The Goonies, a 1985 adventure comedy film, is one of those ubiquitous pieces of The '80s fans hold fond memories of, even today.
A small group of kids living on the "Goon Docks" of Astoria, Oregon are in dire straits: the owners of a local country club have threatened their families' homes with foreclosure so they can finish building a new addition to said country club. On one of their last days in the neighborhood, one of the "Goonies", Mikey (Sean Astin), discovers a Treasure Map in his attic. The map supposedly reveals where to find the treasure of infamous pirate One-Eyed Willie — and it appears to lead somewhere underneath Astoria. Mikey and the rest of the Goonies decide to try saving their neighborhood by going after the treasure — but to get it, they must outwit a trio of mobsters and survive numerous death traps designed to keep One-Eyed Willie's treasure safe from outsiders.
The Goonies was the brainchild of three well-known Hollywood names: Steven Spielberg (executive producer/story), Chris Columbus (screenplay), and Richard Donner (director).
In addition to a Novelization by James Kahn, the film also received a few licensed video games (The Goonies covers three separate games, and The Goonies II is a sequel to one of those games). A rumored sequel has been stuck in Development Hell since The 2000s.
Character tropes go on to the Characters Sheet.
This movie provides examples of:
- Abandoned Area: The restaurant. Maybe.Mouth: This is a summer place? Looks like it hasn't been open for TEN summers.
- Accidental Kiss: Andy accidentally kissed Mikey instead of Brand when they're under the wishing well. She doesn't know until the end, when she asks Brand where his braces went.Andy: Brand, what happened to your braces?
Brand: I don't wear braces, Mikey wears... [realizes what she's saying] ...Mikey! That little...
Andy: Ssshhh... [kisses him again]
- Actor Allusion:
- Sloth is at one point wearing an Oakland Raiders t-shirt, whom Sloth's actor, John Matuszak used to play for back in the 70s.
- A director allusion, as a bit of John Williams' theme from Richard Donner's Superman: The Movie plays when Sloth rips open his shirt to reveal the logo.
- Mikey mentions Michael Jackson going over to Chunk's house in one scene. In real life, Corey Feldman was close friends with the singer, and the two later became estranged.
- At one point in the movie, Mike cries out "Holy Mackenzie!" Sean Astin's brother is Mackenzie Astin.
- Added Alliterative Appeal: One-Eyed Willy, Francis Fratelli, Stef Steinbrenner, Chester Copperpot. Also most of Data's inventions have names that invoke this.
- Adults Are Useless: When Mikey's mom sees Brand all tied up, instead of freeing him she asks why he can't exercise like a normal kid.
- Almost Kiss: While the protagonists are exploring a building, Brandon and Andrea ("Andy") are thrown together on a couch. As they hug each other and lean in to kiss, one of the other Goonies makes a comment and breaks the mood.Chunk: Shame, shame!
Data: I know your name!
Mouth: Come on, Brand! Slip 'er the tongue!
- Artistic License – Economics: The foreclosure framework the plot is based around is really confusing. The kids are going to lose their childhood homes due to them being foreclosed upon by a banker who's planning on demolishing the development to build an expansion to a local private golf course, which appears to be a weird muddling of foreclosure and eminent domain. Foreclosure is a proceeding when a mortage is defaulted upon; the bank can't just unilaterally foreclose your loan legally with no just cause. So, are all of the houses in foreclosure at the same time (what a coincidence!), or is it just Mikey's family being in foreclosure as the last holdout in the development unwilling to sell to the developer? If the latter, why is his family having trouble paying the mortgage now (it's mentioned that his father works at a museum and doesn't make a lot of money, but there's nothing to indicate that it's a recent change so why is he unable to pay the mortgage now? Also, if Mikey's family are the last holdouts from the developer's plans to buy the land, wouldn't that mean that every other family that accepted an offer to buy out their homes (presumably for above market value) now lost out because the development will not be going through? At the end, it can all be chalked up to being an 80's kids movie.
- Artistic License – Geography: The Oregon coast seen in the movie is either on the Washington side of the Columbia River or some two dozen miles to the south. Neither is likely to be accessible to a gang of teens and pre-teens on bicycles.
- Putting the final scene on the river keeps it within bicycle range, but then Washington would show up on the other side of what would clearly be a river, rather than the ocean.
- The entire opening car chase through Astoria. Complete with driving down one way roads, going up a hill and immediately coming down the same way they went up, driving down a one way pier, and finishing on Cannon Beach which is some 40 miles south of Astoria.
- Although Astoria, Oregon is a real place, and much of the film was shot there, the town does not actually have a neighborhood called the Goon Docks.
- Artistic License – History: It's extraordinarily unlikely that a seventeenth-century pirate would spend any amount of time near the Oregon Coast. As anyone who has played The Oregon Trail should know, Oregon didn't receive significant Western settlement until the nineteenth century. The film's setting of Astoria is actually one of the oldest towns in Oregon, and it wasn't founded until 1811. In the seventeenth century, the area would have had a distinct lack of European sea traffic for pirates to rob. And One-Eyed Willy was being pursued by the British, who should technically be called the English since this is before the Acts of Union in 1707. This would require that the English chased him around the southern tip of South America and then all the way back up north until they reached the western coast of North America. That is not technically impossible, but it's really unlikely that everyone involved would have gone to such lengths to reach what would have then been a remote spot of wilderness.
- Artistic License – Medicine: The Running Gag where Mikey constantly uses his inhaler was Played for Laughs but those kind of emergency use inhalers are only meant to be used a couple of times per day with serious side effects such as heart palpatations and nervous shaking if overused.
- Atomic F-Bomb: Mouth screams a curse as he falls down the waterfall into the lagoon where the ship is.Mouth: OOOOHHHHHHHHHHH SHHHHIIIIIIIT!!!!!! [splash]
- Avoid the Dreaded G Rating: The word shit comes up several times. As do references to drugs like cocaine and heroin, and "sexual torture devices".
- Bait-and-Switch Accusation: After the kids have glued the statue's broken piecenote back on, Mrs. Walsh comes in and notices the odd way they're all crowded around it on the coffee table. Awkward silence, then...Mrs. Walsh: What is that?
