri Green, and Corey Feldman. I'd have to say Martha was my favorite in the film. I even got glasses that looked like the ones she wore in the film when I was a kid...she looked way better in them than I did!
In the film, this was the house of the two characters who were brothers - Mikey (played by Sean Austin) and Brand (played by Josh Brolin).
Above is a snapshot of my friends walking up the drive to the house. Seeing this house on my own would have already been great. Seeing this house - an iconic piece of Generation X history - with four other Gen Xers that I grew up with, made the experience a hundred times better.
Summer comes to and end. Soon enough, all this wild grass will be green again, the bright sky will be overcast, and the Goondocks will quietly hold memories of all the feet who walked up to this house...Gen X actors who have long since grown up, and Gen Xers who have come to see a place from the imaginations of their youth.
For panoramic photos of "The Goondocks" and the Oregon Coast landscape where a lot of the movie was filmed, make sure to click this link:
The Edge of the West Coast & A View of the Goondocks from Far Up Above
Artist's signature on the Goonies sign: Tony Barnes
(c) 2013 Writing and photos by Chlo Koffas- all rights reserved