Stand by Me (film)

1986 film directed by Rob Reiner
(Redirected from Stand by Me)

Stand by Me is a 1986 film about a writer's recounting of a boyhood journey to find the dead body of a missing local boy.

Directed by Rob Reiner and written by Raynold Gideon and Bruce A. Evans, based on the novella The Body by Stephen King.
For some, it's the last real taste of innocence, and the first real taste of life. But for everyone, it's the time that memories are made of.

The Writer

  • [voiceover] I was 12 going on 13 first time I saw a dead human being. It happened in the summer of 1959. A long time ago. But only if you measure in terms of years. I was living in a small town in Oregon called Castle Rock. There were only 1281 people, but to me it was the whole world.
  • [voiceover] As time went on we saw less and less of Teddy and Vern until eventually they became just two more faces in the halls. That happens sometimes. Friends come in and out of your life like busboys in a restaurant.
  • [typing, about Chris] Although I haven't seen him in more than ten years I know I'll miss him forever. I never had any friends later on like the ones I had when I was twelve. Jesus, does anybody?


[The four boys begin following the tracks]
Vern: Well, what do we need a pistol for anyway?
Chris: It's spooky sleeping out at night in the woods. We might even see a bear.
Gordie: Or a garbage can.
Vern: I brought a comb.
Chris: What do we need a comb for?
Vern: Well, if we get on TV, we wanna look good, don't we?
Gordie: That's a lot of thinking, Vern.
Vern: Thanks.
Teddy: Two for flinching. [punches Vern in the arm twice]
Vern: Ow.
[The boys stop and stare into the distance]
Teddy: How far do you think it's gonna be?
Chris: [exhales] If we follow the tracks all the way into Harlow, it'd be about 20 miles. Sound about right to you, Gordie?
Gordie: Yeah. Yeah, it might even be 30.
Vern: Gee, maybe we should just hitchhike.
Teddy: No way, that sucks.
Vern: Why not? We could go out to Route 7 to the Shiloh Church, then down the Back Harlow Road. We'll be there by sundown.
Teddy: That's pussy.
Vern: Hey, it's a long ways.
Teddy: Did your mother ever have any kids that lived?
Vern: What do you mean?
Teddy: Jesus.

Vern: Hey, I'm kinda hungry. Who's got the food?
Teddy: Oh, shit! Did anybody bring anything?
Chris: Not me. Gordie? [Gordie shakes his head]
Teddy: Oh, well, this is great! What are we supposed to do, eat our feet?
Chris: You mean, you didn't bring anything either?!
Teddy: Shit, this wasn't my idea, it was Vern's idea! [to Vern] Why didn't you bring something?!
Vern: What am I supposed to do, think of everything?! I brought the comb!
Teddy: Oh, great, you brought the comb! What do you need a comb for?! You don't even have any hair!
Vern: I brought it for you guys...
Gordie: HEY, HEY, HEY, HEY, HEY! Let's see how much money we got. [the boys sit down to count their money] Okay, I got $1.02. [Chris and Teddy hand Gordie their money] 68 cents from Chris. 60 cents from Teddy. [Vern hands Gordie his money; he looks at Vern in disbelief] Seven cents, Vern?
Vern: I haven't found my pennies yet.
Gordie: Well, 2.37's not bad. Quidaciolu's is at the end of that little road that goes by the junkyard. I think we can get some stuff there.

Gordie: Hey, Vern, looks like your mom's been out driving again.
Vern: That's so funny, I forgot to laugh.
Teddy: Stand back, men! Paratroops, over the side! [the boys toss their bags over the fence, then begin scaling it]
The Writer: [voiceover] "No trespassing" was enforced by Milo Pressman, the junkman, and his dog, Chopper, the most feared and least seen dog in Castle Rock. Legend had it that Milo had trained Chopper, not just to sic, but to sic specific parts of the human anatomy. Thus, a kid, who had illegally scaled the junkyard fence, might hear the dread cry, "Chopper, sic balls." But right now, neither the dread, Chopper, nor Milo was anywhere in sight.