Chunk: Oh shit, what?
Mrs. Walsh: What is that?! (camera cuts to some spilled potato chips on the floor) That is a mess! I want it cleaned up, boys!
- Bait-and-Switch Suicide: Invoked. The opening scene shows a man in the county jail hanging in his cell with a note attached. The jail guard approaches and reads the note, only for the man (of the infamous Fratelli gang) to knock him out and escape.
- Bang, Bang, BANG: Referenced when Chunk says that the gunshots he heard from the old restaurant were "not the big ones you hear in war movies," but real gunshots.
- Bat Out of Hell: That's what Jake Fratelli believes about the bats attacking them. He builds a cross with his fingers and reminds his mum to watch for the veins.
- Bat Scare: When Brand removes a rock blocking further passage into the tunnel leading to One-Eyed Willy's hideout, he calls out to see if anybody's there, and a swarm of bats come flying out of the hole, scaring the Goonies.
- Because You Were Nice to Me: Not that he articulates it (and might not even be able to properly), but Chunk is the first person to really treat Sloth like a fellow person. It's no surprise when Sloth proceeds to help Chunk (and by extension, the rest of Chunk's friends) later.
- Beware the Skull Base: Played with as it features a skull-shaped cave entrance and an ominous collection of hazards, but the only danger they face are the booby traps set by One Eyed Willy and the Fratellis that chase them through the catacombs.
- Big Damn Heroes: Sloth and Chunk swing in like oversized Errol Flynns to stop the Fratellis from dropping the Goonies off One-Eyed Willy's ship.
- Big Damn Kiss: Between Brand and Andy after they exit the cave.
- Big "OMG!": "Oh my God" is stated 17 times, spoken by 7 characters. Some of the more drawn out ones include:
- Mikey and Chunk when Chunk breaks the small statue of David.
- Brand when he's about to fly off the road at high speed on a child-sized bicycle.
- Stef and Andy when they step on the rake.
- Mouth and Stef when they spot the pirate ship for the first time.
- Ma Fratelli when Mouth spits out all the jewels he was hiding.
- And finally topped off by the sheriff with "Holy Mary, mother of God" when he sees the pirate ship sailing off at the end.
- Bilingual Bonus:
- The gangsters are the infamous Fratelli Brothers and their mother. Fratelli means "brothers" in Italian.
- When Chunk realizes he's been caught by the Fratellis again, the words he mumbles — before he starts screaming — are the beginning of a Hebrew prayer.
- Blade Brake: Having watching a hero do it on TV earlier in the film, Sloth comes sliding down the sail in the same way.
- Blatant Lies: Francis takes his toupee off for everyone to see when the bats attack. Later when his brother accuses him of misspending funds meant to fix Sloth's teeth, he replies blatantly "I DON'T WEAR A HAIRPIECE!"
- Blind Shoulder Toss: Mikey does this to his asthma inhaler at the end.
- The Board Game: 2021 saw the release of The Goonies: Never Say Die by Prospero Hall, a series of adventures for the gang inspired by the pirate treasure and caverns of the film. It even received its own expansion, The Goonies: Under the Goondocks, which adds in Brand, Andy and Stef, as well as Troy as an antagonistic figure and later Goonie.
- Booby Trap: Or, as Data would call them, "Booty Traps". This film is swimming with them.
- All instances of the kids swearing is cut when this film airs on television.
- When ABC Family airs this movie, most of Andy's panty shots are cut from the film. In one shot, her minishirt is even digitally painted to cover up her panties!
- Breaking the Bonds: Sloth pulls his chains right out of the wall to retrieve Chunk's Baby Ruth candybar.
- Brought to You by the Letter "S": When Sloth rips off his outer shirt, he reveals a t-shirt with a single big "S", apparently standing for "Sloth".
- Buffy Speak: Mikey (and sometimes his friends) keeps referring to the treasure as One-Eyed Willy's "rich stuff".
- Bullet Sparks: During the jail break in the opening scene, Francis Fratelli dumps gasoline in a ring around the local jail. When the cops attempt to pursue, Francis shoots the gasoline to create a big ring of flame to cover the escape.
- The Cameo: Cyndi Lauper appears as herself, on TV, singing "The Goonies R Good Enough."
- The Can Kicked Him: Troy is launched into the ceiling of the country club bathroom when the Goonies are fooling around with the Pipe Maze.
- Captain Morgan Pose: An Establishing Character Moment for Mouth when he puts his foot on the living room table in an attempt to look cool, until Brand tells him to cut it out.
- Casual Danger Dialogue: Mikey Walsh engages in this while Andy is trying to hit the right notes on the skeletal organ (where one more wrong note will send them plunging to their deaths):Andy: I can't tell if it's an "A sharp," or a "B flat."note
Mikey: Heh. If you hit the wrong note, we'll all be flat.
- Cave Mouth: There is a skull-shaped cave entrance.
- Censorship by Spelling: "Holy S-H-I-T!"
- According to Quan, his mom wouldn't allow him to curse in the movie.
- Chain of People: The Goonies form a chain when trying to outrun the pursuing Fratellis then when crossing the mast bridge so as not to fall after the bridge supports break. Again during the bone organ scene where they would quickly grab and pull up anyone who was in danger of falling from the collapsing floor.
- Chase Scene: The film begins with Jake Fratelli breaking out of jail followed by a car chase.
- Chekhov's Gun: Mikey's marble bag and the candles (more specifically, the one with writing on it) the kids find. The music notes on the back of the map were seen briefly when the four kids were looking at it during the thunderstorm.
- Chekhov's Hobby: Andy is able to save her friends from a deadly trap on account of the fact she took piano lessons when she was four years old.
- Chekhov's Skill:
- Sloth's watching of an Errol Flynn film earlier in the film comes in handy at the climax.
- Mouth's fluency in Spanish which he first demonstrated when being a Trolling Translator to Rosalita.
- Chronic Backstabbing Disorder: One-Eyed Willy and his mates according to the story Mikey retold back in the attic.
