April 22, 2021

5 Favorite Childhood Movies (from the 1980's)

I literally can't think of a single thing to write about today, so I chose a journal writing prompt: Favorite Childhood Movies. This sounded fun! I was born in 1982, so these movies are from the mid- to late-1980's.

There are a few movies that I remember watching over and over and over again. So much so that I can probably recite every line of each movie to this day. In no particular order...

1. Gremlins (1984)

I thought I remembered seeing this in the theater, but it was released in 1984 when I was just 2 years old, so I must have seen Gremlins 2 when it was in theaters in 1990. I've always loved scary movies, and to a 7 or 8 year old, this is pretty scary! I used to pretend that I had a mogwai (Gizmo) and I even convinced some of the neighborhood kids that I had one, hahaha. (I also convinced them that I was Pippi Longstocking's cousin.)

Gremlins is basically about a man who goes on a business trip and brings home a gift for his son--a mogwai, which is a cute little animal that you just want to cuddle with. If you break the rules that were given with the mogwai (no water, no food after midnight, and no sunlight) he can multiply and then they turn into these scary creatures called Gremlins that terrorize people. Naturally, the rules get broken...

2. D.A.R.Y.L. (1985)

Yes, this is the name of the movie. It stands for Data Analyzing Robot Youth Lifeform--and I didn't even have to look that up, haha. It was released in 1985; I think I remember watching it when I was about 7 or 8 years old. I'm not going to look up the details because I want to write this from memory--I'm curious to see if I remember correctly!

D.A.R.Y.L. (Daryl) is a robot that looks exactly like a live human boy (maybe about 10 years old?). He somehow winds up missing from the lab where he was created and is taken in as a "foster kid" by a family. He was told that he has amnesia and he basically just tries to learn to be a kid. He becomes best friends with a neighbor who discovers that Daryl is ridiculously talented at a video game (I think he had other abilities, too). I honestly don't remember much after that--I know that the lab wants him back (because nobody is supposed to know about him) and as a viewer, you just want him to live a happy life with his foster family.

3. Spaceballs (1987)

This is actually an interesting movie to have on the list, because it's a parody of Star Wars (which I did not know until a couple of years ago!) and I despise Star Wars. It's no secret that Jerry is a Star Wars nerd, so it's a little ironic. Funnily enough, when Jerry talks about Star Wars and I have no idea what he's referencing, I can relate it to Spaceballs--for example, if he mentions "Darth Vader", I might say, "Oh, you mean "Dark Helmet?"

I can recite whole scenes from this movie in my sleep. Jerry and I have this little "thing" between us where we quote lines from movies in our conversations, and even though Jerry was never into Spaceballs like I was, I do quote from it now and then. Or maybe I should say now now. Because we passed then. Just now.

4. Weekend at Bernie's (1989)

I have NO idea who introduced me to this movie; it's not exactly what I would call a "kids' movie". I actually think I might like it even more if I watched it now, because it's mostly humor that likely went right over my head when I was young. It was released in 1989, so I was probably 8-10 years old when I was into it.

From what I remember, Weekend at Bernie's is about a wealthy man named Bernie (who I believe is a drug dealer or something like that where he's involved with shady people) who has a house on the beach. He invites two guys that work for him to his place for the weekend to party. Bernie winds up dead and the two guys staying at his place pretend that he is still alive in order to have their fun for the weekend.

5. Adventures in Babysitting (1987)

I basically wanted to BE Chris Parker in this movie. I was probably the age of the kids she was babysitting (12 ish?) when I was obsessed with this movie. I don't know if Jerry's ever seen the whole thing--when I quote from it, he's clueless.

My favorite: "A mall? Where y'all think we're at, Boise, Idaho?"

In Adventures in Babysitting, Chris Parker is a VERY cool (my words, as a 12-year old) 17-year old girl who is asked to babysit a 15-ish year old boy and his sister, who is about 9 (I'm guessing their ages). Chris's friend Brenda calls her from downtown Chicago saying that she's in trouble and she needs a ride. So Chris takes the kids (along with the boy's friend) into the "big city" where all sorts of things start to go wrong. 

