8.1/10
300,277
601 user 108 critic

Stand by Me (1986)

After the death of a friend, a writer recounts a boyhood journey to find the body of a missing boy.

Director:

Writers:

(novel), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
Popularity
409 ( 134)

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

ON DISC
Top Rated Movies #194 | Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 4 wins & 11 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Groundhog Day (1993)
Comedy | Fantasy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

A weatherman finds himself inexplicably living the same day over and over again.

Director: Harold Ramis
Stars: Bill Murray, Andie MacDowell, Chris Elliott
Jaws (1975)
Adventure | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

A giant great white shark arrives on the shores of a New England beach resort and wreaks havoc with bloody attacks on swimmers, until a local sheriff teams up with a marine biologist and an old seafarer to hunt the monster down.

Director: Steven Spielberg
Stars: Roy Scheider, Robert Shaw, Richard Dreyfuss
Misery (1990)
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

After a famous author is rescued from a car crash by a fan of his novels, he comes to realize that the care he is receiving is only the beginning of a nightmare of captivity and abuse.

Director: Rob Reiner
Stars: James Caan, Kathy Bates, Richard Farnsworth
Drama | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

A boy who communicates with spirits that don't know they're dead seeks the help of a disheartened child psychologist.

Director: M. Night Shyamalan
Stars: Bruce Willis, Haley Joel Osment, Toni Collette
Gran Torino (2008)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

Disgruntled Korean War veteran Walt Kowalski sets out to reform his neighbor, a Hmong teenager who tried to steal Kowalski's prized possession: a 1972 Gran Torino.

Director: Clint Eastwood
Stars: Clint Eastwood, Bee Vang, Christopher Carley
Platoon (1986)
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

A young soldier in Vietnam faces a moral crisis when confronted with the horrors of war and the duality of man.

Director: Oliver Stone
Stars: Charlie Sheen, Tom Berenger, Willem Dafoe
Rocky (1976)
Drama | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

Rocky Balboa, a small-time boxer, gets a supremely rare chance to fight heavy-weight champion Apollo Creed in a bout in which he strives to go the distance for his self-respect.

Director: John G. Avildsen
Stars: Sylvester Stallone, Talia Shire, Burt Young
The Shining (1980)
Drama | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  

A family heads to an isolated hotel for the winter where an evil and spiritual presence influences the father into violence, while his psychic son sees horrific forebodings from the past and of the future.

Director: Stanley Kubrick
Stars: Jack Nicholson, Shelley Duvall, Danny Lloyd
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
William Bronder ...
Scott Beach ...
...
Edit

Storyline

It's the summer of 1959 in Castlerock, Oregon and four 12 year-old boys - Gordie, Chris, Teddy and Vern - are fast friends. After learning of the general location of the body of a local boy who has been missing for several days, they set off into woods to see it. Along the way, they learn about themselves, the meaning of friendship and the need to stand up for what is right. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

For some, it's the last real taste of innocence, and the first real taste of life. But for everyone, it's the time that memories are made of.

Genres:

Adventure | Drama

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

22 August 1986 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Body  »

Box Office

Budget:

$8,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$242,795 (USA) (10 August 1986)

Gross:

$52,287,414 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

In the Kiefer Sutherland TV show 24 (2001), there is a character also named Milo Pressman, played by Eric Balfour. See more »

Goofs

When Gordie is running from Chopper through the junkyard he runs past the same truck and trailer twice. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
The Writer: [voiceover] I was 12 going on 13 the first time I saw a dead human being. It happened in the summer of 1959-a long time ago, but only if you measure in terms of years. I was living in a small town in Oregon called Castle Rock. There were only twelve hundred and eighty-one people. But to me, it was the whole world.
See more »

Crazy Credits

In the edited-for-TV version, Lardass Hogan's name is shortened to Lard for obvious reasons. Yet even in the edited-for-TV version, the name "Lardass" is seen in the credits. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Black Widow (2002) See more »