- Collapsing Lair: One-Eyed Willy's final Rube Goldberg Device collapses the cave and frees the ship at the end.
- Commonality Connection: Chunk discovers that Sloth also has a love for sweet things, especially chocolate. Cue Tastes Like Friendship.
- Community-Threatening Construction: The Goonies are inspired to go on their adventure (or at least the one in the film) due to the threat of their houses being foreclosed upon to build a new golf course.
- Contrived Coincidence: Mikey stops Data from taking coins off a scale while they raid One-Eyed Willy's treasure, declaring that everything else is fair game, but that they should leave those out of respect for the pirate. Ma Fratelli later lifts the same scale, and it trips the final trap which releases the ship from the cavern. It's all but stated that Mikey and Willy operate on the same wavelength but that level of understanding is on par with Mikey being Willie's reincarnation.
- Conveniently Precise Translation: The treasure map is in Spanish, but when translated into English, it becomes rhyming verse. No one even stops to consider how unusual this is.
- The map was supposedly written in the 1600s, when Spanish was a considerably different language than it is now. Nobody stops to wonder how the kid who took modern Spanish in school can read it perfectly, or how he translates it flawlessly to ancient English with terms like "ye".
- Cool Car: The Fratellis' Jeep Cherokee. Used to great effect in the film's opening chase scene and escape.(after getting around an obstacle that briefly stops the police, Ma abruptly stops and laughs manically)Jake Fratelli: What the hell are we doing here?!Mama Fratelli: Aw, trust in your old mother boys! (to Francis) Throw 'er into four-wheel-drive and hold onto your hats!(Ma takes off with all four of the Jeep's tires easily gripping the sandy wet surface. Cut to the reveal that they're at the Astoria Annual ORV Rally with several trucks and SUVs participating, enabling them to blend in with the crowd and escape)
- Cool Ship: Willy's pirate ship, the Inferno, is still intact and seaworthy(!) many, many years later by the time the Goonies find it. It was one in real life, too — the ship was a massive working set which, when filming wrapped, the crew tried desperately to find a buyer for, or even to donate it to a museum or theme park. Nobody bit, so they were forced to scuttle the ship.
- Correlation/Causation Gag: In the opening sequence, Mouth is watching a loud police chase on television while his father tries to unblock a sink. Mr. Devereaux tells Mouth to switch off the set, and he does... just as the police chase the Fratellis past the house. A bewildered Mouth assumes the sounds of sirens and gunfire are coming from the television and tries applying Percussive Maintenance. As the cars drive away, the sounds fade away too, and Mouth just shrugs it off.
- Counterfeit Cash: As the group searches the basement of the Fratellis' hideout, Data accidentally activates the printing press the Fratellis are using for forgery. It doesn't occur to him that the money is worthless until Brand sets him straight.Data: Fifty-dollar bill... Fifty-dollar bill! FIFTY-DOLLAR BILL!!
- Covers Always Lie:
- Chunk is with the rest of the Goonies in several VHS and DVD covers. But in the movie, he doesn't meet up with them until the climax. Oddly enough, Chunk was with them in the music video, but not Stef.
- The original poster art featured the cast dangling from the feet of another with the top one hanging on a rock. However, there is no such scene in the movie; the closest would be the moment before Andy plays the last note on the pipe organ.
- Creator Cameo:
- Richard Donner, the director, is one of the guys on the ATVs near the end of the film."Well, I'll be damned, it's them goobers!"
- Donner's motorhome also appears in a camera shot of Mikey and Brand on their house's patio.
- Richard Donner, the director, is one of the guys on the ATVs near the end of the film.
- Creepy Basement: The basement of the old restaurant Where Sloth is held.
- Crying Wolf: Chunk has this problem. None of his friends believe him when he starts a story with "I just saw the most amazing thing in my entire life." More importantly, the friendly sheriff doesn't believe him when he says he's in trouble because the last several times he called, it was a prank.
- Cryptic Background Reference: When Mikey is trying to convince the others to join him on his treasure hunt, Chunk declares: "I don't want to go on another one of your crazy Goonie adventures," suggesting this is not the first time Mikey has led them into trouble.
- Cutlass Between the Teeth: Chunk holds a knife in his teeth during the scene where he and Sloth appear on One-Eye Willy's ship to rescue the team from the Fratellis.
- Deadpan Snarker:
- This being an 80s movie, pretty much all of the kids had a silver tongue at some point, from Chunk to Data.
- Hell, Ma Fratelli gets in on this as well:Mouth: (pointing at the cup of reddish liquid) It's supposed to be water?
Fratelli: It's wet, ain't it? Drink it!
- And later, when the Fratellis find the body of Chester Copperpot.Jake: (checking the wallet) Looks like they picked him clean, Ma.
Mother Fratelli: Sure, right before they ate him.
- Death Course: The tunnel network explored by The Goonies certainly qualifies; while it didn't kill anyone in the movie, its traps had caused the death of Mr. Copperpot some decades before.
- The Dog Bites Back: Stef punches Ma Fratelli in the face after Sloth has freed them.
- A Dog Named "Dog": The Fratelli brothers. "Fratelli" means "brothers" in Italian.
- Doomed Predecessor: The Goonies find Chester Copperpot's remains in the cave system leading to the Treasure Room. Apparently, Copperpot fell victim to one of the Durable Deathtraps. On him, the kids find explosives to set some booby traps of their own and a skeleton figure's "Triple Stone" which they use to unlock a Secret Room later.
- Dramatic Thunder: Comes on right after the line "If we don't do something now there's going to be a golf course right where we're standing." when Chunk, Mikey, Mouth, and Data are looking at the Treasure Map.
- Dropped Glasses: Stef drops her glasses and Mikey accidentally steps on them.
- Durable Death Trap: All those booby traps set by Willie so many years ago still seem to work just fine.
- Dynamite Candle: A rare example of combining this with Chekhov's Gun; when the Goonies find Chester Copperpot's body, they pick through his satchel and find a bunch of candles, which the camera lingers on long enough to notice one "candle" has some kind of writing on it. Most of them actually are candles, which are used throughout the movie. In the penultimate scene, they're down to the last "candle", which of course is not a candle.Data: This funny candle, it sparkling.
