|Fig 1 - Stand By Me Poster|
Directed by Rob Reiner and based on the Stephen King novel of the same name, Stand By Me opens with a man pulled over to the side of the road, having clearly been affected by the news of a stabbing. From here we are transported back to the childhood of Gordie (Wil Wheaton), the man in question. We see him enter a cozily furnished tree-house, in which his friends Chris (River Phoenix) and Teddy (Corey Feldman) are smoking and playing cards. Soon after, another friend named Vern (Jerry O'Connell) rushes in to inform the group he's discovered the whereabouts of a dead body. They immediately decide they should hike along the railroad tracks and camp out overnight in order to claim credit for the body and so the boys' journey begins.
|Fig 2 - Stand By Me - Vern, Chris, Gordie and Teddy|
What's amazing is how all of this character development fits into a solid hour and a half, by the end of which you feel yourself truly understanding them. It all fits so neatly into this rural American 50's setting, with a terrific soundtrack that even frames a lot of the scenes. But even so, and it might be a huge cliche, the story really isn't about the ending, it's about getting there and coming to terms with their individual issues. This all comes to a head when we learn what happened to the boys later in life within the final scenes, which really rounds off the film in a satisfying way. It's got a lot of comradery, a lot of crass jokes and a ultimately a lot of heart. I'll definitely be coming back to this one again.
Fig. 1 Stand By Me Poster (1986) From: Stand By Me - Directed by: Rob Reiner
Fig. 2 Stand By Me Screenshot (1986) From: Stand By Me - Directed by: Rob Reiner