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'Stranger Things' as That Movie You Missed in the '80s

"Watching 'Stranger Things 2' is akin to letting a wave of '80s pop-culture nostalgia wash over you, carrying you back to movies and shows you loved from your childhood."11/07/2017 12:30 AM Eastern
A love letter to 1980s films, the first season of Netflix's Stranger Things was set in 1983 Indiana, where a young boy vanishes into thin air. As friends, family and local police search for answers, they are drawn into an extraordinary mystery involving top-secret government experiments, supernatural forces and one very strange little girl.

In Stranger Things 2, it's 1984 and the citizens of Hawkins, Indiana are still reeling from the horrors of the Demogorgon and the secrets of Hawkins Lab. Will Byers has been rescued from the Upside Down but a bigger, sinister entity still threatens those who survived.

"Watching Stranger Things 2 is akin to letting a wave of '80s pop-culture nostalgia wash over you, carrying you back to movies and shows you loved from your childhood," writes Brian Tallerico. "The Duffer Brothers have created a fascinating entertainment phenomenon by mining so much of what people loved about the era." To read the full article, click here.

"The references made to '80s movies, music, and culture alone require an ever-attentive eye and ear to what's going on," adds Ben Travers.

Gaten Matarazzo, Caleb McLaughlin, Sadie Sink, Noah Schnapp, and Finn Wolfhard in 'Stranger Things 2.' Photo courtesy of Netflix

"We don't necessarily pull from genre movies," Matt Duffer, co-creator of the show, tells Peter Rubin. "Sometimes you're like, 'How do I shoot this?' and you try to think of a comparable scene. And so we’ll look at Peter Weir's stuff, sometimes—he can use a zoom really well, and you have to be really careful how you use zooms."

"We have a dancing scene this year," adds Ross Duffer, Matt's twin and co-creator, "and we were talking about Steadicamming around the kids. Then we watched that scene in Witness in the barn where they're just dancing to oldies—it's so good, but the filmmaking is so simple. And it was just like, 'let's just let the scene be what it is.'" To read the full interview, click here

"There are infinite '80s references to mine," Ross tells Debra Birnbaum. "We try not to be too egregious about it, but sometimes we can’t help ourselves. To me it’s just this is a love letter to the stuff we grew up loving and we just want to tip our hats to them. Best case scenario, there’s some 12 year old kid watching the show and maybe he hasn’t seen some of these films. And maybe our show will be the gateway drug so to speak leading back to these classics that inspire us." To read the full article, click here

"My dream and my job was to help make this thing feel like it was shot back then," the show's cinematographer Tim Ives tells Matt Grobar. "That was our goal, to make this thing feel like something that you’d lost and you hadn’t seen in such a long time. You missed it in the '80s, and you were going to watch it now—a found piece. That was the desire, and that was everybody's mantra." To read the full interview, click here

David Harbour and Millie Bobby Brown in 'Stranger Things.' Photo courtesy of Netflix.

"People love the nostalgia of the show—even those who were born after the '80s, like the Duffers themselves," writes Charles Moss

"I think what's surprising about it to everyone is that it's connecting with a younger generation," Matt explains. "But I feel like there's something appealing about that time to a younger generation, I think—the pre-cell phone freedom, the way that kids were growing up then. I think maybe there's something there that holds a real strong appeal." To read the full article, click here

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