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The Boy Who Could Fly (1986)

PG  |   |  Drama, Fantasy  |  15 August 1986 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.4/10 from 4,171 users  
Reviews: 33 user | 15 critic

An autistic boy who dreams of flying touches everyone he meets, including a new family who has moved in after their father dies.



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Mrs. Sherman
Mrs. D'Gregario
Jennifer Michas ...
Aura Pithart ...
Joe (as Cam Bancroft)
Gary (as Jason Priestly)
Chris Arnold ...
Sean Kelso ...
Bad Boy


Charlene Michaelson, her two children - teen-aged Amelia 'Milly' Michaelson and precocious adolescent Louis Michaelson - and their dog Max move into a new house in a new neighborhood after the passing of Charlene's husband/the kids' father, Donald Michaelson. Beyond life without Donald, they are all nervous about starting a new life, which, for Charlene, means getting back into the workforce after thirteen years. Milly quickly settles into the neighborhood if only because she becomes fascinated with their next door neighbor, teen-aged Eric Gibb, who authorities believe is autistic. Orphaned Eric has never spoken a word, and without having been told about the incident, began to think he could fly at the exact moment his parents died in a plane crash. Many believe Eric's belief is because he felt he could thus save his parents. Eric's guardian is his dipsomaniac Uncle Hugo Gibb. Milly's high school teacher, Mrs. Carolyn Sherman, who used to be a special needs teacher, looks after Eric ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Between a silent boy and a beautiful girl lies an amazing secret. See more »


Drama | Fantasy


PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

15 August 1986 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Chlopiec który umial latac  »

Box Office


$7,177,431 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Fred Savages' film debut. See more »


Cables holding Eric can visibly be seen as he and Millie are falling off the roof of the school before they crash into Millie's mom. See more »


Psychiatrist: Tell me about your accident.
Milly: I was on a bridge, reaching for a flower and I fell over the railing.
Psychiatrist: You told your mother something about a boy who rescued you.
Milly: What are you, a shrink?
Psychiatrist: Yes.
Milly: Great, now I'm wacko.
Psychiatrist: It's important that you tell me everything you remember about this. Let me be the judge of whether you're wacko or not, okay?
Milly: Yeah, okay. I fell fifty feet without a mark on me, except for this.
[points to the small bandage on her forehead]
Milly: And I got this when I hit the railing. I didn't ...
See more »


Referenced in Psych: Juliet Takes a Luvvah (2013) See more »


Written and Performed by Stephen Bishop
See more »

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User Reviews

Flying Dangerously Close To The Ground
25 May 2004 | by (Denver, CO) – See all my reviews

A classic 80's film that nears cheesy pap but still avoids and retains heart through excellent pacing, dialog and acting. It might not hold up as well as when I first saw it because the family film concept had not yet been run into the ground yet for me.

Fred Savage does a good job in an interesting subplot that involves a bully and funerals for GI JOE soldiers. Fond memories of his confrontation with the neighborhood bullies still color my memory of this film.

A fun warm family fantasy that seems to be in short supply as of late due to it being nearly impossible to make something realistic because of the amount of film cliche in the modern world. Still, the film is very watchable and fun. 7/10

6 of 8 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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