Genre Guesstimation – Grandview, U.S.A. (1984)

The idea behind this feature (Genre Guesstimation) is for me to watch a bunch of new movies (or ones that I haven’t seen many times) from the chosen monthly GG genre in order to expand my knowledge of movies within that particular genre.

This month’s genre has been chosen by Todd of The Forgotten Filmz Podcast and we will be reviewing our favorite 80’s Teen Films.

Please get me your submissions by the 25th of Sep by sending them to

Try to think out of the box! Great choice Todd!

Let’s see if I felt that this movie would be worthy of being in the company of my others favorite movies in the genre of 80’s Teen Films…..

“Lock me up, it’s a crime to feel THIS good!” – Ernie ‘Slam’ Webster

Number of Times Seen – 1 (7 Sep 2020)

Brief Synopsis – A teenager tries to find direction in his life after graduation when he is conflicted between following his dream or listening to his overbearing father who wants him to get a steady job.

My Take on it – This is a movie that I recall hearing about when it came out in the theaters and the again when it debited on cable, yet never had much of a desire to watch until now.

The cast of this film is superb with Jamie Lee Curtis, C. Thomas Howell and Patrick Swayze all looking good here.

Unfortunately, their characters are all far too underdeveloped and despite getting into some sticky situations it’s so hard to really care about them or anything that they do here.

The story is told in a very superficial way and it’s so difficult for them to make anything that happens come across as feeling more powerful due to the kind of light tone of the plot.

The bets scenes in this movie are the demolition derby scenes because they find ways to make these crashes seem so much fun to watch.

The film has a few side plots that also drag things down a bit most notably the whole political aspect of the story and it all comes across in a very unrealistic way which is a shame.

Bottom Line – Intriguing concept that just doesn’t work well enough, The cast of this film is superb with Swayze, Howell and Curtis all looking great but their characters are all presented as being far too shallow and there is very little reason to care about any of them. The story itself feels a bit too superficial and doesn’t manage to make things more powerful due to the tone of things. The best scenes are the demolition derby scenes which are so much fun to watch. The story tries to add in some side stories dealing with politics but that just doesn’t work in a realistic way.

MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – Patrick Swayze’s song, “She’s like the wind”, was originally written by him for “Grandview USA”, as a love theme between Swayze and Jaime Lee Curtis’s characters, but it was scrapped, due to the comedic and somewhat raunchy nature of the film. It would eventually be used three years later in Swayze’s film Dirty Dancing (1987). (From IMDB)

Genre Grandeur Worthy? – Not really. Fun concept and cast, but the story and characters come across as being too shallow and underdeveloped

Rating – BAFTA Worthy (5/10)


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2 thoughts on “Genre Guesstimation – Grandview, U.S.A. (1984)

  1. Pingback: Genre Grandeur September Finale – Three O’Clock High (1987) – Forgotten Filmz | MovieRob

  2. Pingback: Temporal Top Ten – 1984 | MovieRob

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