The Heavenly Kid : HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager?

HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager?

ok first off. I've loved this movie since I was 7 years old. I'm 25 now, just watched it and still love it.

With that being said.....
HELP ME ON THIS.

How can the SON still be a teenager in high school if the man who fathered him (Bobby) died in a car race in the 1950's? There's no doubt this movie clearly takes place in the mid 80's and it's post-michael jackson thriller/synthesizer 80's. They remind you of this every few minutes with the fashions/lingo/and music.

The first scene, was definitely the late 50's givin' the cars, the clothes, the style, even Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On (1957!) and all the other stereotypical 50's stuff.

So at BEST if we're dealing with him dying in '59, and the present being 1984 (no possible way for it to be before then)
that's still 25 years that have gone by. How does this make sense?

Thanks
Stay-C
SPOUT
www.spoutmusic.com

Re: HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager

Well..the actor that played "Bobby" was supposed to be a high school senior when he died, but he was actually 27 at the time...so they stayed consistent with that age! Very funny, I've seen this flick a bunch of times but never did the math before.

Re: HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager

Actually the opening scene is black with white text which reads "The Ridge, Early 1960s"--nice and ambiguous. After the bizarre D.C. Metro rail version of Purgatory, the setting is labeled as "Present Day", which we can assume is some time around 1985 when the film was produced. So even if you stretch the margins and assume a 1964 interpretation of "...Early 1960s", and subtract one year from the production date you still are left with a 20 year old "Present Day" high school kid. I guess Bobby's son was held back a few years.

By the way, I am not a huge fan of this film. The reason I can recall so many specific elements is because I just suffered through it. I don't know why I did that, in fact. I must be extremely bored.

Re: HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager

no, actually , it was the late 60"s and that would make him around 17!

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Re: HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager

On the back of the movie cover, it states that Lenny is 17. It never really gives dates in the movie, only that it begins at "The Ridge" in the 'early 1960's'...then meets up with Lenny in 'the Present Day'. So the Present day might just be 1980, and Bobby died in 1963... who knows. But Lenny is 17 however you do the math.

Re: HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager

Actually no.Look at the cover of the vhs copy and read what it say's I noticed this a while ago,It says Bobby returns 20 years later to help his son,That would actually make Lenny 20 in the story.Don't think about the years.Just someone not thinking when they did the cover for the vhs.

Re: HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager


Well,since the fact that the story of a teenager fathered by a man who was himself a teenager when he died is reliant on the known facts that 1)the father died in a car incident in the early 1960s and 2)the film was released and is left to be inferred that the son is a teenager in "Present day",and the present day is to be 1985,the year this was released,I'd say this matters,since this is a mesage board ABOUT said movie.
BUt to answer KIllMe's question,I can't say I give much of a *beep* about this,either.







MELLON:Hey,relax,I didn't se nothin'! By the way,YOU'RE PERFECT!

Re: HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager

I have an idea! why don't we look into what the present time was when the story was written, not when it was produced. that might help. I'm not entirely sure how to figure that out though, so carry on. As you were. By the way, does anyone know if this movie had a sequel and what it would have been called?

What are you doing here? and why do you look like ET? -Shaolin Soccer

Doing the math…

Ok, let's look at it this way:

"Early 1960s" could mean anywhere from 1960-1964 depending on your viewpoint. The rest of the movie is set in the early 1980s, which given the scenery would most likely mean 1982-85. Ok?

Now, let's add in something which I don't think anyone else has mentioned... the 9 months it takes between conception and birth. So while Lenny could have been as old as 25 (born in late 1960, movie set in late 1985,) he could also have been born as late as 1965. The movie could easily be set in 1983, be a few months before his birthday, and have everything still make sense.

To those of you inflexible enough to believe that it couldn't take place any earlier than 1985, please remember that the story/script was probably written in 1982 or so and the deals finally settled by 1984. Shooting would probably have taken place in mid-late 1984. It was finally released in July, 1985.

Most importantly, though... it's a work of fiction and a very, very minor one at that.

Re: HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager?

LOL...Just read the vhs cover if you have the original,It says Bobby returns 20 years later,which would make Lenny 20 actually.Someone goofed up on the vhs cover with the wording.Check it out and tell me if that helps ya out.