Brand: That's not a candle, it's--
- Every Pizza Is Pepperoni: While the Goonies are hiding in the Fratellis' basement, Chunk is able to tell that they purchased a pepperoni pizza by smelling it.
- Evil Laugh:
- Francis Fratelli makes a passable, if rather high-pitched attempt at one.
- Sloth has a triumphant Evil Laugh after Mikey pushes the food tray towards him.
- Exact Words: When Chunk is told to confess "everything", he does just that by telling the Fratellis all the bad things he did.
- Extremely Short Timespan: The movie begins on the afternoon of the last day before Mikey's family is planning to move and ends the next morning, less than 24 hours later, just as Mikey's father is preparing to sign over the house.
- Eye Scream: Upon boarding the Inferno, Andy cringes in disgust at a pirate’s skeletal corpse. Mikey tells her it’s nothing to get excited about as it’s “just a skeleton”, until he turns it to face him, revealing a pair of knives stabbed into the eye holes.
- First Kiss: Mikey with Andy.
- Follow the Chaos: Once Sloth frees Chunk and the two enter the caves to catch up with the others, this is how Chunk knows that they're on the right track. He specifically comments on this when he sees what happened at the Pipe Maze.
- The skull lamp in Mikey's bedroom and the skeleton seen in the fish tank when Chunk tells Mikey, Brand and Mouth about the car chase between the Fratellis and the police at the beginning of the movie foreshadows Mikey, Brand, Andy, Stef, Data and Mouth discovering the skeleton of Chester Copperpot.
- The bowling ball that rolls across the railing, which Mikey releases from a tin bucket when he pulls a cord, that falls into another bucket and sets off the contraption that opens the yard gate for Chunk at the beginning of the film foreshadows the cannonball in the Triple Stones booby trap that Mikey sets off.
- Framed Clue: After Mikey finds a framed Treasure Map in the attic, he hands it to Chunk who predictably breaks the frame by dropping it.
- Free-Range Children: An entire gang of them... going out on a last adventure.
- Freeze Sneeze: Chunk sneezes as he looks out the window of the restaurant's walk-in freezer; Ma Fratelli blesses him on her way out of the room.
- Funny Background Event: Foreground rather than background, but while Brand is standing with the others in the attic talking about One-Eyed Willy, he's apparently more interested in trying to catch a fly or something. During the commentary, Josh Brolin admits he has no idea what he's doing in that scene.
- Gesundheit:Ma Fratelli: Sloth better not have broken those chains again, I'm not going back to the zoo for another set! Hurry up!
(Ma and her sons leave the room, where in the freezer Chunk sneezes.)
Ma Fratelli: Gesundheit!
- Gold Fever: It's very subtle, but The Goonies do get more irritable and impatient with each other when they reach the ship. Played harshly straight in the backstory with One Eyed Willy and his mates.
- A Good Name for a Rock Band: Scottish alternative rock band, The Fratellis named themselves after the villains in this movie.
- French band Chunk! No, Captain Chunk! get their name from a line of dialogue in the movie.
- Grappling-Hook Pistol: Data's "Pinchers of Peril". This gadget appears to be made from wind-up teeth and a Slinky and turns out to be useful not only in saving him from a fall, but also for a later Groin Attack against the Fratellis.
- Gray Rain of Depression: Early on when Mr. Perkins arrives with paperwork regarding the imminent demolition of the kids' neighborhood.
- Groin Attack: Data's "Pinchers of Peril" bite onto Francis Fratelli's groin when they confront him on the pirate ship.
- Earlier, the Fratelli Brothers try to cross a log bridge but slipped on the oil Data poured out ("Slick Shoes"). Francis flips over and landed on his groin, while Jake fell down hitting between his legs.
- Hand Signals: Mikey silently gestures to Mouth, Data, and Chunk a plan to escape from Brand's watch to go after the treasure.
- Hanging Around: The film opens with a guard at the local jail discovering that prisoner Jake Fratelli has hanged himself in his cell. He goes in to investigate, reads his suicide note, and discovers that Jake has faked his death.Guard: [reading] You schmuck. Did you really think I'd be stupid enough to kill myself?
- Hero Stole My Bike: "I owe you one."
- He's Dead, Jim: That one guy they found in the fridge.Chunk: It's a STIFF!
- Hit You So Hard, Your X Will Feel It!: Brand threatens Mikey this way he and the other kids tie him to a chair:Brand: I am going to hit all of you so hard that when you wake up, your clothes will be out of style!
- Homemade Inventions: The gadgets made by Data and his father.
- Hope Spot:
- Chunk has several close calls, but he manages to sneak out of the restaurant without the Fratellis finding out that he was still there, and he gets to a road and gets someone to finally listen to him about his story. And then, right when he thinks he's safe, he finds out that the driver is Jake Fratelli.
- Another one occurs when Data accidentally activates a printing press which begins turning out sheets of $50 bills which the Goonies begin celebrating that they found enough money to save the Goon Docks... only for Brand to point out that they're all counterfeit.
- How Much Did You Hear?:
Mikey: How long have you guys been standing there?
- Mikey to the other Goonies after his conversation with One-Eyed Willy.
Brand: Long enough, Mikey. Long enough.
- Ma Fratelli to the Goonies when she finds them outside the hideout - in which she and her sons have just shot and killed two FBI investigators.Ma Fratelli: How long you boys been at that window?
Mouth: Long enough to see you need about 400 Roach Motels in this place.
- Huddle Shot: The Goonies have one at the end when they realize they have enough treasure to ensure that they don't need to leave the town.
- Human Resources: Many of the traps or their triggers are built of human bones, including (somehow) the pipe organ.
- I'll Kill You!: Mikey does this when his brother Brandon (AKA: Brand) calls him an "adopted wuss".Mikey: I'm no adopted wuss! I'll kill you, Brand!
- Impossible Mission Collapse: A very fast acting example occurs near the end:Andy: What about the Fratellis?