Teddy: Have you guys been watching The Mickey Mouse Club lately? I think Annette's tits are getting bigger.
Gordie: Yeah, I've been noticing lately that the "A"and the "E" are starting to bend around the sides.
Vern: Annette's tits are great.
Chris and Teddy: Yeah.
Vern: This is a really good time.
Chris: The most.
Teddy: A blast.
The Writer: [voiceover] Vern didn't just mean being off limits inside the junkyard, or fudging on our folks, or going on a hike up the railroad tracks to Harlow. He meant those things, but it seems to me now it was more and that we all knew it. Everything was there and around us. We knew exactly who we were and exactly where we were going. It was grand.
[Teddy spits water at Vern; Gordie and Chris laugh]
Vern: Great! Spit at the fat kid. Real good. What time is it, Gordie?
Gordie: Um... [checks his watch] It's 1:15.
Vern: We better go get the food. Junkyard opens at 3:00. Chopper will be here.
Chris: Ooh, sic balls.
Teddy: [to Vern] You go. You can pick us up on the way back.
Vern: I'm not going alone. We should all go.
Teddy: I'm stayin' right here.
Gordie: Yeah, man, I'm not goin'. I'm not goin' all the way out there.
Chris: Girls, girls, girls, cool it. We'll flip for it.
Gordie: Okay, odd man goes?
Teddy: That's you, Gordie, odd as a cod.
Gordie: [to Chris] Flip or eat lead.
[The four boys flip their coins, and all have landed tails up]
Vern: Four tails! Oh, Jesus, man, that's a goocher.
Chris: Oh, come on, Vern. That doesn't mean anything. Let's go again.
Vern: No, man, a goocher. That's really bad. Remember when Clint Bracken and those guys got wiped out on Weed Hill in Durham? Billy told me they was flippin' for beers, and they came up with a goocher before they got into the car. And bang! They all got totaled! I don't like this, man, sincerely.
Teddy: Vern-o, nobody believes that crap about moons and goochers. It's baby stuff! Now come on, flip again. [to Vern] You gonna flip, or not?
[They flip their coins again, and this time all show tails except for Gordie]
Teddy: You lose, Gordie! [cackles] Gordie loses! Oh, Gordie just screwed the pooch! [laughs]
Gordie: Does the word "retarded" mean anything to you?
Teddy: Gordie, go and get the provisions, you morphadite!
Gordie: Don't call me any of your mother's pet names.
[Gordie gets up to leave]
Teddy: What a wet end you are, Lachance!
Gordie: Shut up!
Teddy: I don't shut up.
Vern, Chris, and Teddy: I grow up, and when I look at you, I throw up! [They point at each other's open mouths making gagging sounds]
Gordie: And then your mother goes around the corner and she licks it up.
Vern, Chris, and Teddy: Ooh!
The Writer: [voiceover] Finding new and, preferably, disgusting ways to degrade a friend's mother was always held in high regard.

Milo: HEY! Hey, you kid! What are you doing there?! Come over here! [Gordie starts running] You! You come back here! COME BACK HERE, GODDAMMIT! I'LL SIC MY DOG ON YOU!
Vern, Chris, and Teddy: RUN, GORDIE, RUN! RUN, GORDIE!
Milo: Chopper! Sic him! Sic him, boy!
The Writer: [voiceover] Now he said, "Sic him, boy." But what I heard was, "Chopper, sic balls."
[Gordie keeps running and starts screaming as Chopper goes after him. Gordie scales the fence and Chopper tries to jump after him. The boys are surprised by Chopper's appearance]
Gordie: That's Chopper?
The Writer: [voiceover] Chopper was my first lesson in the vast difference between myth and reality.
Teddy: Come on, Choppy! Kiss my ass, Choppy, kiss my ass! Come on! [Chopper starts biting Teddy's shirt] Bite shit!
Gordie: Come on, Choppy! Sic balls, Choppy!
Milo: Hey, you kids! STOP TEASING THAT DOG! YA HEAR ME?! STOP TEASING HIM! [to Teddy] Sonny, I'm gonna beat your ass, teasing my dog like that!
Teddy: Yeah? I'd like to see you try to climb over this fence and get me, fat-ass!
Milo: Don't you call me that, you little tin weasel. Peckerwood loony's son.
Teddy: What did you call me?
Milo: I know who you are. You're Teddy Duchamp. Your dad's a loony. A loony up in the nuthouse at Togus. He took your ear and he put it to a stove and he burnt it off.
Teddy: My father stormed the beach at Normandy.
Milo: He's crazier than a shithouse rat. No wonder you're acting the way you are, with a loony for a father!
Teddy: You call my dad a loony again, and I'll kill you.
Milo: [mockingly] Loony, loony, loony.
Teddy: [yells and jumps on the fence] I'M GONNA RIP YOUR HEAD OFF AND SHIT DOWN YOUR NECK!!!! I'M GONNA KILL HIM!!!! [the other boys restrain him]
Milo: You come on and try it, you little slimy bastard!
Chris: He wants you to go over there so he can beat the piss out of you and then take you to the cops!
Milo: You watch your mouth, smart guy! Let him do his own fighting!
Gordie: Sure, you only outweigh him by 500 pounds, fat-ass!
Milo: I know your name. You're Lachance. I know all you guys. And all your fathers are gonna get a call from me, except for the loony up in Togus.
Teddy: [lunges again, but the others restrain him again] I'M GONNA KILL YOU!!!!
Milo: You little foul-mouthed whoremaster!
Teddy: YOU SON OF A BITCH! I'LL KILL YOU! [the boys begin walking away]
Milo: Come back here! Come back here, you hear me?!
Teddy: Nobody ranks out my old man!
Milo: Come back here!
Teddy: My father stormed the beach at Normandy!
Milo: I said come back here!
Milo: Come back here!

