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Film / The Heavenly Kid

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The Heavenly Kid is a 1985 American romantic comedy fantasy directed by Cary Medoway.

A greaser (Lewis Smith), who died in the 1960s, becomes a guardian angel for a lonely teen (Jason Gedrick) in order for the greaser to gain access to the afterlife.

The movie also stars Jane Kaczmarek, Richard Mulligan, Mark Metcalf, Beau Dremann, and Nancy Valen.

It was released on July 26, 1985.


Tropes for the film:

  • Afterlife Antechamber: Bobby dies in a "chicken" race, and winds up in "Mid-town". He has to ride the Mid-town train before going "Up-town". He is on the train until his case work comes up, which takes about 18 years Earth-time. Seems he left a pregnant girlfriend and their son is following the same path as he did. When he offers to go "Down-town" in his son's place, it earns him the place Up-town.
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  • Afterlife Express: Bobby dies and is immediately transported to a mysterious subway train taking him to the afterlife.
  • Barred from the Afterlife: When Bobby is killed in The '60s and is stuck in "Midtown", and he has to perform some kind of deed before he can go "Uptown". And it turns out that he has to play guardian angel to Lenny, his son with his former girlfriend.
  • Fish out of Temporal Water: How Bobby reacts to the 1980s. The music, fashions and even the places he knew have all changed since the 1960s.
  • Game of Chicken: The cliff variant is how Bobby dies in the opening scene, and towards the end he learns his son Lenny is fated to die in the same way.
  • Healthy in Heaven: The elderly woman suffering from smoking is told before going Uptown that her cough and other ailments will vanish when she arrives up there.
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  • Hub Level: "Midtown", acting as a rest stop for souls of the dead before they go to Heaven ("Uptown")or Hell ("Downtown").
  • Inn Between the Worlds: Midtown also has a bar and restaurant that never closes for people present there to eat, drink and relax.
  • Insistent Terminology: Purgatory and Limbo is referred to as Midtown, Fire and Brimstone Hell is Downtown and Fluffy Cloud Heaven is Uptown.
  • Shout-Out:
    • The whole opening with Bobby dying in a crash from a "chicken" race is a recreation of the similar scene from Rebel Without a Cause. One of the characters even wears a red jacket!
    • After hearing 1980s music, Bobby remarks whatever happened to Elvis Presley and gets told that Elvis went Uptown.
  • Smoky Voice: After Bobby dies, the woman behind him on the train starts coughing and asks in the raspiest voice imaginable "Got a light?" Later, this woman is told by attendants on the escalator going Uptown that her bodily ailments from her smoking will vanish when she arrives above. This does prompt Bobby to really want to go but he is barred.

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