Tonight at the Mink, Rocks Off presents Rob Reiner's 1986 coming-of-age classicStand By Me
, complete with free hot dogs from hot indie restaurant darlings Ray's Franks. Adapted from Stephen King'sDifferent Seasons
novella "The Body," the film traces the journey of four friends searching for the dead body of another kid who was hit by a train. The boys initially go on the trek in the hopes that finding the corpse will make them local heroes, but along the way they encounter things that make them not heroes but in a sense, young men. It's a guy's movie, and men of all ages who watch it see parts of themselves in each one the characters. The movie is also notable for some of the finest acting by the film's young cast. A young River Phoenix showed an innate strength in his role as Chris that only hinted at what he would accomplish later down the line in his sadly short life. Even Corey Feldman, yeah one of the Corey's, was a tiny powerhouse as the abused Teddy. Will Wheaton and a portly Jerry O'Connell round out the core cast as Gordie and Vern, with Kiefer Sutherland making a characteristically slimy appearance as an imposing and ruthless local gang member.
Aside from the tale of the boys searching for the body of the deceased Ray Brower, its Gordie's campfire tale of "Lardass" and his sadistic vomitous revenge on the citizens of his hometown that gets the most yucks. In a film full of teen angst and malaise, it's an island of purple puke that would make Troma's Lloyd Kaufman proud.
The wistful R&B track "Stand By Me" by Ben E. King saw a marked resurgence when it was included on the film's soundtrack - reaching No. 9 on theBillboard
Hot 100 a full quarter-century after its original release - along with other '50s-era cuts from The Coasters, The Chordettes and Buddy Holly. While King's version is the definitive version of the song, plenty of artists have covered it, including John Lennon for his ownRock And Roll
covers album and even Mickey Gilley for the
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soundtrack six years before the release ofStand By Me