Stef: Yeah, those creeps are still after us!
Mikey: I have an idea. I saw this in an old Hardy Boys episode. We leave a trail of gems leading into one cave while we hide out in another. And when they go into that cave, we'll make a run for it.
Ma Fratelli: Now, that sounds like a great idea!
- Instant Soprano: Francis lets out a high-pitched scream after he slips on a log over a stream of water and lands on it groin-first.
- It's the Journey That Counts: Played with. By searching for One-Eyed Willy's treasure, the friends all get even closer, Brand and Mikey prove they really do love each other, Andy learns she's a Goonie and tosses Troy aside, and they all come to realize they don't need money as long as they have each other. (Mikey apologizes to his dad for having to give up the treasure to save themselves, but his father is only glad to have him and Brand back safe and sound.) But not only did they help capture the Fratellis and give Sloth a home, so good was accomplished, but the gems in Mikey's marble bag will save the town from the country club developer, so they don't have to leave Astoria after all.
- I've Come Too Far: Mikey in his Rousing Speech mentions that together they managed to come further than the professional Adventurer Archaeologist Chester Copperpot which should be enough incentive to keep going.Mikey: Don't you see? Don't you realize? [Chester Copperpot] was a pro! He never made it this far. Look how far we've come. We've got a chance.
- I Warned You: After realizing they're dealing with the wanted Fratelli gang.Chunk: See, you guys! You never listen to me! I said there was gonna be trouble, but you didn't listen to me! You guys are crazy! You know, you guys are self-destructive! There's a funny farm that has your names written all over it!
- Keep It Foreign: In the original version of this film, the woman hired by Mikey's mother is a Hispanic named Rosalita, and Mouth helps Mrs. Walsh by translating her commands into Spanish. In the Spanish version of this film, Rosalita becomes an Italian woman named Rossanna.
- Kick the Dog: Troy driving Brand off the road while he's on the child-sized bike. Just for talking to his girl Andy.
- Known Only by Their Nickname: Mouth, Data, and Chunk.
- Laser-Guided Karma: Who's the worst off from when Mikey and the others mess around with the plumbing in the Pipe Maze? Troy, the Jerk Jock who nearly kills Brand by holding on to him when the latter was on a bike and the former was driving.
- "Leave Your Quest" Test: When Troy offers the Goonies rescue via the well.
- The Legend of Chekhov: The legend of the great pirate One-Eyed Willy turns out to be true including his massive Pirate Booty.
- Let's Get Out of Here: "Let's-" "-get outta-" "-here!" "Like, NOW!"
- Lighthouse Point: Where the entrance to the caves is located.
- Load-Bearing Hero: Sloth holds up a boulder to let the Goonies escape.
- Logo Joke: The Warner Bros logo crossfades in a skull which itself zooms into the opening shot.
- Lost in a Crowd: The Fratelli loose the cops in a field of similar looking trucks racing along the beach. Their vehicle winds up overtaking everyone else.
- Luck-Based Search Technique: Chunk's klutziness several times results in him accidentally uncovering something useful, like the secret entrance to the underground tunnel.
- Mrs. Walsh, Mikey Walsh, Data... Both Mikey and Data are called out on this when they mention "booty traps" (in Data's case, twice in quick succession).
- In fact, Brand is the only member of the Walsh clan that doesn't do this.Mrs. Walsh: Brandon, don't you come home without your brother, or I'll commit Hare Krishna!
Brandon: That's "Hara Kiri", ma.
Mrs. Walsh: That is exactly what I said!
- "Metaphor" Is My Middle Name: Mouth invokes this.Mrs. Walsh: You are so fluent in Spanish. That was so nice of you.
Mouth: "Nice" is my middle name, Mrs. Walsh.
- Mirror Character: Mike and One-Eyed Willie both have a fondness for Rube Goldberg devices (some are remarkably similar; Mikey's starts with a bowling ball and Willie's starts with a cannonball). Also, Mikey and Willie both have disabilities, Mikey with his asthma and Willie's one eye. To make it even more obvious, the Novelization says that Willie had asthma, too.
- Misfit Mobilization Moment: See Rousing Speech.
- Mistaken Confession: "Okay! I'll talk!"
- Moving Away Ending: The kids will be forced to move away if Troy's father forecloses on their families' mortgages and develops the neighborhood into a golf course. Defied when the kids manage to recover enough of One-Eyed Willy's treasure to pay off the mortgages.
- Mutilation Interrogation: Ma Fratelli threatens to have Chunk's hand pureed by a blender if he doesn't tell her where his fellow Goonies are. Chunk only escapes it by sharing embarrassing stories.
- Near-Villain Victory: Although the Fratellis are captured, the last booby trap cuts everyone off from the treasure (and releases the Inferno out to sea) so that the whole adventure seems to have been for nothing. But then, right as Mikey's dad is about to sign the Smug Snake developer's contract, Rosalita happens to check Mikey's marble bag...
- Never Say "Die": "Goonies never say die!"
- Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Data accidentally shoves Andy into the bone organ's keys, causing a wrong note and collapsing the floor all around them after fending off Jake and Francis. Whoops.
- Nice Job Fixing It, Villain:
- The Fratellis locking Chunk up with Sloth, whom he befriends and teams up with to save the rest of the group in the end.
- After the Goonies get past the bone organ trial, Francis tells Ma Fratelli to toss him a gun, which she throws into his gut by mistake. As he fumbles with it to try and shoot Brand and Andy, it turned out the gun wasn't even loaded.
- Nobody Poops: Averted. The gang stops to go to "the little boys' room" and "the little girls' room", though Brand elects to go to the "men's room"; Mouth and Data are quick to follow.
- No MacGuffin, No Winner: Subverted. It looks like the Pirate Booty is lost to both the Goonies as well as the Fratellis. But then Rosalita finds the gems in Mikey's marble bag. In reality, the police would have notified the U.S. Coast Guard, who would have chased down the pirate ship, and they would have found the cave. Even if the kids only got to keep a nominal piece of the treasure, they would be rich.