Teddy: I'm sorry if I'm spoiling everybody's good time.
Chris: It's okay, man.
Gordie: Maybe it shouldn't be a good time.
Chris: You saying you wanna go back?
Gordie: No. We're going to see a dead kid; maybe it shouldn't be a party.

Gordie: Do you think I'm weird?
Chris: Definitely.
Gordie: No man, seriously. Am I weird?
Chris: Yeah, but so what? Everybody's weird.

Vern: You think Mighty Mouse could beat up Superman?
Teddy: What are you, cracked?
Vern: Why not? I saw the other day, he was carrying five elephants in one hand.
Teddy: Boy, you don't know nothing. Mighty Mouse is a cartoon. Superman is a real guy. No way a cartoon could beat up a real guy.
Vern: Yeah, maybe you're right. It'd be a good fight, though.
Teddy: Jesus.

Chris: I mean, you could be a real writer someday, Gordie.
Gordie: Fuck writing! I don't wanna be a writer. It's stupid. It's a stupid wasted time!
Chris: That's your dad talking.
Gordie: Bullshit!
Chris: Bulltrue! I know how your dad feels about you, he doesn't give a shit about you. Denny was the one he cared about, and don't try to tell me different! You're just a kid, Gordie...
Gordie: Oh, gee, thanks, Dad!
Chris: I wish the hell I was your dad. You wouldn't be going around talking about taking these stupid shop courses if I was. It's like God gave you something man. All those stories that you can make up, and He said, "This is what we got for you kid, try not to lose it." But kids lose everything unless there's someone there to look out for them. And if your parents are too fucked up to do it, then maybe I should.
Vern: Come on, you guys, let's get moving!
Teddy: Yeah, by the time we get there, the kid won't even be dead anymore.

[The boys have come across a train trestle, and are contemplating crossing it.]
Vern: Any of you guys know when the next train is due?
Chris: We could go down to the Route 136 bridge.
Teddy: What are you, crazy? That's five miles down the river! You walk five miles down the river, you gotta walk five miles back. That could take 'til dark. We go across here, we could get to the same place in ten minutes.
Vern: Yeah, but if a train comes, there's nowheres to go.
Teddy: Hell, there isn't. You just jump.
Chris: Teddy, it's 100 feet.
Vern: Yeah, Teddy.
Teddy: Look, you guys can go around if you want. I'm crossing here. And while you guys are dragging your candy asses halfway across the state and back, I'll be waiting for you on the other side, relaxing with my thoughts.
Gordie: Do you use your left hand or your right hand for that?
Teddy: You wish.
[They start crossing the bridge; Gordie feels the tracks for any vibrations given off by trains; Vern cautiously crawls along the tracks with Gordie walking behind him and the comb falls out of his shirt pocket into the river]
Vern: [disappointedly] I lost the comb.
Gordie: Forget it, Vern. [they continue walking along; Gordie suddenly hears a distant sound and looks back the way they came; he then feels the tracks again, and as he does so, he hears a chugging sound; he looks back in the opposite direction again and sees black smoke coming up from the trees; realizing a train is coming, Gordie stands up to alert the others] TRAAAAIN!!! [Chris and Teddy turn around just in time to see a train coming around the corner from the opposite end of the bridge]
Vern: Oh, shit! [crawls as fast as he can]
Chris: [to Teddy] Move it, man! Go on, move it!
Gordie: [furious with desperation] Get up, Vern! Damn it! GET UP! [gets Vern on his feet as the train starts to come onto the bridge] MOVE IT! [Vern immediately cowers] Shit, Vern! Get up! Come on, man!
Vern: I don't wanna! We're gonna fall!
Gordie: [looking back at the oncoming train] WE'RE GONNA DIE, DAMN IT! GET UP!!!! [Vern gets to his feet] GO! GO! [the two run as fast as they can]
Chris: Go, man! Go!
Vern: I can't, Gordie!
Gordie: Go! [the train gets closer to Gordie and Vern]
Chris: Run! Run! [he and Teddy get off to the side of the tracks as the train gets just inches away from Gordie and Vern] Run. Run, man! Move your ass, man!
Gordie: Move it! Move it! Go, Vern! Come on, man! Vern! Go!
Chris and Teddy: Run! Goddamn it! Run!
Gordie: RUN, VERN! [Chris and Teddy watch with horror; Gordie, thinking quickly, grabs Vern, and the two jump off the side of the bridge just as the train is about to hit them; as the train passes, Chris and Teddy run over to the end of the bridge and see Gordie and Vern disheveled but unharmed]
Chris: Hey, at least now we know when the next train was due.

