Firestarter (1984) Movie Review

Firestarter (1984) Poster

Firestarter (1984)

1984 | R | Horror, Thriller, Sci-Fi, Action
114 minutes / 1h 54min

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Firestarter Plot Synopsis:

Andrew and Vicky McGee met while earning money as guinea pigs for an experiment at college. The experiment was shrouded in suspicion and mystery, and seemed to be related to psychic abilities. The two were married and had a daughter, Charlie, who has the ability to start fires by merely thinking about it, also known as pyrokinesis. Naturally, the government takes a great interest in Charlie, and operatives from the secret department known as "The Shop" want to quarantine and study her.

Firestarter (1984) Review

Firestarter (1984) is a 1h 54-min American sci-fi action-horror film that was based on Stephen King‘s novel Firestarter (1980) and was shot in several locations in North Carolina, USA. Director Mark L. Lester (Commando (1985), Showdown in Little Tokyo (1991), Class of 1984 (1982)) did a great job executing this film that revolves around a secret government agency trying to control a young girl with pyrokinesis. I gave Firestarter a five because it was dragged on at times and then ran at an impressive pace on other occasions - the pacing was all over the place. Drew Barrymore did an excellent job playing Charlie, who has an outburst of violent tantrums. The special effects are worth seeing in this video as I enjoyed them immensely but do keep in mind this is a 1980s film so it will not be up to par with special effects today.

Firestarter splits into three parts. The first part revolves around Andrew ‘Andy’ McGee (David Keith - An Officer and a Gentleman (1982), Behind Enemy Lines (2001), U-571 (2000), Men of Honor (2000)) and Charlie running from the government. Charlene ‘Charlie’ McGee (Drew Barrymore - Donnie Darko (2001), Scream (1996), Charlie’s Angels (2000), My Date with Drew (2004)) is a is a pyrokinetic and Andy is a telekinetic. They are on the run from a government agency name “The Shop” who tracks down people with abilities and tries to control them. We see Andy convincing a cab driver that he is giving him five hundred dollars when he is actually giving him a dollar bill, and he also did other things. One of the things Charlie did to display his ability is setting a man’s leg on fire.

I appreciate that we were treated with flashbacks showing us how Andy and Charlie. Andy started by allowing himself to be a guinea pig for an experimental drug called LOT-6 in college which he shortly after found out gave him special abilities. Andy met a Victoria ‘Vicky’ McGee (Heather Locklear - Melrose Place (1993-1999), Dynasty (1981-1989), T.J. Hooker (1982-1986), Spin City (1999-2002)) that also has abilities resulting in Charlie to be born. Vicky’s ability to read minds and Andy can make people do whatever he wants them.

The second part of the film revolves around The Shop members who managed to capture Andy and Charlie after Charlie massacres a group of agents. Charlie killing those individuals is something that you should not miss. The visual aspects of this segment were astonishing as the fire appears realistic and everything was exceptionally well done.

The third part of the film revolves around showing how the victims dealt with being captured and experimented on. Andy was drugged while Charlie made a deal with a handyman and “The Shop” to see her father once more and she will willingly let them do experiments on her. Charlie did not take long to find out she was betrayed, and we all can guess what happened.

  • Firestarter Rating Scores
  • Our Score: 5
  • Overall Score: 4.96
  • IMDB: 6.0
  • MetaCritic: 5.0
  • Rotten Tomatoes: 3.8

About Firestarter 1984

Title: Firestarter
Year: 1984
Runtime: 114 minutes
Type: Movie
Genre: Horror, Thriller, Sci-Fi, Action
Score: 2.5 / 5 stars
Avg. Rating: 2.48/5 stars from 26,154 users.
Total Avg. Votes: 26,154
MPAA Rating: R
Firestarter Cast Starring: Drew Barrymore, Dick Warlock, George P. Wilbur, Laura Warner, Martin Sheen, Leon Rippy, Heather Locklear, John Sanderford, Freddie Jones, Louise Fletcher, Antonio Fargas, Jack Magner, Moses Gunn, Robert Miano, Drew Snyder, Laurens Moore, George C. Scott, Stanley Mann, Carole Francisco, Carey Fox, Wendy Womble, Orwin C. Harvey, Etan Boritzer, Steve Boles, Joan Foley, Art Carney, Curtis Credel, Keith Colbert, Jeff Ramsey, Lisa Anne Barnes
Firestarter Writers: Stephen King, Stanley Mann
Firestarter Director: Mark L. Lester
Production: MCA Universal Home Video
Language: English
Country: USA