- Not My Driver: Chunk flags down a car to get a ride to the police station which turns out to be driven by the Fratellis.
- Nothing Exciting Ever Happens Here: Said word for word by Mikey in the beginning in an attempt to make himself feel less miserable about having to leave the Goon Docks.
- Oh, Crap!:
Data: HOLY S-H-I-T!
- The Fratellis' reaction when Sloth reveals his Superman shirt.
- Chunk's reaction when he sees the ORV with bullet holes parked in the garage of the old restaurant. The same ORV he saw being chased by the police earlier in the film.
- Chunk again when he calls a car to help him get the police... and sees that Jake Fratelli is the driver.
- The rock booby trap Mikey accidentally set off. Data trips when trying to run and looks up to see a rock about to crush him.
- The Goonies when they realize the Fratellis have caught up to them and quickly make a run for it.
- Everybody after they find the body in the freezer and the Fratellis come back while they're still in the basement.
- Oil Slick: Data's "Slick Shoes" invention is essentially the vehicular version in a shoe-sized package. He successfully applies it to a mast that crosses a river while being chased by the villains.
- One-Liner: When Andy worries that Chunk might be dead, Mike retorts with, "Goonies Never Say "Die"!" and continues his Rousing Speech.
- Only Smart People May Pass: The Goonies are tested by various booby traps, the most memorable being a musical riddle.
- O.O.C. Is Serious Business: When the Treasure Map is first found and Mikey asks Mouth to translate the Spanish on it, he begins with his typical snarky attitude, hamming it up and overdoing the Spanish/pirate accent...but by the end of the first stanza, as it sinks in just what they've found (and how threatening the lines are), this slowly fades, until he speaks rather quietly and slowly, with a rather pale face. Played for more comedy later, when Ma Fratelli realizes that Mouth is being oddly silent. She forces him to open up and fishes out a comically large amount of treasure from it.
- "Open!" Says Me: Mouth riles up Chunk until the latter attacks him but Mouth steps aside and Chunk rams in the door to the old restaurant.
- Over-the-Shoulder Carry: After Mikey sees Sloth in the Fratellis' restaurant and runs upstairs, an angry Brandon picks him up and carries him outside over his shoulder.
- Peek-a-Boo Corpse: Aside from the dead FBI agent in the freezer, at least one example occurs with one of Willy's crew on the deck of the ship. There's also the variation of the dead animal on the rake handle that Stef steps on, and of course Chester Copperpot.
- Pipe Maze: They run into one of these underground. Banging on the pipes to make noise ends up causing chaos for the country club above them. Sloth causes even more trouble when he pushes a pipe upwards, apparently leading to a traffic accident above.
- Pirate Booty: Mikey finds a Treasure Map leading to the "rich stuff" of legendary pirate One-Eyed Willy. We have to believe that Willie and his men spent vast amounts of time to built underground caves with weird booby traps to protect the treasure and one of Willy's men escaped to tell Willy's story, which became a legend.
- Post-Kiss Catatonia: Mikey after being accidentally kissed by Andy.
- Pretty Little Headshots: The corpse in the freezer was shot in the head, yet the bullet hole is so clean and tiny that it looks more like the Fratellis whacked him by putting a cigarette out on his forehead. No exit wound, either.
- Product Placement:
- Chunk is all over the product placement, famously befriending Sloth with a Baby Ruth candy bar. Pepsi makes several label-out appearances, also Domino's Pizza, and others. The Jeep Cherokee comes out looking real good too.
- Mikey reads MAD, which was and is co-owned with Warner Bros.. They did a parody anyway.
- Punctuated! For! Emphasis!: "There will be no more SIGNING! TODAY! OR EVER! AGAIN!"
- Punk in the Trunk: At one point Chunk finds himself in the trunk of the Fratelli's truck. Beside him, the corpse of the FBI agent he encountered in the freezer.
- Put Their Heads Together: Sloth does this to the Fratelli brothers during their fight on the ship.
- The Quest: A group of teenagers seek the treasure of One-Eyed Willy in order to save their town.
- Rake Take: After Stephanie and Andrea step on the rake it doesn't hit them in the face but pops up with a fish head on the other end.
- Realistic Diction Is Unrealistic: One of Mikey's general habits involve struggling to figure out the right word, often stumbling over himself repeatedly just to get a phrase out. His recounting of the story of One-Eyed Willy is also not a masterful rendition but very perfunctory to the point of almost being a run-on sentence, and sometimes backtracks when he forgot a detail.
- Reckless Gun Usage: The Fratelli Brothers routinely menace each other with guns when they bicker. Hell, their MOM does it to them several times.
- Rich Suitor, Poor Suitor: Troy and Brand, respectively, for Andy.
- Right Through His Pants: When Jerk Jock and Spoiled Brat Troy is sitting on a toilet at the country club at which the plumbing is going nuts due to the Goonies' shenanigans, he has taken his shorts down but is visibly still wearing underpants.
- Rope Bridge: Inside the cave, the group passes over a river using a wooden log with rope rails that tear which almost sends them into the water.
- Rousing Speech: Mikey's speech convinces the Goonies to continue following the Treasure Map after the Jerk Jock offers them a chance to be rescued.Mikey: Chester Copperpot! Don't you guys see? Don't you realize? He was a pro and he never made it this far! Look how far we've come. We've got a chance!
- Rube Goldberg Device:
- The gate opener at Mikey's house near the beginning of the movie. The name "Rube G" can be seen painted on the contraption that opens the yard gate for Chunk.
- A number of the booby traps.
- And the device that collapses the cave and frees the ship at the end.
- Rule of Three: The Goonies find two fake "treasures" (counterfeit money and coins at the bottom of a wishing well) before they reach the real thing.
- Running Gag: A character will mispronounce something, another character will supply the correct word and the first character will claim that's what they said.
- Done primarily by Mikey, as a kind of verbal characteristic. His mom does it too, implying that he probably gets it from her.
- Saw It in a Movie Once: Mikey's suggested plan to escape from the pursuing villains is based on a Hardy Boys story.Mikey: I saw this on the Hardy Boys once. We lead a trail of jewels into one cave, and then hide out in another, and when the Fratelli's go into that cave, then we can make a run for it.
