The Netflix Stephen King Drama Is One Of His Top 10 Greatest Movies

By Charlene Badasie | Published

The 1986 coming-of-age film Stand By Me is streaming on Netflix. The movie is based on Stephen King’s novella The Body from the short story collection Different Seasons. It is directed by Rob Reiner from a screenplay by Raynold Gideon and Bruce A. Evans. The cast includes Wil Wheaton, River Phoenix, Corey Feldman, Jerry O’Connell, and Kiefer Sutherland.

An Unforgettable Adventure

Stand by Me is set in the fictional town of Castle Rock, Oregon, during the summer of 1959. The story chronicles the journey of four young boys who decide to find the body of a missing boy named Ray Brower and, in the process, discover more about themselves and their friendships. Gordie Lachance recalls this pivotal event from his childhood as he reads about a fatal stabbing in 1985.

Raised in the shadow of his deceased older brother, Denny, Gordie (Wil Wheaton) finds solace and friendship in the company of Chris Chambers (River Phoenix), Teddy Duchamp (Corey Feldman), and Vern Tessio (Jerry O’Connell). The motivation behind their journey comes when Vern overhears his older brother, Billy, discussing the discovery of the body with a friend.

Fearful of implicating themselves in a car theft, Billy (Casey Siemaszko) keeps silent. Eager for recognition, Vern shares the secret with his friends, setting the stage for an unforgettable adventure in Stand by Me. The group faces various challenges during their quest, with local hoodlums complicating the boys’ mission.

A Coming-Of-Age Story

As the boys travel through the Oregon landscape, their bond deepens. Chris emerges as a pillar of support for Gordie, encouraging him to pursue his passion for writing despite familial disapproval. Stand by Me reaches its conclusion when the boys discover Ray Brower’s lifeless body. Traumatized and overwhelmed, Gordie questions the unfairness of life.

In the present day (1985), Gordie reflects on the divergent paths each friend has taken while acknowledging the enduring impact those relationships had on his formative years. Stand by Me ends with a bittersweet reflection on the fleeting nature of youth and the enduring power of childhood bonds that are difficult to replicate in adulthood.

An Instant Classic

Stand by Me was a box office success, earning over $52 million worldwide against a budget of approximately $8 million. While not a blockbuster, the film’s impact and longevity have contributed to its status as a classic. The film earned critical acclaim for its storytelling, strong performances, and nostalgic portrayal of childhood friendships.The movie earned an Academy Award nomination for Best Adapted Screenplay and two Golden Globe nominations – one for Best Drama Motion Picture and another for Best Director. Stand by Me is often hailed as one of the most influential cinematic works of the 1980s and is considered one of the greatest films ever made.

A Genre Best

Stand by Me left a lasting legacy as a quintessential coming-of-age film and is often cited in discussions about the genre’s best examples. Decades later, the film’s exploration of friendship and the challenges of adolescence resonate with audiences of various generations. The movie’s success also contributed to the careers of its young cast.

Stand By Me Is Streaming On Netflix

Stand by Me also reinforced Rob Reiner’s reputation as a director capable of capturing the essence of human relationships and emotions. River Phoenix’s performance as Chris Chambers was hailed by critics and helped establish him as a rising star. Unfortunately, Phoenix’s life was tragically cut short when he passed away in 1993 at the age of 23.