Sorta like a girls' "stand by me". As an adult it didn't hold my interest though.
"Now and Then" opens with a reunion of four friends after more than two decades to witness the birth of their friend's first child. The quartet consists of Roberta (played by Christina Ricci and Rosie O'Donnell), Teeny (played by Thora Birch and Melanie Griffith), Samantha (played by Gaby Hoffman and Demi Moore), and Chrissy (played by Ashleigh Aston Moore and Rita Wilson). The majority of "Now and Then" is reminiscing, their childhood adventures retold. The film's story unfolds in Shelby, Indiana, in the "Gaslight Addition" neighbourhood that seems to be the most boring town on Earth until the summer of 1970 when the four aforementioned friends decided to perform a seance in the city graveyard. Shortly after, these same girls go on an adventure to find out how a kid their age died twenty-five years prior. It's somewhat like "Stand By Me" in this respect, a female counterpart. However, the boy's death is not central here and the mystery itself takes much longer to solve than expected with their clues leading to more questions than answers. It's much more character-driven and each of the four girls have distinct personalities. For example, my favourite character was Roberta for her spunk and tomboyish athleticism, but others could prefer Chrissy's pure albeit wet-behind-the-ears sweetness, Teeny's fame-obsessed extroversion, or Samantha's supportive tendencies. Over the years, I've come to realize that I enjoy films with flashbacks to the seventies, and "Now and Then" is no different. It is appealing to most audiences who like family dramas because it deals with issues like divorce, death, and war, all of which are universally relatable. The catchy soundtrack is outstanding, packed with Motown hits that fit to the period setting. The film's dialogue is equally strong and doesn't feel dated. The only fault I could find with "Now and Then" is that it wasn't longer!
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