- Say It: Or in this case, "Do It". Chunk is forced to do "The Truffle Shuffle" for the others before he can gain admittance to the Walsh house.
- Shipshape Shipwreck: One-Eyed Willie's 350-year-old pirate ship actually sails out onto the open seas at the end. While the ship is not submerged, it has been sitting in water for three centuries in a wet, brackish cavern with lots of moisture dripping from stalactites. Aside from the skeleton of Willie, the ship and even its sails appear to be in fairly good condition.
- Ship Tease: Between Mouth and Stef. A whole damn lot of it. The exchange they have in the deleted convenience store scene just reeks of Foe Romance Subtext:Stef: You still smell like a plumber's son.
Mouth: And you still smell like a fisherman's daughter.
- To Superman: The Movie, one of director Richard Donner's previous films. A few notes from the famous theme are played when Sloth reveals he's wearing a Superman T-shirt.
- "Just like that last prank about all those little creatures that multiply when you throw water at them." A shout-out to Amblin’s last movie, Gremlins, which came out exactly a year before this. This is also an allusion to another project one of the creators previous worked on, as Chris Columbus, the screenwriter for the movie, also wrote the original screenplay for Gremlins. In addition, Corey Feldman was in that film, too.
- Sloth is first seen wearing a Los Angeles Raiders T-shirt (when the film was shot, the Raiders were based in LA. They have since moved back to Oakland, then to Las Vegas in 2020). John Matuszak, who portrayed Sloth, formerly played for the Raiders.
- Sloth's "Hey you guys!" is a literal Shout-Out to Rita Moreno's famous intro in The Electric Company (1971).
- Mouth imitates Groucho Marx using his comb in place of a cigar when he delivers the "You wouldn't be here if it wasn't" line.
- Chunk says Sloth's growl "sounds like Kong".
- Skeleton Crew: The pirate ship is filled with skeletons of the former crew.
- Slippery Skid: Data's "Slick Shoes" lead to some nut-crunching acrobatics by the Fratelli brothers.
- Songs in the Key of Lock: A creepy pirate organ opens a door or collapses the floor depending on whether you play the right tune or not.
- Spikes of Doom: Data almost gets impaled by huge spikes when falling down a Trap Door.
- Take Back Your Gift: Andy returning Troy's jacket to him as a wordless breakup.
- Tap on the Head: The warden in the opening scene goes out after being punched by Jake Fratelli.
- Tastes Like Friendship: Chunk befriends Sloth with a Baby Ruth.
- Tempting Fate: After Chunk falls off the couch with the statue.Chunk: You thought I was gonna drop it, didn't you? (immediately drops it)
- Ten-Second Flashlight: A non-video-game example: Data activates his "Bully Blinders" because nobody else brought a flashlight to the cave. While the intense light does indeed blind the rest of the gang for a few moments, it also burns out the batteries just as quickly.
- Tentative Light
- They Know Too Much: The main reason the Fratellis go after the Goonies in the tunnels is because the kids know who they are and where their hideout is.
- They Wasted a Perfectly Good Sandwich: Francis threw a slice of pizza at Jake during one of their arguments.Jake: (throws a bucket at Francis) He was eating my pepperoni.
Francis: (pulls his gun out) You want your pepperoni? Huh? Huh! (throws a slice at Jake's face, prompting him to pull his gun)
- Third-Person Person: Sloth. Also Data, occasionally.Data: Data's okay. But Data's tired of falling and Data's tired of skeletons.
- This Way to Certain Death: The characters run across the long-dead body of treasure hunter Chester Copperpot in their search for One-Eyed Willy's ship. Some of them want to turn back, but Mikey convinces them that this is a good sign, because it means that they're on the right track, and they have already got farther than a professional treasure hunter.
- Three... Two... One...: Mikey passes the framed treasure map to Chunk because he knows Chunk will smash it open by accident which will give them an excuse to scrutinize it. Mikey even counts down on his fingers to the crash.
- Too Unhappy to Be Hungry: After Troy's father and his lawyer drop off the papers for the foreclosure on the Walsh house, Chunk says, "I think I lost my appetite." Subverted a minute later when he's seen spraying a can of whipped cream into his mouth.
- Trap Door: Data almost falls to his death when a trap door opens up under him leading down a hole with Spikes of Doom.
- Treasure Map: Mikey leads the Goonies with the centuries-old map hoping it still leads to Pirate Booty.
- Treasure Room: They find one on the pirate ship.
- Tricked-Out Shoes: Data has them, and despite his fellow Goonies' skepticism, they come in handy.Mouth and Mikey: Slick Shoes? Are you crazy?!
- Trolling Translator: Mrs. Walsh asks Mouth, who can speak Spanish, to translate her instructions to Rosalita, who doesn't know any English.Mrs. Walsh: Pants and shirts are in the second. Just throw them all into cardboard boxes. Forget the suitcases. Clark, can you translate all of that?
Mouth: Why certainly, Mrs. Walsh.
Mrs. Walsh: That's wonderful.
Mouth: (to Rosalita, in Spanish) The marijuana goes in the top drawer. The cocaine and speed in the second. The heroin in the bottom. Always separate the drugs.Mrs. Walsh: Now Rosalita, this is the attic. Mr. Walsh doesn't like anybody up here, ever. That's why it's always open.
Mouth: (in Spanish) Never go up there. It's filled with Mr. Walsh's sexual torture devices.Mrs. Walsh: This is my supply closet. You'll find everything you need: brooms, dustpans, insect spray. I would really like the house clean when they tear it down. Clark, can you translate?
Mouth: (in Spanish) If you do a bad job you'll be locked in here with the cockroaches, for two weeks without food and water.
Mrs. Walsh: Okay, Rosie? Okay? You're going to be very happy here. Come on, Clark, we've got much more to do. You're so fluent in languages!
Rosalita: (in Spanish) My God, I'm in a crazy house!
