Gunther Wheeler, fourteen, a tough guy from New York City, moves to a small town called Pleasant Valley. Gunther isn't making very many friends in his new town. Until he meets Allison ... See full summary »
Morris "Mud" Himmel has a problem. His parents desperately want to send him away to summer camp. He hates going to summer camp, and would do anything to get out of it. Talking to his ... See full summary »
High-schooler Grover Beindorf and his younger sister Stacy decide that their parents, Janet and Ned, are acting childishly when they decide to divorce after 18 years of marriage, so they lock them up in the basement until they'll sort out their problems. Their schoolfriends also decide to do the same with their parents to solve their respective problems.Written by
As the closing credits roll, we are shown the various family members in Hawaii hula-dancing, often in native garb or something close to it, singly and in various combinations. The footage ends with Chief Rocco (Ray Walston) stumbling out of some bushes with a set of night-vision goggles with which he tries to observe the rest of the cast (in full daylight). See more »
This comedy, about a teenager and his younger sister who lock their parents in the basement until they work out their marital problems, is not as bad as it sounds. We wind up with a bunch of kids upstairs who know how to relate to one another but gradually have to work out how to keep practical things running, and a bunch of adults downstairs who are just the opposite. In truth, neither side does very well, but at least this is not the tired condescension of the kids screwing up and needing to be rescued by the adults: both groups are portrayed with a mix of severity and sympathy. Throw in a meddling retired chief of police across the street, and make him Ray Walston whom I think everybody loved most in "Picket Fences," and you have a film that is very entertaining, and also carries across some deeper meaning about what contributions young people and older ones can make to each other's ongoing development. Kyle Howard was 18 trying to play 14, which took a good deal of suspension of disbelief, but that miscasting seems to be an obsession Hollywood just can't seem to grow out of.
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