Stranger Things: Movie Analysis

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This “eight-hour movie” released on Netflix in the summer of 2016 became a cultural phenomenon within months, hurling it’s young cast and hitherto unknown creators, the Duffer Brothers ( identical twins Matt and Ross Duffer ), into near-instant celebrity.
At the centre of this thought-provoking supernatural horror story is a small group of socially awkward kids living in the early Eighties in Indiana.
Mike, Dustin, Lucas and Will love playing Dungeons and Dragons and riding their chopper-style bicycles. ( If this reminds viewers of the pastimes of the kids in a certain blockbuster 1982 film about a lovable alien, it’s no accident - Stranger Things is chock-full of nods to popular early Eighties films and books, and has a soundtrack of classic
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Some might argue that the success of Stranger Things simply comes down to good casting, an intriguing plot and a pleasing peppering of Eighties nostalgia throughout which appeals to an audience of a certain age.
Yet, this story is nostalgic in another way too - the main characters are simply “good guys” who care about each other. This works, and avoids feeling one-dimensional and dated, largely because of the inspired casting.
This is a heartening message to viewers in this era of deeply-flawed, anti-hero styled protagonists in film and TV. Game of Thrones, Orange is the New Black, and Breaking Bad are three examples of hit shows in recent years which have main characters who while often true-to-life in their complexity and fascinating to watch, can be deeply depressing too, because they almost always seem to do the wrong thing.
At it’s core, Stranger Things is a story with a lot of heart and soul - it’s about love, friendship and not giving up on those you care about ( when there are creepy government scientists lurking, and a creature with a toothed flower-bud for a face is trying to suck you into a parallel dimension!

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