Film / Now and Then

A 1995 film about four girls growing up in Shelby, Indiana. The bulk of the story takes place in a flashback to 1970 when the girls were 12, and is told from a single point of view.

A family-friendly edition was also released on VHS (as a part of the New Line Home Video Family Line series) as much as a DVD release. There are no plans for a Blu-ray Disc release (as Warner Home Video backed out of the licensing deal with Mill Creek Entertainment).

Essentially a Gender-flipped version of the 1986 classic Stand by Me. Definitely not to be confused with the anime Now and Then, Here and There.

The film includes the main characters both as 12-year-olds and as adults. Casting different actors.
  • Samantha Albertson. In youth played by Gaby Hoffmann, in adulthood by Demi Moore.
  • Chrissy De Witt. In youth played by Ashleigh Aston Moore, in adulthood by Rita Wilson (who often appeared in Raise Your Voice and Runaway Bride).
  • Roberta Martin. In youth played by Christina Ricci, in adulthood by Rosie O'Donnell.
  • Tina "Teeny" Tercell. In youth played by Thora Birch, in adulthood by Melanie Griffith.

Written by I. Marlene King, who later developed another, very different story about four female friends as much as Just My Luck with Lindsay Lohan (as a Gender-flipped, Freaky Friday (2003)-ified movie).

This film contains examples of:

  • Adults Are Useless: Played with; the girls' parents aren't monsters, but they're not exactly model parents. (Although it can be argued that, at the very least, Chrissy's mom's prudery is justified by the generation she grew up in (most likely the late 1940s/early '50s).
  • Babies Ever After: Chrissy and Morton.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Do not fake your death in front of Chrissy. She's got a hell of a right hook.
  • Blonde, Brunette, Redhead: Teeny is blonde, Sam and Roberta are brunettes, and Chrissy has auburn hair.
  • Bookends: The story begins and ends with a game of "Red Rover".
  • Coming-of-Age Story
  • Deadpan Snarker: Roberta and Samantha had shades of this.
  • Disappeared Dad: Samantha's father walks out on the family. This is especially significant because of the time period ("At the time, no one had ever gotten a divorce, and the last thing I wanted was to be different.")
    • Chrissy's and Teeny's fathers are absent for respectively unspoken reasons or because of neglect.
  • Distaff Counterpart: The whole movie to Stand by Me, except no one dies.
  • Dramedy
  • Fish out of Water: How Sam feels coming back to her childhood home of Shelby, Indiana.
  • Flashback
  • Four-Girl Ensemble: Chrissy is the sweet naïve one, Teeny the fashionista, Roberta the tomboy and Samantha is the omniscient narrator.
  • Girliness Upgrade: After Roberta's first kiss.
  • Gone Swimming, Clothes Stolen: The girls' revenge ploy on the bullying Wormer boys.
  • Growing Up Sucks
  • Hypocritical Humor: In the adult scenes, Chrissy repeatedly orders her friends not to swear around her unborn baby (she even thinks "breast" is a dirty word). Towards the end of the movie, she again tells Sam not to do this. The scene cuts to Chrissy in the delivery room, having a very painful contraction, and screaming, "SHIT!" at the top of her lungs.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Scott Wormer.
  • Miss Conception: Played straight with Chrissy's mother. Cleverly subverted in this exchange of dialogue:
    Teeny: Have you ever been french kissed?
    Chrissy: Are you kidding? I don't want to get pregnant.
    Roberta: You can't get pregnant from kissing.
    Chrissy: I know that, beetle brain. But, it's common knowledge, if you tongue kiss a boy, he automatically thinks you'll do the deed with him. It's the male curse.
  • Missing Mom: Roberta's mother died when she was 4.
  • Misunderstood Loner with a Heart of Gold: Crazy Pete
  • Na´ve Everygirl: Chrissy has shades of this.
  • Parent with New Paramour: Samantha's mother. Samantha is understandably Not Pleased.
  • Parental Neglect: Teeny's parents leave her alone a lot, going to the Country Club or hosting parties.
  • Raised by Dudes: How tomboy Roberta grew up.
  • Screaming Birth: Chrissy, near the end of the film.
  • Skinny Dipping: The Wormer boys at one point do this, and the girls catch them in the act, leading to Gone Swimming, Clothes Stolen (see above).
  • Slap-Slap-Kiss: Roberta and Scott Wormer.
  • The Talk: Chrissy's mother and her overprotective ways lead Chrissy to believe for years that sex is like gardening. ("Planting the seed, watering the flower")
  • Tomboy and Girly Girl: Roberta and Chrissy.
  • Water Guns and Balloons: Early on in the film, the Wormers attack them with jello-filled balloons.