Interestingly, I just went to fact check the release date of this movie, and I saw a bit of trivia: The backpack that Sarah (the 9-year old girl) is always wearing has a picture of Gizmo on it (the mogwai from Gremlins). So... full circle.

This was fun! I always love a stroll down memory lane. Now I want to see which of these movies I can stream--I think it's been the longest since I've seen Weekend at Bernie's, so that will be my first choice.

Anyone else want to share some favorite movies from when you were a kid?


  1. You missed Goonies! One of my favorite movies of the 80s.

    1. Jerry and the boys LOVE The Goonies! I'm not sure why I never got into it. I remember watching it once with my friend Shannon, but after that, the next time I saw it was with Jerry and the kids. After reading Corey Feldman's memoir, though, I got interested in it again and watched it another time. I do love the coming-of-age films!

  2. Princess Bride
    Neverending Story
    Goonies (this one was amazing)
    Stand by Me

    1. The Princess Bride was a runner-up on the list. Great movie! And I didn't see Stand By Me until I was an adult. I read Corey Feldman's memoir, then started watching his movies ;) It was a great book!

  3. Oh mine are definitely The Goonies, and Back to the Future. I saw them in 1985, and they were playing together at the Drive-In movie theater. It was such a memorable night for me. It was like the stars aligned, and everything was perfect for once.
    A close third place movie that is a favorite is The NeverEnding Story. My best friend and I would run around on the playground having a competition on who could yell "Artax" the loudest! Haha! I mean, we didn't want our horse to sink! So whoever yelled it the loudest was able to save their horse! Haha!

    1. To this day, I have never seen Back to the Future! Jerry loves it, and I should watch it with him one of these days. Writing this post makes me want to watch a bunch of 80's movies. The night at the theater sounds awesome for you--I was just talking to my friend Renee about how we remember moments and how they made us FEEL more-so than what we were actually doing. It's a nice way to remember things!

  4. I LOVE Adventures in Babysitting. I prefer the "Don't F*#$ with the babysitter!" quote. My dad was always, "Get out of my house!" :-)

    1. YES! I couldn't decide between the two quotes, so I went with the former. But the scene on the train was awesome. That's funny about your dad!

    2. I used to use "Nobody leaves this place without singin' The Blues" all the time. Haha!

  5. Ha, three of these movies were definitely "things" for me - I am 5 - 10 years older than you. I can remember "Weekend at Bernies" being a big hit and it seeming like such a funny concept. I am sure it wasn't original, but to a kid everything is original.

    I still have never seen Gremlins because I thought it was too creepy/scary. I know a lot about the story, of course, because it was such a big hit.

    My husband and I love Spaceballs (and Star Wars). We do quote lines from this movie all the time... "and what does that make us? Absolutely nothing!" and "Take ONLY what you NEED to SURVIVE."

    My little sister and I loved, loved, loved "Adventures in Babysitting". I used to be able to quote lines from that, but now I just remember my favorite, the "ghost story" from the beginning of the movie: "She looked at the baby, and its face was just a pool of mushy goo!" "Like spaghettios?" "Spaghettios with meat!" We also loved spaghettios. I happened to see this movie again relatively recently, and it didn't stand the test of time so well for me.

    This was a fun post!

  6. I can't believe I never thought to use "Take ONLY what you NEED to SURVIVE." That's such a great quote to use when the situation arises, haha.

  7. UHF hits the barrier of the. 80s (1989), and was my favorite movie growing up! I would quote the movie scene by scene in high school!

  8. Hmm...not previously mentioned: "A Christmas Story",
    "Better Off Dead",
    "Killer Klowns From Outer Space",
    "Who Framed Roger Rabbit?",
    "Big Trouble In Little China",

  9. Better Off Dead, Princess Bride, Montey Pythons Search for the holy grail, Short Circuit, Ferris Buller, War Games, Arthur, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang

  10. I was born in 1989 so most of my memorable childhood movies are 90's Disney animated classics. My fav was Beauty and the Beast! I was also obsessed with The Santa Clause and The Wedding Singer (so random, I know, I still have both of those VHS tapes!) I did go through a phase when I was a teenager obsessing over all things 80's and my fav 80's flicks were definitely Back to the Future and Girls Just Want To Have Fun!


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