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Firestarter (film)

Firestarter (film)

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Firestarter is a 1984 science fiction
Science fiction
Science fiction is a genre of fiction dealing with imaginary but more or less plausible content such as future settings, futuristic science and technology, space travel, aliens, and paranormal abilities...

 thriller film based on the novel of the same name
Firestarter
Firestarter is a novel by Stephen King first published in 1980. It was nominated for a British Fantasy Award in 1981.The book is dedicated to the author Shirley Jackson: "In Memory of Shirley Jackson, who never needed to raise her voice."...

 by Stephen King
Stephen King
Stephen Edwin King is an American author of contemporary horror, suspense, science fiction and fantasy fiction. His books have sold more than 350 million copies and have been adapted into a number of feature films, television movies and comic books...

. The plot concerns a young girl who develops pyrokinesis
Pyrokinesis
Pyrokinesis, derived from the Greek words and , was the name coined by horror novelist Stephen King for the ability to create or to control fire with the mind that he gave to the protagonist Charlie McGee in Firestarter...

 and the secret government agency
The Shop (Stephen King)
The Shop is a fictional, top secret United States government agency in the writings of Stephen King. It plays a central role as the antagonist in the novel Firestarter, the miniseries Golden Years, and the film The Lawnmower Man, and is an element of the novel The Tommyknockers...

 which seeks to control her. The film was directed by Mark L. Lester
Mark L. Lester
Mark L. Lester is an American writer, producer, and director, primarily of action films.After his debut in 1970 with the film Just Can't Reach, he went on to make his mark with such memorable drive-in fare as Truck Stop Women and Bobbie Jo and the Outlaw...

, and stars Drew Barrymore
Drew Barrymore
Drew Blyth Barrymore is an American actress, film director, screenwriter, producer and model. She is a member of the Barrymore family of American actors and granddaughter of John Barrymore. She first appeared in an advertisement when she was 11 months old. Barrymore made her film debut in Altered...

 and David Keith
David Keith
David Lemuel Keith is an American actor and director. He received Golden Globe nominations for Best Supporting Actor and New Star of the Year – Actor for his performance in An Officer and a Gentleman.-Career:...

. The movie was filmed in and around Wilmington
Wilmington, North Carolina
Wilmington is a port city in and is the county seat of New Hanover County, North Carolina, United States. The population is 106,476 according to the 2010 Census, making it the eighth most populous city in the state of North Carolina...

, Chimney Rock
Chimney Rock, North Carolina
Chimney Rock is a village in Rutherford County, North Carolina, United States. The population was 175 at the 2000 census. The village takes its name from a large granite outcropping located on a summit above the village itself in Chimney Rock State Park....

, and Lake Lure, North Carolina
North Carolina
North Carolina is a state located in the southeastern United States. The state borders South Carolina and Georgia to the south, Tennessee to the west and Virginia to the north. North Carolina contains 100 counties. Its capital is Raleigh, and its largest city is Charlotte...

.

A miniseries
Miniseries
A miniseries , in a serial storytelling medium, is a television show production which tells a story in a limited number of episodes. The exact number is open to interpretation; however, they are usually limited to fewer than a whole season. The term "miniseries" is generally a North American term...

 follow-up to the film, titled Firestarter 2: Rekindled
Firestarter 2: Rekindled
Firestarter 2: Rekindled is a 2002 television miniseries and the sequel to the film adaptation of the Stephen King novel Firestarter...

, was released in 2002 on SCI FI
Sci Fi Channel (United States)
Syfy , formerly known as the Sci-Fi Channel and SCI FI, is an American cable television channel featuring science fiction, supernatural, fantasy, reality, paranormal, wrestling, and horror programming. Launched on September 24, 1992, it is part of the entertainment conglomerate NBCUniversal, a...

 (now known as Syfy
Syfy
Syfy , formerly known as the Sci-Fi Channel and SCI FI, is an American cable television channel featuring science fiction, supernatural, fantasy, reality, paranormal, wrestling, and horror programming. Launched on September 24, 1992, it is part of the entertainment conglomerate NBCUniversal, a...

).

Plot


Andy McGee (David Keith
David Keith
David Lemuel Keith is an American actor and director. He received Golden Globe nominations for Best Supporting Actor and New Star of the Year – Actor for his performance in An Officer and a Gentleman.-Career:...

) met his future wife Vicky Tomlinson (Heather Locklear
Heather Locklear
Heather Deen Locklear is an American actress best known for her television roles as Sammy Jo Carrington on Dynasty, Officer Stacy Sheridan on T.J...

) in college while they were earning money by participating in an experiment in which they were given a dose of a low-grade hallucinogen called LOT-6. The experiment grants Vicky the ability to read minds; Andy can make people do and believe what he wants, but the effort gives him nosebleeds. Andy and Vicky went on to get married, and they now have a 9-year-old daughter named Charlene "Charlie" McGee (Drew Barrymore
Drew Barrymore
Drew Blyth Barrymore is an American actress, film director, screenwriter, producer and model. She is a member of the Barrymore family of American actors and granddaughter of John Barrymore. She first appeared in an advertisement when she was 11 months old. Barrymore made her film debut in Altered...

