Thursday, June 17, 2010

Behind the Scenes... with Short Circuit

Finally, part 3 of my little series of movie locations in Astoria, Oregon. And I'm getting to another great movie about a robot who comes alive, Short Circuit. Although I don't have as many locations as the previous ones, there is plenty to tell.

Actually, there is only one location, Stephanie's home, that is highlighted as a location in Astoria. And it is a HIKE to get to the house. You remember how I talked about the hills with The Goonies, how the roads were just that steep as seen in the high speed car chase? Well, the SO and I hiked up one of those roads (on foot, because the rental car was NOT going to make it). Or should I say, we hiked up to the END of the road, where the house is located at the top of this hill, or mountain, or really high topographical point in Astoria.

First, we decided we'd park the car at the bottom of the hill, behind the visitor's center. The map we had showed that this would be the best place to park, because it'd be almost a straight shot up the road. Little did we know this road was an incline, a HUGE incline!

And to top it off, where it looks like the road ends, that's where the road actually continues, as a dirt path!

We had no idea if we were going up a road or a private drive. All we knew is that there were trees on top of us and we had no idea what was at the end of this path.

Luckily, the house was there.

It looks much like it did in the film. Of course there are differences, like no huge back yard for Number 5 to take apart a car. But the view is amazing.

I just have no idea how Stephanie could drive her vehicle down that road. It's deadly on foot, I can't imagine trying to safely get that down and across the Astoria bridge.

So, there you have it. The three films and their locations that the SO and I explored while in Astoria, Oregon. It was a lot of fun, and I hope to do another pilgrimage to other film locations. But it'll be hard to top what we could see in just one town. I think the SO went crazy over the Goonies locations, while I shed a tear every time we went to a location where Ah-nald once breathed. All in all, it was a film lover's dream come true... although it would have been cool to find Number 5 and ask how to program robots to recreate the 3 Stooges...

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Behind the Scenes... with Kindergarten Cop

I'm back with another installment of Behind the Scenes, and this time we're looking at Kindergarten Cop. Can you believe the SO has never seen this movie? Her childhood has to be deemed incomplete for missing this Ah-nald gem of a film. Of course there are plenty of locations in the town of Astoria, Oregon which we went to to see if they still looked the same or if they were just a fading memory.

So, where should we begin? I would start with the school, but better yet, let's start with the hotel where Ah-nald would have stayed while in Astoria, the Bay View Inn.

This is the location of his room, number 5. And from the outside, it looks exactly like it does in the film. The interior was recreated in Hollywood, but the exterior is all Astoria. I almost feel "pumped up" just being there.

Now, we can go to the school, as this is where Ah-nald is going to teach little children how to be good little soldiers in his boot camp.

It's a little hard to tell, but the paintings on the outside of the building (as seen in the movie) are still there!

There were created by local Astorian artists, which makes it that much cooler.

Ah-nald gets to know his fellow pedagogue, Rachel Crisp/Joyce Palmieri, at the restaurant located here, at the Red Lion Inn.

A very romantic spot near the water. I can just smell the Ah-nald sweat from that encounter.

The villain in this film, Cullen Crisp, Sr., gets a toy train set from the local drug store.

Now, this location is actually a restaurant. Too bad. I really like toy train sets...

The theater is diagonal from the drug store, which made the pilgrimage nice and short between these two locations.

And this short pilgrimage meant that the next would involve walking up a "hill", with what had to be a 25% incline, to get to Rachel/Joyce's home in Astoria. No wonder everyone in the town is fit. If I had to walk that everyday, I'd be as fit as Ah-nald, too!

So those are the locations I was able to visit from Kindergarten Cop while in Astoria. Of course, it was very awkward taking pictures in front of the elementary school as class was still in session! Very awkward, indeed. The SO didn't want to be in any of the pictures as she hadn't actually seen the movie. That's why she's the party pooper...

Okay, enough with the Ah-nald jokes. But seriously, it was amazing to see how the locations were, compared to what we see in the movie. I can't wait to buy the DVD and watch it all over again!

Because we all need our Ah-nald fix every day...

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Behind the Scenes... with The Goonies

I know I haven't done this whole blogging thing in almost a year, but I do have a special 3-part series of blog posts that I want to do. Mostly because I don't want to forget the experiences I had while traveling the Pacific Northwest. Because we all know what kind of memory I have for... what was it I was writing about?


Oh yeah, so I'm going to do a 3-part series of blog posts on three unique movies that were all filmed in... Astoria, Oregon! It was really cool to see some of the locations for the films I'll be describing. The first film to discuss has to be The Goonies, as it just screams Astoria (on top of sweet memories from childhood). The SO and I were both excited to see where Mikey, Brand, Mouth, Data, and especially Chunk had their misadventures in the Goondocks of Astoria.

I'll try to do this in order, so it goes with the flow of the movie. You can follow along with this clip of the opening sequence:

Of course, the beginning of this tour means we begin at the county jail...

Not a bad action shot, if I do say so myself. (I was actually just holding myself in that position, trying to look like I was running.) And let me tell you, those hills the cops chase the Fratellis across are just as steep as they look.

Here's the football field, where Andy is trying to get the cheerleaders to do a pyramid.

The seating section is very "old school", with sections reserved for ticket holders, students, and the band. Astoria High School has the Fighting Fisherman as their mascot, and his name is Stomper.

This location is where the maid tried going across the street, supposedly because she was walking to the house of Mikey and Brand, I think.

The funny thing about this location: the direction she was walking was actually towards the beach. So if she was trying to get to the house, she actually needed to turn around and go the other way... to the Goonies house!

The bowling alley where Chunk sees the high speed car chase looks the same from the outside, but the window where he's looking out has changed a bit.

The view from where he's looking is pretty dead on, too.

The beach where the Fratellis speed away is Cannon Beach, which is where you can find the famous Haystack Rock.

Of course, we're then transported to... the Goonies house!

I know, it's pretty sweet. And yes, I did the Truffle Shuffle in front of the house, which I have video of on my phone. I know, it's so awesome! No cars are allowed up the drive to the home, but we were both willing to walk up the hill to see not only the house, but the view of Astoria, as well.

The view from the Goonies house is just as beautiful as it appears in the movie.

I can't forget Data's house...

But the bike ride the boys take from the house to the Fratellis' hide-out is not as short and quick as they make it out to be. The bike ride starts at 1:45...

We measured it out, and the Goonies house is approximately 20 to 30 miles from the abandoned restaurant! What kid (especially Chunk, or for that matter, asthmatic Mikey) is going to make it that far?

On that deceiving bike ride, the boys pass Mike and Brand's father as he takes the flag down at his museum, which in real life is the Flavel House.

We traveled to Ecola State Park, which is south of Astoria about 20 miles, to the approximate location where the boys leave their bikes in the road to find the location of the buried treasure.

The final location of the film is again near Haystack Rock (I just wanted to get another picture of it in this post!).

The rest of the locations are either non-existent or were created in a Hollywood studio. No matter what, it was pretty cool to see these locations and how they are a part of the town of Astoria!

Of course, this weekend Astoria is having a Goonies 25th anniversary reunion, which includes cast members and a Truffle Shuffle 5K! The gods really must like to toy with us as we were two weeks early! Oh well, we got a t-shirt, some amazing pictures, and wonderful (and sweaty) memories of the Goonies locations in this tiny town off the coast of Oregon.