- Undead Author: According to the legend, One-Eyed Willie killed off all of his men after making the map; when asked how the map and story got out, Mikey comments that he asked his dad this too, and his dad said one of them must have escaped. The scene of the crime seems to imply that Willie and his top officers all killed each other off fighting over the treasure at the table - meaning that the survivor who escaped with the map was even smarter than Willy.Mikey: I know how these guys must have died. What a mess.
- Vile Villain, Saccharine Show: The Fratellis are quite dark and cruel for a PG-rated film that has become a family-friendly cult classic. Not only do they point guns at, and quite credibly threaten to shoot, each other over minor disputes, at one point they actually start the process of putting Chunk's fingers in a blender to make him give them information.
- Vomit Chain Reaction: Chunk claims he accidentally started one in a movie theater as a result of a practical joke involving fake puke. He admits he felt bad for doing it.Chunk: But the worst thing I ever done... I mixed up all this fake puke at home and then I went to this movie theater, hid the puke in my jacket, climbed up to the balcony and then, t-t-then, I made a noise like this: hua-hua-hua-huaaaaaaa! And then I dumped it over the side, all over the people in the audience. And then, this was horrible, all the people started getting sick and throwing up all over each other. And I never felt so bad in my entire life!
Jake: I'm beginning to like this kid, ma.
Ma Fratelli: HIT PURÉE!
- Walk the Plank: Ma Fratelli makes Andy walk the plank off the pirate ship. Mouth and Stef were about to have the same fate when Sloth came to their rescue.
- Water-Geyser Volley: This happens to Troy while he is in the bathroom, and Mikey and the others were fooling around with the water pipes. However, this would also count as a Special Effect Failure, because while Troy is thrust up into the air by the water from the toilet, you can clearly see the platform on which he is sitting that makes the stunt work.
- What Were You Thinking?: Stef barks this at Andy when she hits the wrong notes on the musical lock, causing part of the floor to collapse.Stef: What were you thinking?
Andy: I hit the wrong note! I'm not Liberace, you know!
- Word Salad Title: "Goonies" is not a pre-existing word and offers no hints as to what it means or what the film is about. Within the story, it refers to residents of the Goon Docks neighborhood of Astoria, Oregon.
- The World's Expert (on Getting Killed): Treasure hunter Chester Copperpot got killed by the first pirate booby trap he encountered. The Goonies decide to be inspired by the fact that they've made it farther than the expert.
- Worthy Opponent: Mikey very much treats One-Eyed Willy this way. And in an odd way, when Mikey warns the others not to take the treasure from the scales because "that's Willy's," the following reaction shot of his skeleton almost seems to suggest he respects Mikey for understanding that. In short, Mikey's respect for Willy turns out to save the Goonies.
- Zillion-Dollar Bill: One-Eyed Willy's treasure. Most of the treasure is lost completely, but the handful of gems that Mikey holds onto is enough to save the Goon Docks from being turned into a country club. (One flawless two-carat - that's .4 grams - Burmese ruby is valued at more than fifty thousand dollars.) That said, once the ship makes its escape to sea, you could assume a salvage convoy would bring it back in within a couple days and get a massive finder's fee for the Goonies. And besides that, when Mikey brings the jewels off the ship, he hasn't just laid claim to a few pretty rocks — under US and international maritime salvage law, the rights to a salvage vessel and its contents go to the person(s) who first successfully salvage something from a vessel. Since Mikey was that person for One-Eyed Willy's ship, the ship and everything on it is rightfully his. (In the epilogue of the novelisation, this is exactly what happens.)
The Novelization provides examples of:
- Adaptation Expansion: The novelization extends the story further and reveals details not shown in the film.
- One-Eyed Willy (real name William B. Pordobel) was originally a jester who got kicked out of multiple Spanish courts for being too vulgar, so he turned to piracy.
- Brand is claustrophobic, which Mikey first experienced when they got trapped in an elevator. Being in the caves triggers a relapse.
- A series of excerpts from the local newspaper reveals what happens after the Goonies save the Goon Docks, such as the country club getting bought out by Mikey's father, the fate of the Fratellis as they are sent back to prison, and Sloth adapting to his new life as a member of Chunk's family.
- Fictional Document: The novelization uses these to set the scene; excerpts from local Astoria newspaper articles, first detailing the escape of Jake Fratelli, and later covering the “rescue” of the kids, the arrests and prosecution of the Fratelli gang. They also detail the Happily Ever After - which is really happy.
- Happily Ever After: Detailed in the novelization through a series of excerpts from the Astoria newspaper; having successfully retrieved a handful of gems in his marble bag, Mikey - due to salvage laws - owns One-Eyed Willie's ship and everything on it. This results in a Karmic Jackpot: Paying off all the loans is of course chump change, but having done so, the developers are unable to build their golf course, and have to sell the property - and because no-one else in the area has enough money, the Goonies' parents buy everything and basically turn Astoria into the greatest small town in America. The land already bulldozed becomes low-income housing, and the country club which the developers built ahead of time becomes a community center. The Goonies' parents also build a children's center, a Chinese restaurant, a plumbing supply house, a fish market, and a public-access invention laboratory. The museum that Mikey's dad chairs even gets a new addition; One-Eyed Willy's ship! The last article is a notice of the Bar Mitzvah for Jason "Sloth" Cohen, the newly adopted son of Mr. & Mrs. Jerry Cohen.
- Humiliation Conga: In the novelization, the Goonies do more than just save their homes. There's enough money from the treasure left over that they buy the country club and then raze it, putting in a new museum, affordable housing, and other buildings.
- Impersonating an Officer:
- Part of Jake Fratelli's escape involves wearing the uniform of the guard he knocked out.
- The novelization reveals in the epilogue that the two FBI officers that the Fratellis killed actually were drug dealers as the Goonies originally thought. Jake is mentioned as willing to testify in court against their drug ring.
- Zillion-Dollar Bill: In the novelization, the results of the adventure result in enough funds — even after everyone pays off their leases — to not only buy the (now-unfinishable and worthless) country club and raze it to build affordable housing, but add numerous local fixtures (such as a brand new museum for Mikey's dad to chair).