Re: HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager?

Personally,

I think the best argument I've read of the above is: to look at when the story was written, if it was released in 1985, I have doubts as to it being written any later than 1982 (it takes a while for movies to get made). I think the first scene was 1963 because by 1964 all styles and fashions were totally different (due to The British Invansion).
So car crash 1963, 9 months later=1964. The present day could be 1981, or 1982. Although most of the country was still dressing like the 1970s, places like California and probably South Florida where the movie was shot and takes place, was already very much influenced by the Retro and New Wave scene; check out movies like "The Last American Virgin" and films around that time. The rest of the country cought on by the mid 80s. However, production design of "The Heavenly Kid" was a little over the top, I'm guessing because they really wanted to show the maximum difference in the time that passed, so it seemed a little later later on in the 80s. I'm also guessing that they used ambigous words like (the early 60s) and (present day) because otherwise giving specific years would give away the twist. As soon as one sees it takes place 17 or 18 years later they'll say to themselves "oh I bet one of these kids is his son, otherwise why 17 years later?" The way they did it masks the twist a little better. As for the knucklehead who wrote on the movie cover "20 years later" I can't explain that other than idiocy, the guy who wrote that should be banned from writing movie covers.
I've also been thinking a lot about this lately since I recently met the actor playing Bobby and he asked me if I realized Lenny was Bobby's son, while watching the movie before it was mentioned. So thinking back to when I was 10, I think the apparent math mistake and ambigous wording let me fall for the twist better than it would have otherwise. But I too was left scraching my head, even at 10 years old.
Also keep in mind, writers are not math wizzes so it's not surprising a math mistake could have been made, although in this case I think it actually works out.

Re: HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager?

Well I don't know about all of that but it's a pretty easy answer which hopefully most people have figured out by now.Either way the movie never gets old to me.You met him (Bobby)and he asked that right off the bat?Or I assume you brought the movie up first?Let me know if possible and was he nice?

Re: HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager?

Actually I was sitting in on an acting class that my friend was taking, not knowing who the teacher would be. He looked familiar at first but I wasn't sure where; then it dawned on me and my friend confirmed. So at the break I went up and spoke to him, my friend had already introduced us. I mentioned I loved the movie as a kid and we spoke about it. So I brought it up first yes, and he asked me if I figured out that Lenny was his son and honestly I couldn't remember.
He's pretty awesome yes, and seems a lot like the character, same laugh, very blunt etc. Also it brings back flashbacks now that I'm enrolled in the class. Just like he gave advice to Lenny on how to carry himself, talk and express himself and so on - he does the same for us in the class. So obviously I can't stop thinking of the movie.

Re: HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager?

LOL,That's cool he seems like he would be cool to meet.I work in south calif with the studios and have met alot of big hollywood actors but would rather meet him over any of them.I would probably be the same way after meeting him since his personality pretty much matches the character.Are you gonna have another class with him anytime soon?If I may ask what state are you in or were you in when you met him?

Re: HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager?

I've been enrolled in the class for about 2 weeks now. I'm also in Southern California.

Re: HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager?

Wow that's cool.I wouldn't think he would be in california.For some reason that is surprising.I saw him one other time on a tv show and don't remember what it was but he was being arrested I think.The heavenly kid though has always been one of my fav movies.So he seems like a nice guy huh?

Re: HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager?

Yeah, it cought me by surprise also, but southern California seems to have ways of keeping people here who have worked in entertainment. So I guess I shouldn't be so surprised. Since I've been here I've crossed paths with several people whose work I loved as kid. By the way Lewis Smith (Bobby) was also in "The Adventures of Bucharoo Banzii". I actually saw that movie first but didn't realize until recently that it was the same guy. He's also had quite a few other roles (none of which I've seen) if you look him up on IMDB.
The Heavenly Kid was one of about 10 movies that my brother and I use to own and watch over and over again as kids and felt like we actually new the characters personally. And yes He's a nice guys but he can be a tough teacher.

Re: HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager?

Yeah I have met alot of actors here in so cal also,mainly because I go to all of the studios on a daily basis.I don't remember what tv show it was that he was on but all have to look it up.I felt the same way when watching the heavenly kid.Myself and 2 brothers always watched it when it was on tv.I'm glad I caught it on cinemax and recorded it onto a dvd.I don't know why they haven't released it yet with both versions.It's one of my fav 80's movies and it's still always fun to watch.Talk 2 ya later.Take care.

