Popfilter Vs Our Childhood


In which we reminisce about childhood entertainment, then go back and watch it and re-assess. 

Daniel Tompkins


imagesA Goofy Movie

Rather than pick a movie that I felt defined my childhood I tried to find something that represented the kind of movies I watched without being so famous that I’ve been inadvertently absorbing it ever since or so niche and unknown that I’m only picking it to show you how unique and special my childhood was.  I just wanted to find a simple, goofy movie.  That’s where Disney had my back.

I like A Goofy Movie as a choice for several reasons.  I saw it exactly once, in theaters, and loved it.  I haven’t seen or thought about it since until just now, so I’m not exactly bringing a lot of baggage to the table.  It’s also one of those weird mid-90’s movies that were trying to capitalize on how crazily 90’s everything was while simultaneously trying to figure out what the fuck that means.  There’s gonna be a lot of skateboards and backwards hats and neon and at some point Goofy calls something ‘radical’ or whatever.  It’s also from that period where Disney really just started thrashing around desperately trying to figure out how to make Disney movies.  Tall Tales and A Kid In King Arthur’s Court are two other examples of Disney films from around this era so I’m pretty sure this is going to be a movie that isn’t quite sure of who it is on multiple levels.

I’m basically just using A Goofy Movie as the poster boy for a very large number of brightly colored, hyperactive kids movies that have all sort of blended together in my memory anyways.  I think I’ll chuckle quietly exactly twice, snort air out of my nose an additional 2-3 times and hate everything that’s happening during the scenes with Pauly Shore.  Let’s see if I’m right.








Yep.  This was pretty much exactly what I thought it was going to be. I slightly overestimated the 90’s-ness but way underestimated the weird copy-of-a-copy-of-a-copy effect, now known as “Community Season 4 syndrome.”  The 90’s really were just a weird time for Disney.  They went through this giant re-branding process where they were desperately trying to make children care about cartoon characters who were like 100 years old already, and they simultaneously started churning out these weird, almost straight-to-DVD quality movies at an incredible pace.

In a way A Goofy Movie defines my childhood almost perfectly, at least as far as movies go.  There were several scenes I remembered thinking were really cool when I first saw it and kept waiting for, only to realize they were actually from another movie entirely.  It’s just a vague, swirling cloud of buzzwords and spastic plotting that are easily interchangeable.  In my childhood there were a few standout movies that slowly helped me distinguish good from bad, but there were far more movies like this that just form a hazy background for those.

It’s hard to judge your own childhood, but based on this movie I give it a “yea”.  Not a resounding, confident yea but certainly not a nay either.  It’s an average-sounding yea, for an average movie that was part of an average childhood.  For my next Vs Our Childhood I’ll either review the extremely quirky choice of Dead Presidents or go full TMNT on it and maybe we’ll get a better picture, but for now my childhood remains shrouded in amorphous 90’s mystery, too self-aware and awkward to be truly judged. Or just give it 2 1/2 stars. Whatever. – DT