Gordie: Mickey's a mouse, Donald's a duck, Pluto's a dog. What's Goofy?
Teddy: He's a dog, he's definitely a dog...
Chris: He can't be a dog, he wears a hat and drives a car...
Vern: Yeah, that is weird. What the hell is Goofy?

Gordie: Maybe you could come into the college courses with me.
Chris: Yeah right, that'll be the day.
Gordie: Why not? You're smart enough.
Chris: They won't let me.
Gordie: What do you mean?
Chris: It's what everyone thinks of my family in this town. It's what they think of me. I'm just one of those low-life Chambers kids.
Gordie: That's not true.
Chris: Oh wait, it is. No one even asked me if I took the milk money that time. I just got a three day vacation.
Gordie: Did you take it?
Chris: Yeah, I took it! I mean, you knew I took it. Teddy knew I took it. Everyone knew I took it. Even Vern knew it, I think. But maybe I was sorry and I tried to give it back.
Gordie: You tried to give it back?
Chris: Maybe. Just maybe. And maybe I took it to Old Lady Simmons and told her, and the money was all there. But I still got a three day vacation because it never showed up. And maybe the next week, Old Lady Simmons had this new suit on when she came to school.
Gordie: Yeah, yeah! It was brown and it had dots on it.
Chris: Yeah. So let's just say that I stole the milk money, but Old Lady Simmons stole it back from me. Just say that I told this story. Me, Chris Chambers. Kid brother to Eyeball Chambers. Do you think that anyone would've believed it?
Gordie: No.
Chris: And do you think that that bitch would have dared try something like that if it had been one of those douchebags from up on the view, if they had taken the money?
Gordie: No way!
Chris: Hell no! But with me?... I'm sure she had her eye on that skirt for a long time. Anyway, she saw her chance, and she took it. I was the stupid one for even trying to give it back. [begins to cry] I just never thought a teacher... Oh, who gives a fuck anyway? I just wish... that I could go some place... where nobody knows me. I guess I'm just a pussy, huh?
Gordie: [comforting] No way. No way.

Vern: [looking at a pond in their way] Told you we should've stuck to the tracks.
Teddy: Is it me, or are you the world's biggest pussy?
Vern: I suppose this is fun for you.
Teddy: No... but this is. [reaches up and dunks Vern while laughing crazily] You want some more?!
Vern: Aah! Stop that! Come on!
Chris: Come on Teddy, act your age!
Teddy: This is my age. I'm in the prime of my youth and I'll only be young once!
Chris: Yeah, but you're gonna be stupid for the rest of your life.
Vern: [grinning] All right, get him!
Teddy: All right, Chambers, you just signed your own death warrant. You die, Chambers! [Teddy and Vern both lunge at Chris, dunking him and laughing loudly, as Gordie disgustedly wades off] Get him! Get Vern! Vern's gonna die!
Vern: Teddy, you're gonna die!

Chris: Gordie?
Gordie: [to himself] Why did you have to die?
Vern: What's the matter with Gordie?
Chris: Nothing. Why don't you guys just go for some branches, okay?
[Chris sits beside Gordie.]
Gordie: Why did he have to die, Chris? Why did Denny have to die? Why?
Chris: I don't know.
Gordie: It should have been me.
Chris: Don't say that.
Gordie: It should have been me.
Chris: Don't say that, man.
Gordie: I'm no good. My dad said it, I'm no good.
Chris: He doesn't know you.
Gordie: He hates me.
Chris: He doesn't hate you.
Gordie: [begins to cry] He hates me.
Chris: No, he just doesn't know you.
Gordie: He hates me. My dad hates me. He hates me oh oh God. [cries]
Chris: You're gonna be a great writer someday, Gordie. You might even write about us guys if you ever get hard up for material.
Gordie: Guess I'd have to be really hard up, huh?
Chris: Yeah.

