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Radio Flyer
Radio Flyer
Actors: Lorraine Bracco, John Heard, Adam Baldwin, Elijah Wood, Joseph Mazzello
Directors: David M. Evans, Richard Donner
Genres: Drama
PG-13     2004     1hr 54min

A moving story about two young brothers whose childhood world of monsters and secret potions is turned upside down when a very real monster?a volatile stepfather?enters their lives. Inspired by a local legend, they attempt...  more »


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Movie Details

Actors: Lorraine Bracco, John Heard, Adam Baldwin, Elijah Wood, Joseph Mazzello
Directors: David M. Evans, Richard Donner
Creators: David M. Evans, Dale De La Torre, Jennie Lew Tugend, Jim Van Wyck, Lauren Shuler Donner
Genres: Drama
Sub-Genres: Family Life
Studio: Sony Pictures
Format: DVD - Color,Widescreen - Closed-captioned,Dubbed,Subtitled
DVD Release Date: 10/12/2004
Original Release Date: 02/21/1992
Theatrical Release Date: 02/21/1992
Release Year: 2004
Run Time: 1hr 54min
Screens: Color,Widescreen
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 2
MPAA Rating: PG-13 (Parental Guidance Suggested)
Languages: English, French
Subtitles: French

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Movie Reviews

The secret to this movie
Brian M. Cooke | Colorado, USA | 10/23/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Glad to see that at least one other viewer figured out that there was only one boy: the weak younger brother is a figment of the older brother's imagination, created as a way of distancing himself emotionally from the physical abuse. Or, more accurately, the brothers are two aspects of the same person. The great thing about this movie is this hidden meaning ... watch this movie and look for the clues -- like when the mother tells the boys "don't forget your lunch" (instead of "lunches"). Other clues are less obvious and often have to do with coincidences -- I won't give them away. After the stepfather is removed there's no need for the younger brother; hence the ending that so many people thought was ridiculous. This movie is a real gem. It's unfortunate that its subtlety was lost on so many people."
A different view on the ending
(4 out of 5 stars)

"I have read many reviews on Radio Flyer, most concerned with the ambiguity of the ending. I saw the movie for the first time a few weeks ago. After watching it, I decided that it had, in fact, been a good movie. It was able to depict many aspects of child abuse, emotionally and physcially, along with the unstableness of the family. However, this alone does not even scratch the surface of the movie's depth. Like I said, after watching the movie, I had decided that it was good. However, if Mike's brother Bobby had flown off and never returned, then where did the turtle in the end come from? The same turtle that they boys had found when they were little, and the same turtle that Bobby took with him on his flight. After this perplexing detail was brought to my attention, I realized that Mike (tom hanks) at the beginning of the movie had said "History is all in the mind of the teller; truth is in the teller". The story recounted by Mike being told to his children was his version of what actually happened to him, and him alone, as a child. After considering this, other facts seemed to make sense. Why had only Bobby been abused? Why hadn't Bobby's flyer ever seem to fail? and for that matter, why hadn't Bobby ever come back? Because Bobby had never existed. In an attempt to escape his own childhood dilemas and tragedies, Mike created an outlet to disguard all his pain. The new idea of this ending made the movie so much better than I had originally perceived it. I'd definitely recommend it, even if it's just to get your own view on the ending :)."
Radio Flyer
reaven | MN | 02/06/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)

"A reviewer, who decided to remain nameless, reviewed this movie giving it one star. Here's why I disagree. First off, the stepfather wasn't 'faceless'; with his face not being shown, he was meant to represent ANY abusive, alcoholic father or stepfather. Secondly, I was abused by my alcoholic father between the ages of 1 and 6, and the way these children acted was exactly how it is. Let's face it: when you're that young, you don't exactly know how to 'find the help you need', so you feel you don't have a choice but to 'retreat into your own world'. It may not have been healthy or the right thing to do, but that's just how it is most of the time. This film portrayed almost perfectly what it's like to be that young and to be abused, and Joseph Mazzello and Elijah Wood did such a good job playing those boys that I found myself crying through most of the movie, because that's how it is.
My congratulations to all involved with this film. You managed to capture innocence and how it's lost even when, as abused children, we try dearly to hold on to it.
Oh. Also. The damn Flyer is a metaphor for all of you who thought the end was stupid!"
A deserving movie-lovers movie
Kevin G. Smotherman | USA | 01/17/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I have read many reviews of this movie, and not just a few here on Amazon. I'm constantly amazed at the negative comments from people who think that this movie recommends a way to deal with child abuse, or that it takes a stand on the subject. It does not. Child abuse is bad, an evil in this world. This movie shows this from the viewpoint of the two boys. As children, they can little understand why this evil has befallen the younger brother, they only know that their Mother was unhappy, and that the new man in her life has made her happy. Loving their mother and wanting her to be happy, they make the best of the situation, and try to get by, to escape into the things boys will escape into. This is not a statement on child abuse: it's a statement about the will to survive, and that of adventure, of these two boys. To view this movie in any other light is in injustice. The acting of the boys is simply tremendous. Sure, the step-father is seldom seen and when seen, from low-angles and stereotyped. But he is seen as the boys see him: a giant, and seldom. This is, after all, their story."