Soundtracks

Let the Good Times Roll
Written by Shirley Goodman and Leonard Lee
Performed by Shirley Goodman (as Shirley) and Leonard Lee (as Lee)
Published by Atlantic Music Corp. / CBS Unart Catalog, Inc.
Courtesy of EMI America Records
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
One of the best adaptations of a Stephen King story ever.
2 April 2001 | by (Luoyang, China) – See all my reviews

Stand By Me is yet another one of the stories made into a movie from the author who has had more stories made into movies than any other author in history, Stephen King. Clearly, the central character here is Gordie Lachance, from whose point of view the story is told and who obviously symbolizes King himself, given many of his characteristics as well as some of the content of the film. This movie is literally filled with actors who have achieved varying degrees of success over the years, such as Jerry O'Connell, who played Vern, River Phoenix, who could have been bigger than Leonardo DiCaprio if he hadn't died, Corey Feldman, who has grown into an unenviable but visible existence, Kiefer Sutherland, who has become an excellent and very well known actor, John Cusack can be seen in a small role as Gordie's late brother, and of course, Richard Dreyfuss, who played the narrator and Gordie as an adult, has remained famous but originally achieved fame more than a decade before Stand By Me was filmed or the original story was even written.

Stand By Me takes place in the summer of 1959, the general time period that Stephen King is most skilled at presenting, and four friends set out to find the body of a kid who was killed by a train, hoping to find what they predicted would be astronomical fame. Unfortunately, the town's bullies are also out to find the body for the same reason, which leads to the films ultimate final climax. Even though this is a very clever story with which to tell a fall from innocence story, it is the brilliant characterization and the incredible acting that really make this a classic film. It is extremely rare that a film comes along that stars young kids and is so moving and powerful. Also, every one of those kids is made three dimensional in creative and smooth ways, making you feel like you really knew them by the end of the film. Vern is the fat kid who always gets picked on, Teddy and Chris both have abusive or deranged fathers, not to mention Chris's cruel brother, and Gordie is a young boy who lost his brother three months earlier in a violent accident and who has been largely ignored by his parents ever since. In one memorable scene, Gordie wonders how Teddy can be so enthusiastic about his father's alleged military achievements when the man once held his head to a stove, nearly burning his ear off. Gordie is mystified because he could care less about his own father, who hadn't laid a hand on him since he was three years old and got caught `eating bleach under the sink.'

Stephen King pokes fun at his own craft many times in the film, such as in Gordie's vehement line, `F*ck writing. I don't want to be a writer, it's a stupid waste of time!' Not only that, but there are also obvious references to his other works, such as when the boys first realize that no one brought food, and Teddy says, `This is great, what are we supposed to do, eat our feet?' People who actually read instead of just lazily watching the movies will recognize this as a major part of the plot of another of King's short stories, `Survivor Type,' from which Cast Away borrowed heavily. And why don't you people read these books? `The Body,' which Stand By Me was based on, is only 148 pages long, you could read that in a couple of hours and the experience is totally different from a movie. It's even more disturbing that `The Body' was published in the same book (Different Seasons) as a couple of King's other famous stories – `Apt Pupil' and, of course, `Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption.'

Stand By Me is a story of how one event can unexpectedly change lives. It seems to be a story about friends and how important they are, but this possible theme is clearly dispelled in a line from the narration spoken at the end of the film – `As time went on, we saw less and less of Teddy and Vern, until eventually they became just two more faces in the halls. It happens sometimes, friends come in and out of your life like busboys at a restaurant.' Instead, the film is about learning from a life changing experience and actually making changes or modifying your life in some way because of it, and this is heavily emphasized at the end of the film.

Stand By Me is a timeless film. Stephen King's story is skillfully brought to the screen under the direction of Rob Reiner, and the 1950s are brought back to life just as successfully as King so often does in his stories and novels, with the slicked back hair, the hot rods, and in the film, and excellent 50s soundtrack. There is so much more to this film than just the superficial story – things about the characters and the story, but also about the tremendously talented man who wrote it all.


234 of 265 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page