Hundreds of flicks pass by these eyelids on a yearly basis, forgettable or memorable, and even through all this movie watching there will always be the ones that are cherished for a lifetime. One of those stories, built into the walls of my heart, had a little 25th Anniversary this year.
|(Our Semi Train Dodge)|
One of the great stories brought into the world (thank you Stephen King), and how else can we honor it except by sending out a personal love letter regarding Stand By Me as a treasured classic.
Excuse me, this is probably going to get cheesy and heartfelt. Bare with me while I gush.
In 1986, the year of the movies release, I was still TBD, but about a year later would make my grand entrance on the great stage of life. With this in mind, it's hard to say the first time I saw Stand By Me, as I feel like I grew up with it always around influencing my daily life.
Based in the 1950s, starring a cast of hooligans played by men and young boys (with the exception of maybe a waitress and a mother), how can a girl in today's world relate to anything this movie has to say? This is where the true beauty of a timeless movie comes to play.
It is hard to imagine anything else that has perfectly captured what it is like to grow up. Or even more specific, what it is like to spend one of those endlessly leisure filled summer days, just hanging out under the sun with your friends, no worries in the world. It doesn't matter what gender, we all, hopefully, have these experiences to look back on.
As the years creep by, more quickly it seems the older I get (damn. I always heard this happens!), I sometimes long for those days, but then I remember the tough parts that comes along with the ease. Who really wants to relive high school?
Watching Stand By Me allows us all to dwell on the past, thinking about those who have come in and out of our lives over the years, like busboys at a restaurant (a pitch perfect statement from the film). We can relish on the grand memories without actually having to live through it a second time.
Meaningful story aside, what truly pulls the whole film together is the dynamic pairing of Will Wheaton, River Pheonix, Jerry O'Connell, and Corey Feldman. From the continual heart-beating scene involving a train dodge (every time I think they are going to get hit!), to running away from a maniac dog in a junk yard, to bonding around a campfire with a pack of smokes, it was not hard to imagine these kids were actually friends causing a menace, as boys will do, around their small town.
Their dialogue between one another is classic and instantly quotable. When referring to a crazy person the first thing to come out of my mouth is always the line, "My dad stormed the beaches of Normandy!" followed by "Looney", "Looney", "Looney". Also, many lines can be drawn from the hilarious conversation around a camp fire, including pondering the question everyone wants the answer to, "God, that's weird. What the hell is Goofy?" Oh, Vern.
Over the years we loose touch with people, and others are taken away from us (an undeniable truth that is sadly echoed throughout the entire film), but just as the four friends learn, life is really about the experiences, big and small, profound and trivial, finding a dead body or the entire voyage, that connects us all together.
Stand By Me, here's to another 25! Don't you go changing on me now! We'll be here continuing to bask in your excellence.