POP GOES THE DECADE- A totally rad look back at the glorious 80's and all the flicks, fashions, tunes, and TV shows that made the decade so cool and memorable in the first place. Like, for sure!

Monday, May 21, 2012

The Lost Boys

     Sam and Michael (played by Corey Haim and Jason Patric) are two teenage brothers living in Phoenix, AZ who's parents have just divorced.  Mom takes the two boys and moves to Santa Carla, California, crashing with eccentric and somewhat grouchy grandpa.  The sleepy little town just happens to be known as the murder capital of the world, and even scarier than that, their mom (memorably played by Dianne Wiest) is dating again. Yikes! On top of all that, they soon find something else to worry about. While younger brother Sam is busy trying to find an MTV hookup and checking out the comic book collection in town, older brother Michael meets gypsyesque Star, played by Jami Gertz.  Star belongs to a gang of forever-young, teen punks obsessed with Jim Morrison, led by a fantastic Kiefer Sutherland (in a star-making role).  Michael becomes further and further involved with the mysterious gang, and soon finds out that they're all vampires.

     Probably one of the most-loved movies of the 80s, "The Lost Boys" is not only a superb time-capsule of the decade, but often considered one of the greatest modern vampire tales ever to hit the big screen.  Joel Schumacher's teen vampire flick completely epitomizes the 1980s in all their glory- and was the first film to put both Corey Feldman and Corey Haim together.  Although tongue-in-cheek are far from actually "scary"- "The Lost Boys" is still known as a horror classic.  It definitely has a more fun approach, as it successfully walks the tightrope between schlocky teen horror and comedy.  It's a perfect popcorn movie, and it holds up pretty good today.

     Surprisingly, "The Lost Boys" is filled with some great performances.  Every one involved seems completely right for the part- and this may be Haim's finest hour on screen.  Jason Patric is perfect for his role,  Barnard Hughes steals the show as cantankerous Grandpa, Dianne Wiest is simply delightful as the boys frazzled-but-determined mom, and even Alex Winter (Bill from "Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure") makes a cameo as one of the undead.  And let's not forget the Frog Brothers, played by Jamison Newlander and Corey Feldman.

      It may seem a bit dated today, but after watching it again recently I was surprised at how well it still holds up.  I like that it doesn't take itself too seriously- there are elements of humor, horror, and good old-fashioned camp running gleefully throughout.  "The Lost Boys" is one of the best remembered and most loved films of the 80s- it's slick, it's stylish, and it's a huge cult classic today.  Whether or not this is mostly from the films' own merits or pure pop nostalgia, I can't say. Probably both. Doesn't matter though.  It's still darn fun to watch.

     And one more thing.... there are some definite homo-erotic undertones running throughout "The Lost Boys".  First of all, why does Corey Haim's character have a poster of a rather seductive looking Rob Lowe in his closet?  Go back and watch the movie.  You'll see it.  Trust me.

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