Sometimes a movie comes along that is just a fun film. One that sticks with you no matter how old you get and when you see it on the shelf at a store you are compelled to pick it up from your fond memories of it alone. *Batteries Not Included is one of these films and boy was it fun to watch again after all these years.
Todays Key Movie:
Released in 1987, this film follows the tenant’s of a building in New York that is under the threat of demolition from a real estate conglomerate who wants to build condos. The elderly building managers and their tenants of the building refuse to leave as this has been their home for much of their lives. Just when things look bleak, small robotic life forms arrive and begin to help out the people living in the building. Light hearted and heartfelt, this movie is one that is fun for the whole family.
Why this movie?
*Batteries Not Included was a film that hit theaters in 1987 and, although heartfelt and somewhat popular, isnt one that people tend to remember these days. Originally intended to be an episode of the Spielberg tv series Amazing Stories, it was adapted into a feature film when Spielberg himself thought it would be better served on the big screen. This movie also marks the feature film writing debut of Brad Bird who would later go on to be known for his works like The Iron Giant and The Incredibles.
This movie was one of many ‘feel good’ films of the 80’s and I do remember it fondly. I remember seeing it in theaters and leaving feeling a little lighter. I can’t express how often I wished for a little alien robot to show up at our house and fix things. They were some of the coolest robotic creatures in the same line of robots like Johnny 5 of Short Circuit and even the famous Star Wars Droids. In addition to the horror trend of the 80’s, robots and the like were wildly popular as well and these little alien androids were some of the best.
How did this translate to real life?
Like I said, this is one of the ‘feel good’ films of the 80’s. It was a nice bright spot in the dark of the times and man did we enjoy that in our entertainment. This was one that gave you a sense of hope. No matter how bleak and dark things look, something will come together and get better. That is hope, and movie like this are there to remind you that its worth keeping in mind.
Okay, you like this film, but is it really a ‘good film’?
It is a perfect family film. There is nothing in it that is offensive at all. This is one of those timeless films that people refer to as ‘Spielberg’ films. Spielberg films have a certain air about them. They have a timeless quality to them, no matter how old they get, they still feel as new as ever. If you want a nice joyful family film from the 80’s this is one that you need to get. It will make you laugh, cry and by the end you will be smiling from ear to ear.
The acting is pretty typical for its time, a little over the top at times but only where it’s needed. The special effects of the alien robots are fantastic. They certainly benefited from having Spielberg on tap and you can see his DNA all over this one.
I am shocked to this day that there hasn’t been any kind of followup, but part of me is glad that they havn’t tried to do a remake…yet.
OK, where do I get this movie?
You can pick this little gem up pretty much anywhere. Best Buy has it for $10 on blue ray HERE and I do recommend snagging it up for your library.
as always, here is the trailer
Thanks for reading, many more key movies to come. If you would like to read others in this series of posts please check out my previous entries with The BeastMaster and The Last Starfighter , as always, please feel free to comment below and share your experiences with these movies as well. If you just happend by, please tell me what you think!
Late To The Game 11/15/17