Stand By Me (Movie Review For Small Group Com)

A Summer To Remember

The movie Stand By Me is based upon a novel by Steven King. It doesn’t have the same eerie feel as some of his other books and is generally a more serious movie. It takes place in the small town of Castle Rock, Oregon. It is the middle of the summer in approximately the early 1960’s. The kids are bored and that is the setup for their adventure to go find a dead body in the woods.
The main role of Gordie LaChance is played by Wil Wheaton. He is having trouble in his life at this time because he just lost his brother and his parents are having a very difficult time dealing with it. Chris Chambers was played by River Phoenix. Chris is considered a loser because of his family and everybody thinks he will do nothing in life. Through it all, the group of kids looks up to Chris and he is admired by them. The role of Teddy Duchamp is played by Corey Feldman. Teddy has a difficult time in life largely because his father was very mean to him before getting thrown in an insane asylum. The lack of discipline shows in that Teddy has a serious problem staying in control. He is always going crazy and his behavior presents a problem more than once to the group. Vern Tessio is played by Jerry O’Connel. He is the short little fat kid that remains a constant pest throughout the movie. Together the for kids embark on a trip through the woods that will be a challenging adventure for them all. Over the course of the movie the group has problems with individual group members, they have to work as a team, and leadership roles emerge.
In any group, dealing with difficult group members is vital to the group’s success. Stand By Me has three different types of difficult group members that cause problems in their own way.
Vern is probably the most difficult member to deal with. He would be characterized as a blocker. He thwarts the progress of the group, opposes much of what the group attempts to accomplish (Rothwell 145). Throughout the movie he tries to get the group to do other things. Though he usually goes along with the group after some convincing, it definitely slows the group down. Right when they take off on the trip he begins to voice his opposition starting by complaining about why they are bringing the pistol. His character is further developed when he complains about having to walk the entire trip and says they should hitchhike. When they stop to get food and they flip a coin, they get all tails. Vern whines that it means they are all doomed and should go back. Vern also slows the group when he refuses to go into the woods away from the tracks towards the trail. He then plays the role of backseat driver (class notes) when they reach the swamp saying, “I told you we should have kept following the train tracks”. Vern hindered the development of the group. While they could have been devoting time to the task at hand, they had to spend time helping him with trivial things like dealing with him being scared when they are in the woods. While Vern slowed the group by challenging many of the group’s ideas, Teddy presented a much different challenge to the group.
Teddy is described in the beginning as being reckless and wild. He holds to that description right in the beginning with two crazy incidents. When they leave in the beginning and are walking on the train tracks, Teddy goes a little bit nuts and says he is going to dodge the train. It takes the entire group to pull him away from the train tracks before the train comes. Teddy also becomes difficult when the run away from the old man in the junkyard. When the old man calls his father “looney” Teddy flips out. He starts kicking and punching even though he’s on the other side of the fence. This remains a problem with the group because they have to spend time comforting him before they get back