Review of Stand By Me

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Neil W

Well-Known Member
May 27, 2008
1,203
2,585
Isle of Wight UK
#1
Four lads in their early teens have heard that there is a dead body lying in the woods some miles away and, out of morbid curiosity, go on a camping trip to investigate.

Stephen King's novella uses this simple framework to create a work which examines friendship, family, remembrance, bravery, bullying, and a wealth of other things, in a quietly emotional and gently humorous way. And, glory be, Rob Reiner's movie manages to capture all that subtlety while looking gorgeous and featuring wonderful performances from young actors who, for various reasons, mostly never quite fulfilled the potential they showed here.

There is, of course, an element of the macabre here - it is Stephen King, after all - but this is incidental: there is far more laughter than horror.

This is a quietly excellent movie.
 

Cowboy

Lesser-Known Member
Feb 17, 2007
11,024
5,646
Calla Bryn Sturgis
#5
Loved this movie when it came out. I remember watching it on a date with a girl that was a rocker. Not my normal dating scenario but she was a looker. She hated it and thought it was boring, I loved it! We didn't go out anymore after that. If you can't like a Stephen King story, I don't have much use for you.
 

guido tkp

Well-Known Member
Oct 1, 2009
2,632
475
outside the dome
#7
quite simply...a great film...near perfect adaption...could not ask for more...

and rob gave us the also awesomely great Misery adaption...

as well as the splendiferously wonderful classic adaption of The Princess Bride....

the man's got talent...for a meathead
 
Likes: Neesy
Mar 28, 2014
21
84
35
#10
Amazing novella and a fantastic adaptation. Could easily have just turned out to be another ordinary movie but Reiner really achieved something special with this one. One of my favourite movies ever. Me and my friend still love to throw out quotes every so often :)
 
Likes: Neesy

OldDarth

Well-Known Member
Jul 10, 2006
722
2,907
Canada
#13
Lovely movie.

Love the closing scene with Dreyfuss typing out the last line of the story:

" I never had any friends later on like the ones I had when I was twelve. Jesus, does anyone?"

The fade out shot with River Phoenix and his character's fate are doubly haunting given what happened to him.
 

Neesy

#1 fan (Annie Wilkes cousin) 1st cousin Mom's side
May 24, 2012
57,807
215,229
Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
#14
quite simply...a great film...near perfect adaption...could not ask for more...

and rob gave us the also awesomely great Misery adaption...

as well as the splendiferously wonderful classic adaption of The Princess Bride....

the man's got talent...for a meathead
I like the movie quite a bit too!
 

summer_sky

Well-Known Member
Oct 15, 2015
414
1,999
#16
My nursing course included the showing of two movies: Stand By Me and Whose Life is it Anyway? The reason for these movies being considered worthy was due to their respective educational value. In the case of Stand By Me the movie presented four distinct stages in child development.
Really? I find this as interesting as the novella and film adaptation are excellent.

So, what are the four stages of childhood development?
 

Pucker

We all have it coming, kid
May 9, 2010
2,906
6,214
57
#17
Love the closing scene with Dreyfuss typing out the last line of the story:

" I never had any friends later on like the ones I had when I was twelve. Jesus, does anyone?"
It's a very good line, there's no denying that. I suppose I like the original "Did you?" better because of its immediacy. "Does anyone?" is a bit -- what's the word? -- existential for me. He's assuming a universal condition that everyone will recognize -- lost youth -- but in the original I get the impression that Gordie is actually wondering if he's unique, personally, in this way.

Could be I've got it all wrong.

That happens sometimes.
 

summer_sky

Well-Known Member
Oct 15, 2015
414
1,999
#18
It's a very good line, there's no denying that. I suppose I like the original "Did you?" better because of its immediacy. "Does anyone?" is a bit -- what's the word? -- existential for me. He's assuming a universal condition that everyone will recognize -- lost youth -- but in the original I get the impression that Gordie is actually wondering if he's unique, personally, in this way.

Could be I've got it all wrong.

That happens sometimes.
I totally get what you are saying, Puck. I think.
In the sense of Immediacy vs Existential.

For me, reading is a much more intimate and personal experience than is watching a film.
With reading, there is a much bigger sense of immediacy because the story... the author's words... is/are playing out within my own mind and imagination whereby influenced by the infinite nuances of my own interpretations of life perspectives and experiences.
I am the canvas and the author is the painter, so to speak. There is a unique and innate Immediacy. An intimacy, if you will.

When watching a film, I feel more removed and more of an observer.
No matter how well the scriptwriter and director and producer and the whole bevy of crew and technical advisers... including the author, in some cases... transform the story from words on a page to the big screen (and/or television), there is always someone else's interpretation of the story between me and author's words.
The nuances of somebody else's interpretation(s) gets between me and the story and the Immediacy is diminished.

Know what I mean?
 
Likes: Pucker
#20
Absolutely. Captures the book very well. River Phoenix in one of the leads. brother of joaquin, who died young. If i'm not completely misremembering here John. C Reilly plays one of the boys. A good character actor nowadays
Jerry O'Connell played the part of "Vern" / Verno" (the shorter, heavier kid who jumped off the tracks) --- the character was based on me,,, I even have a photo of me wearing that striped shirt and walking with my brother whom Stephen used as a character in another movie....
 
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