), who can start fires at will, and also read minds.

Andy comes home from work one day to find that Vicky has been tortured and murdered; the family had already suspected that the government agency that sponsored the experiment, the Department of Scientific Intelligence (aka "The Shop"), was checking on them. The government wants to capture Charlie and harness her powerful firestarting ability as a weapon. Andy rescues Charlie from abduction by agents of The Shop, and for the next year they are on the run.

To protect themselves, Andy writes letters to major newspapers, but mailing them reveals their location. The Shop sends the one-eyed agent John Rainbird (George C. Scott
George C. Scott
George Campbell Scott was an American stage and film actor, director and producer. He was best known for his stage work, as well as his portrayal of General George S. Patton in the film Patton, and as General Buck Turgidson in Stanley Kubrick's Dr...

) to capture them and stop the mail. At the Shop's facility, father and daughter are kept separated. Andy is medicated, and subjected to tests, which show his powers have decreased. Meanwhile, Rainbird takes the role of "John the friendly orderly" to befriend Charlie and encourage her to submit to tests.

Charlie's demonstrated powers increase exponentially, and she continually demands to see her father. Andy stops swallowing his drugs and slowly recovers his power, which he uses to influence Captain Hollister (Martin Sheen
Martin Sheen
Ramón Gerardo Antonio Estévez , better known by his stage name Martin Sheen, is an American film actor best known for his performances in the films Badlands and Apocalypse Now , and in the television series The West Wing from 1999 to 2006.He is considered one of the best actors never to be...

) to arrange an escape from the facility. Charlie tells "John" about the escape, and he makes sure to be there. On his way to rendezvous with Charlie at the facility's stables, Andy learns about Rainbird's ruse, and reveals it to her. Andy forces Hollister to shoot at Rainbird; Rainbird kills Hollister and fatally wounds Andy, then is burned to death by Charlie. With his dying breath, Andy tells Charlie to destroy the facility and run.

Cast

  • Drew Barrymore
    Drew Barrymore
    Drew Blyth Barrymore is an American actress, film director, screenwriter, producer and model. She is a member of the Barrymore family of American actors and granddaughter of John Barrymore. She first appeared in an advertisement when she was 11 months old. Barrymore made her film debut in Altered...

     as Charlie McGee
    Charlie McGee
    Charlene Roberta "Charlie" McGee is a fictional character in the book and films, Firestarter and Firestarter 2: Rekindled. She was created by Stephen King. In the first film, she is portrayed by Drew Barrymore...

    , the pyrokinetic of the title
  • David Keith
    David Keith
    David Lemuel Keith is an American actor and director. He received Golden Globe nominations for Best Supporting Actor and New Star of the Year – Actor for his performance in An Officer and a Gentleman.-Career:...

     as Andy McGee, Charlie's father
  • George C. Scott
    George C. Scott
    George Campbell Scott was an American stage and film actor, director and producer. He was best known for his stage work, as well as his portrayal of General George S. Patton in the film Patton, and as General Buck Turgidson in Stanley Kubrick's Dr...

     as John Rainbird
  • Freddie Jones
    Freddie Jones
    Frederick Charles "Freddie" Jones is an English character actor.Jones was born in the town of Longton, Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire, the son of Ida Elizabeth and Charles Edward Jones. He became an actor after ten years of working as a laboratory assistant with a firm making ceramic products,...

     as Dr. Joseph Wanless, who ran the original experiment
  • Heather Locklear
    Heather Locklear
    Heather Deen Locklear is an American actress best known for her television roles as Sammy Jo Carrington on Dynasty, Officer Stacy Sheridan on T.J...

     as Vicky Tomlinson McGee, Andy's wife, Charlie's mother
  • Martin Sheen
    Martin Sheen
    Ramón Gerardo Antonio Estévez , better known by his stage name Martin Sheen, is an American film actor best known for his performances in the films Badlands and Apocalypse Now , and in the television series The West Wing from 1999 to 2006.He is considered one of the best actors never to be...

     as Captain "Cap" Hollister, head of the Department of Scientific Intelligence
  • Moses Gunn as Dr. Pynchot
  • Art Carney
    Art Carney
    Arthur William Matthew “Art” Carney was an American actor in film, stage, television and radio. He is best known for playing Ed Norton, opposite Jackie Gleason's Ralph Kramden in the situation comedy The Honeymooners....

     as Irv Manders, a farmer who assists the McGees
  • Louise Fletcher
    Louise Fletcher
    Louise Fletcher is an American actress best known for her role as Nurse Ratched in One Flew over the Cuckoo's Nest, for which she won the Academy Award for Best Actress, and as Kai Winn Adami in Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. She also guest starred on the science fiction television series Heroes...

    as Norma Manders, Irv's wife

External links