6.5/10
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34 user 13 critic

The Boy Who Could Fly (1986)

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

Director:

Nick Castle

Writer:

Nick Castle
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ON DISC
3 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Just released from prison, Max Washington must decide which of his previous professions to return to: burglar or tap dancer.

Director: Nick Castle
Stars: Gregory Hines, Suzzanne Douglas, Sammy Davis Jr.
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Lucy Deakins ... Milly
Jay Underwood ... Eric
Bonnie Bedelia ... Charlene
Fred Savage ... Louis
Colleen Dewhurst ... Mrs. Sherman
Fred Gwynne ... Uncle Hugo
Mindy Cohn ... Geneva
Janet MacLachlan ... Mrs. D'Gregario
Jennifer Michas Jennifer Michas ... Mona
Michelle Bardeaux ... Erin
Aura Pithart Aura Pithart ... Colette
Cameron Bancroft ... Joe (as Cam Bancroft)
Jason Priestley ... Gary (as Jason Priestly)
Chris Arnold Chris Arnold ... Sonny
Sean Kelso Sean Kelso ... Bad Boy
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Storyline

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

Taglines:

Wish hard enough... love long enough... and anything's possible. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Fantasy | Romance

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

26 September 1986 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Chlopiec, który umial latac See more »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$7,177,431
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The video game Fred Savage is playing is the same video game played in "The Last Starfighter". See more »

Goofs

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 »

Quotes

[after Eric and Milly flew in front of the entire town, Eric flies away, never to be seen again]
Milly: [narrating] That night, I found out why Eric flew away. Our house was crawling with people who wanted to see Eric Gibb, the boy who could fly. There were scientists and doctors and TV reporters. When they couldn't find Eric, they did tests on me, because I flew with him. They did tests on Uncle Hugo, too, because he was a relative and had the same genes. Then they took everything out of his room and ...
[...]
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Alternate Versions

The Disney Channel version of this film that aired in the late 1980's had been edited. Some scenes had been edited down or taken out, and the bad language had been dubbed. Also at the end of the program the star Jay Underwood gave a special message to young viewers telling them not to try anything they saw him perform in the film. He explained that they had special wires attached to him to make it look as though he could fly. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Knots Landing: The Inside Man (1986) See more »

Soundtracks

Back of the Bus
Music by Bruce Broughton
Lyrics and vocals by Nick Castle
See more »

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User Reviews

A meaningful family oriented drama
4 November 2002 | by sorannoSee all my reviews

Back in the late 1980's, Jay Underwood was a teenaged boy who had a short lived starring career in films. He made his starring debut in this 1986 Lorimar release which could've been a major star making vehicle if its theatrical response was more profitable. Time has served it well and it now stands as a family favorite from the 1980's. Underwood portrays a boy who isolates himself from society after his parents die in a plane crash. He stays in his house all day long and pretends to be in a land where he can fly. Lucy Deakins portrays a teenaged girl who feels sorry for Underwood and tries to help him fit in. Somewhat sappy at times but otherwise genuinely touching. Film is also notable for serving as the debut performance of Fred Savage, the star of the TV series "The Wonder Years."


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