Re: HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager?

I just wanted to say I accidently stumbled onto this discussion about The Heavenly Kid and loved the fact that other people besides me loved this movie! I used to watch it all the time when I was little with my younger brother and both of us are always surprised when no one else knows the movie. I loved it so much I went on ebay looking for anything to do with the movie and found a huge movie poster that I bid on and won for $1, plus $6 shipping, but it still was a steal for me. That is so awesome that you met Lewis Smith, Im sure hes a good guy... there is no way Bobby wouldn't be. This movie is a staple in my childhood and reading how other people loved it too made my day. Thanks!

Re: HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager?

Sorry I haven't responded to your comments earlier. I don't know if you're still checking this site. But I know what you mean. My brother and I have a list of movies we always made our friends watch and for some of them we were surprized when people had seen them because they were like characters that only existed between us and our friends. And others we were suprized when no one had heard of them. When we got older we realized that some of them were actually famous movies, others weren't.

Those movies were:


The Karate Kid
The Wanderers
The Outsiders
The Warriors
Rumble Fish
Enter the Dragon
Over the Edge
A Clockwork Orange
The Heavenly Kid

Those are all that come to mind right now.

Glad to know others loved this movie, too


That is so neat that you met the guy who played Bobby. I agree with mike, he from the character he played, he does/did seem like a nice/cool person to meet. I remember i really liked his character. This was one of my favorite movies back then, too. I'm 35 now. I'll have to rent this movie and watch it again soon.

Re: HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager?


LOL...Just read the vhs cover if you have the original,It says Bobby returns 20 years later,which would make Lenny 20 actually.Someone goofed up on the vhs cover with the wording.Check it out and tell me if that helps ya out.


If you count the 9 months the mom was pregs then it would make him 19. and he could be a 19 year old Sr.

Re: HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager?

Wow, I never paid attention to the math..LOL. Cool point out.

"It's the talk of tounge" - Color Shock colorful.gif

Re: HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager

1962 was a bad year for Bobby. First he drove 300ft over a cliff, then they wouldn't let him into heaven..
Here is a tagline for the film that sheds some light on this subject. Lenny was born in 1963 and the movie takes place 17 years later in 1980/81 and the wardrobe and set departments went over board with the 80's look.that solves it.

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Re: HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager

This one has been haunting me for 21 years!! I wish they would have put the math in the movie dates instead of being so vague ("present" etc) cause that is the only flaw in a great 80's movie....plus Lewis Smith is from my hometown!!!

Re: HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager

OK well I only watched it today on Sky but it said in the synopsis that the crash was in 1968 which would mean Lenny would be 17-18 depending on how far along she was or what time of the year the crash was. Give or take a year basically.

Hope this helped.

Re: HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager

To those of you inflexible enough to believe that it couldn't take place any earlier than 1985, please remember that the story/script was probably written in 1982 or so and the deals finally settled by 1984. Shooting would probably have taken place in mid-late 1984. It was finally released in July, 1985.

Insane Larry has a good point. The movie was actually filmed in 1983. God knows why it took 2 years for this movie to be released. Maybe it has something to do with the film being an Orion picture. They had a lot of financial problems for quite a while before they finally went under after their movie "Clifford" was released.

Re: HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager

So it's solved, the math makes sense. Hollywood wasn't really that sloppy with the years in this case. One of the comments said the crash happened in 1968, that is clearly wrong, no further comments for that.
However I bet the reason the dates were left ambigous, was not so much because of sloppy math, but because they didn't want to give the twist away. If in the beginning it gave a spefific date 1963 for example, then in the latter sequence it said, "17 or 18 years later" everyone would know: duh "this must be his son". At least this way, it's a nice twist for people how don't have their antennas out for the whole movie.

Re: HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager

Actually that is correct. I have watched this movie dozens of times(usually because there is nothing else on tv). The crash was supposed to take place in the late 60's and then it jumps to the mid 80's.

Re: HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager?