Gordie: [after shooting a gun into the air] You're not taking him. An' nobody is taking him.
Ace: Come on kid, just give me the gun before you take your foot off. You ain't got the sack to shoot a woodchuck.
Gordie: Move Ace. I'll kill you I swear to God.
Ace: Come on, Lachance, gimme the gun. You must have at least some of your brother's good sense.
Gordie: [quietly, aiming the gun at Ace] Suck my fat one, you cheap dime-store hood.
Ace: [mocking] What are you gonna do, shoot us all?
Gordie: No, Ace. Just you.

Chris: I'm never gonna get out of this town am I, Gordie?
Gordie: You can do anything you want, man.
Chris: Yeah, sure. Give me some skin.
Gordie: I'll see ya.
Chris: Not if I see you first.
The Writer: [voiceover] Chris did get out. He enrolled in the college courses with me, and although it was hard, he gutted it out like he always did. He went on to college and eventually became a lawyer. Last week, he entered a fast food restaurant. Just ahead of him, two men got into an argument; one of them pulled a knife. Chris, who'd always made the best peace, tried to break it up. He was stabbed in the throat. He died almost instantly.

About Stand by Me (film)

  • I thought it was true to the book, and because it had the emotional gradient of the story. It was moving. I think I scared the shit out of Rob Reiner. He showed it to me in the screening room at the Beverly Hills Hotel. I was out there for something else, and he said, "Can I come over and show you this movie?" And you have to remember that the movie was made on a shoestring. It was supposed to be one of those things that opened in six theaters and then maybe disappeared. And instead it went viral. When the movie was over, I hugged him because I was moved to tears, because it was so autobiographical.



  Encyclopedic article on Stand by Me (film) on Wikipedia

Adaptations of works by Stephen King
  Films     The Shining (1980) · Cujo (1983) · The Dead Zone (1983) · Christine (1983) · Cat's Eye (1985) · Silver Bullet (1985) · Stand by Me (1986) · The Running Man (1987) · Tales from the
  Darkside: The Movie
(1990) · Graveyard Shift (1990) · Misery (1990) · The Lawnmower Man (1992) · Sleepwalkers (1992) · The Dark Half (1993) · Needful Things (1993) · The
  Shawshank Redemption
(1994) · Dolores Claiborne (1995) · Thinner (1996) · The Night Flier (1997) · Apt Pupil (1998) · The Green Mile (1999) · Hearts in Atlantis (2001) · Dreamcatcher 
  (2003) · Secret Window (2004) · Riding the Bullet (2004) · 1408 (2007) · The Mist (2007) · Dolan's Cadillac (2009) · A Good Marriage (2014) · Cell (2016) · It (2017) · It Chapter Two (2019)  
  Carrie     Carrie (1976) · The Rage: Carrie 2 (1999) · Carrie (2002) · Carrie (2013)  
  Creepshow     Creepshow (1982) · Creepshow 2 (1987) · Creepshow 3 (2006)  
  Children of the Corn     Children of the Corn (1984) · The Final Sacrifice (1993) · Urban Harvest (1995) · The Gathering (1996) · Fields of Terror (1998) · Isaac's Return (1999) ·
  Revelation (2001) · Children of the Corn (2009) · Genesis (2011)  
  Firestarter     Firestarter (1984) · Rekindled (2002)  
  Trucks     Maximum Overdrive (1986) · Trucks (1997)  
  Pet Sematary     Pet Sematary (1989) · Pet Sematary Two (1992) · Pet Sematary (2019)  
  The Mangler     The Mangler (1995) · The Mangler 2 (2001) · *The Mangler Reborn (2005)  
  Television     Episodes     "Gramma" (1986) · "Sorry, Right Number" (1987) · "The Revelations of Becka Paulson" (1997)  
  Series     Golden Years (1991) · The Dead Zone (2002–07) · Kingdom Hospital (2004) · Haven (2010–present) · Under the Dome (2013–15) · 11.22.63 (2016)  
  Films or miniseries     It (1990) · The Tommyknockers (1993) · The Stand (1994) · The Langoliers (1995) · The Shining (1997) · Quicksilver Highway (1997) · Storm of the Century
  (1999) · Stephen King's Desperation (2006) · Nightmares & Dreamscapes: From the Stories of Stephen King (2006) · Bag of Bones (2011) · Big Driver (2014)  
  Salem's Lot     Salem's Lot (1979) · A Return to Salem's Lot (1987) · Salem's Lot (2004)  
  Sometimes They Come Back     Sometimes They Come Back (1991) · Sometimes They Come Back... Again (1996) · Sometimes They Come Back... for More
  Rose Red     Rose Red (2002) · The Diary of Ellen Rimbauer (2003)  
  See also     {{Stephen King}}