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A young boy is found wandering without any memory of who he is. A family takes him in and begin to look for clues to help him find his way home. In the meantime, they notice that the boy seems to have certain special abilities, not usually found in kids his age, or even fully-grown adults. Written by
Murray Chapman <email@example.com>
In response to whether acting is work or fun, Barret Oliver states in a 1985 "Star Log" interview: "I think it's fun, but it really is a job. In D.A.R.Y.L. (1985) there was a part where I had to freeze to death and they didn't even use it. It can get kind of frustrating. See more »
When Daryl gets cash out of the ATM, the baseball kids in the background get out of the car twice (at 26:17 and 26:24). See more »
'D.A.R.Y.L.' is an adorable little sci-fi children's film from the Eighties and will certainly conjure feelings of nostalgia in those who watched it as children. The film revolves around ten-year-old Daryl, who is found wandering alone in the wilderness and is fostered by childless couple Joyce and Andy Richardson. He quickly befriends their neighbours' son Turtle and goes from strength-to-strength in his new home. However, it soon becomes apparent that Daryl isn't quite normal. His intellect is vast, he has excellent sporting reflexes and acts in an oddly adult manner. Then, when two military scientists turn up at the Richardsons' home to retrieve him, it turns out Daryl is not a human child but a Data Analysing Robot Youth Lifeform, created in a science lab to serve the military. When the military orders that Daryl be destroyed, the fight to save him and return him to the family home where he was loved is on...
Barret Oliver plays the title character of Daryl, gives an effective performance and nicely depicts his character gradually changing from being odd and awkward to acting like a typical boy of ten. Mary Beth Hurt and Michael McKean, as Joyce and Andy, also give good depictions of foster parents desperate for a child, uncertain about the strange nature of Daryl yet coming to love him as if he were their own. Josef Sommer plays the scientist who begins to question the boundaries of what is considered human once he starts to know Daryl, the robot he created, properly. And Ron Frazier, as General Graycliffe who is intent on seeing Daryl destroyed, depicts his character in a suitably loathsome light!
Besides the nostalgia factor for those in their twenties and early thirties, this film will not only be enjoyable for children of today but, as we live in the computer age, brings up very relevant issues that they can consider such as what being a human means and why blood relations doesn't always matter when it comes to family. Daryl, for younger viewers, is the equivalent of Data from 'Star Trek: The Next Generation' so perhaps making this film a good choice for parents wishing to introduce their young kids to the sci-fi genre.
This is definitely an Eighties kids' classic but also one for all the family.
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