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Radio Flyer

Radio Flyer
Radio Flyer
Radio Flyer
  • PG-13
  • 1h 54m
  • 1992
Common Sense Media Iconage 13+
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Lorraine Bracco, John Heard and Oscar®- winner Ben Johnson (Best Supporting Actor, The Last Picture Show) star in this moving story of a family torn apart by violence - and healed by imagination. Elijah Wood and Joseph Mazzello co-star as Bracco's two young sons, devoted brothers who escape their chaotic family life with dreams of flying. Inspired by a local legend, they attempt to build a working airplane. And in the process of transforming their ordinary red wagon into a fantastical flying machine, they transform their own lives into an extraordinary adventure.
© 1992 Columbia Pictures Industries, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Rotten Tomatoes® Score

Critics Consensus: Overlaying its whimsical concept onto a gritty story of domestic abuse, Radio Flyer is a family film that is too harrowing for children and too saccharine for their parents.
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Common Sense Media

Common Sense Media Iconage 13+
Common Sense Says
Child abuse, alcoholism in coming-of-age tearjerker.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Radio Flyer is a 1992 coming-of-age fantasy-drama. To illustrate the importance of keeping promises, the narrator (Tom Hanks) tells his kids of his upbringing, and specifically a time when his younger brother was the victim of physical abuse at the hands of an alcoholic stepfather. If the beatings themselves aren't shown -- although one early scene shows the stepfather slapping the boy hard during a fishing trip -- the bruises are shown. The boy begs his older brother to keep the abuse a secret. The mother is too busy trying to make a living as a diner waitress to know what's happening until the situation becomes so bad that the stepfather is sent to jail. When he's released, he makes a tear-filled apology to the mother, begging her to take him back. Their dog attacks the stepfather and is later shown in the alley behind their house bloodied and left for dead by the stepfather. The kids are also bullied by tweens in the neighborhood. The older brother kicks one of the bullies in the crotch. The bullies later rough up the older brother under the guise of football. Occasional profanity including "s--t" and the beginning of the word "f--k." Potty humor involving dog flatulence.

A Lot or A Little?

The parents’ guide to what’s in this movie.
Positive Messages
Positive Role Models
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
More on Common Sense Media

Additional Info

  • Genre:Drama, Family
  • Release Date:February 21, 1992
  • Languages:English
  • Captions:English
  • Audio Format:
  • Screen Pass Eligible:Yes
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