WHO CARES ANYWAY??
Was this a true story. A docu where we can do our figureing???? Wow, I dodn't know that after our death we go for a earthly train ride up there somewhere. Someone should comment on that. The author should be hung by the kneck until dead. He made a terrible mistake in several places. WHY HAVE I SEEN THIS MOVIE OVER 30 TIMES WHRN IT HAS SO MANY FAULTS??????????

ANSWER; Because it is a heartwarming story about a guy who was given a second chance to make things right. To see how his kid was growing up even when he didn't know it was his own son. They can make all the mistakes they want as long as the storyline is good and entertaining. And moves along with suspense and interest. Get a life, you commenters out there, and look at things the way they were ment to be. And thanks for reading this. I needed to say what had to be said.

mizes2000@t-online.de

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Re: HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager?

No doubt the script was written years before it was filmed and released, which is not uncommon. The first draft of Back to the Future, which can be found online, is dated 1979. (Doc's pet is a chimp instead of a dog, and get this: THE TIME MACHINE IS NOT A CAR!!)

But yeah, although the title card in THIS movie places the opening scene in the early 60's, the style of dress, music, cars, and other Rebel w/o a Cause references date the scene pretty specifically to the mid-50's, but oh well.

The same way you could argue the "present day" is supposedly when the script was written in the late 70s/very early 80s, despite again the clothes, cars, music, etc placing the bulk of the movie directly into the mid-80s.

No matter how you look at it, it just doesn't ad up. Which makes this bad movie more interesting, let's face it.

-------
You cheated on me, when I specifically asked you not to?!

Re: HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager

I think he was born in late '65, making him 19 when the film takes place in 1985, before he turns 20. Maybe he failed a grade or two. Then again, he analyzes literature better than anyone Mr. Finley has ever had, ever. He might have been going to Community College or something.

Re: HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager?

LOL wow, people are taking this movie too seriously, but really who cares.

Re: HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager?

I have not seen this movie in probably about 7 or 8 years and, to tell you the truth, I don't even remember them putting on the screen what year it was when the crash happened. But I do remember him saying at one point that he'd been riding the train for 30 years. Maybe it just felt like 30 years to him.

Anyhow, I always liked the movie and have seen it many times since I was a kid. It's a good movie. High school movies made in the '80s are definitely guilty pleasures for me. I know HBO used to have it on rotation every few years where they play the hell out of it for about a month -- like they do with all their movies.

By the way, this movie popped into my head today when I saw that HBO was playing "The Heartbreak Kid" with Ben Stiller. For a second there I thought I read "The Heavenly Kid" when I was rapidly skimming through the cable guide on the television and was disappointed when I backtracked and it turned out to be "The Heartbreak Kid." Bummer.

Re: HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager?

The Rock n'Roll/Greaser era ended in about '62/'63 (American Graffiti anyone remembers?) so the "early 60's" must be beetween those years. If the car crash ocurred (lets say...) in 1963 w/the girl pregnant,the baby born 1 year later,1964. "Heavenly Kid" was shot in 1983 but only released in 1985, so the script probably was written in 1981/82 so... 1964 to 1981 = 17 YEARS OLD! That's the correct age to the boy,doin'the math all makes sense!

I'm a Greaser myself and i collect Greaser related movies (from the 50's 'til now) "Heavenly Kid" isn't one of the best,but is pretty much enjoyable to watch. This movie plotline was used 4 years later in a Jason Priestley TV Series called "Teen Angel" and "Teen Angel Returns" (1990) both produced by Disney. It's an almost forgotten series but it's very nice to watch,if u can find it,i suggest u to see.

Cheers!

Re: HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager?


Um,you guys missed the point...There is no math to be done. He appears in his prime,the memory his old girlfriend had of him and when he would be able to be there for his son at an early age himself.Why the hell are you guys doing math and trying to figure out his age when there is nothing to figure out.
SARAH PALIN. Hero of the stupid.

Re: HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager?

Tag line: 1962 was a bad year for Bobby. First he drove 300ft over a cliff, then they wouldn't let him into heaven...

So yeah, the only way it makes sense is if the "present" is 1979-1980 (if the son is 17 or 18).

Re: HELP! How does the MATH add up? a 27 year old high school teenager?

you assume the girl got pregnant in the 60's...you forget the frozen spermcicle she kept in the freezer
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