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Charlie and the Talking Buzzard (1979)

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Cast

Cast overview:
Ron Landry ...
Buzzard (voice)
Christopher Hanks ...
Charlie
Bruce Kimball ...
Old Buzzard (as Bruce Kemp)
Mike Hanks ...
Tucker
John Davenport ...
Hutch
Roger Cain ...
Tom
Jack Bones ...
Sheriff
Duncan McLeod ...
Father
Carrie Thie ...
Mother
John Dennis ...
Mayor
...
Pete (as Christopher Penn)
...
Joe
Helen Langvin ...
Helen
Dorothy Wall ...
Dorothy
Robbie Robinson ...
Mailman
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I saw there were no comments so I bought the video...
3 December 2004 | by (Northbrook, IL, USA) – See all my reviews

...and I sure hope someone out there is appreciative. This is one slow movie that is rife with continuity errors and often throws logic to the wind. Charlie is a little boy who just moved to a tiny town. Just how tiny is it? Glad you asked! It's so tiny that only one boy actually owns a football. Ah...but I'm getting ahead of myself.

There is a constant, and truly annoying, voice-over done by a buzzard in this movie. Whether the bird actually talks is open to interpretation. At the start of the film, the buzzard carries on a conversation with a gentleman working on a fence. However, nobody ever talks to the bird for the rest of the movie and they show no indication of hearing the bird talk. Go figure.

OK...back to the football. Charlie sees some kids playing football but they won't let him play. Long story short, they only have one football and it's all patched up and keeps deflating. The thing finally busts for good but Charlie has an ingenious plan. He orders one through the mail (because evidently you can't buy one in this town!) and it quickly arrives. He shows it off in front of the other boys and they suddenly want to be his buddy. So how does this progress the plot? Hmm...it really doesn't but there's not much going on in this film and I have space to fill here.

The plot, so much as it is, consists of the following convoluted nonsense. The mayor of the town is stealing fireworks from the town's fireworks factory (which is the town's main employer). His idea is that the factory will go out of business and most of the people will move out of town. He will then buy their land for dirt cheap and hang on to it until...the freeway is built through town! Then, of course, he will reopen the defunct factory and sell the houses to his new employees for a tidy profit. I guess this is what passed for a "plot" in '70s kids movies.

As I'm sure you can surmise, it is up to Charlie, his buzzard guardian and a few friends to help bring this nefarious scheme to a halt. Look for a much younger (and skinnier) Chris Penn in his first film role. Also be sure to look out for countless "goofs" which occur in the movie. If you drink a beer (21 year olds and over please) for each mistake you spot then you just might be lucky enough to pass out before "Charlie and the Talking Buzzard" reaches its not-so-thrilling conclusion. 2/10


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