Free Willy

1993 "How far would you go for a friend?"
6| 1h52m| PG| en

When maladjusted orphan Jesse vandalizes a theme park, he is placed with foster parents and must work at the park to make amends. There he meets Willy, a young Orca whale who has been separated from his family. Sensing kinship, they form a bond and, with the help of kindly whale trainer Rae Lindley, develop a routine of tricks. However, greedy park owner Dial soon catches wind of the duo and makes plans to profit from them.


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StyleSk8r At first rather annoying in its heavy emphasis on reenactments, this movie ultimately proves fascinating, simply because the complicated, highly dramatic tale it tells still almost defies belief.
Numerootno A story that's too fascinating to pass by...
Dana An old-fashioned movie made with new-fashioned finesse.
Hitchcoc While the plot is quite hackneyed, it's fine that we have movie like this. The news is out on the treatment of Orcas by places like Sea World. These magnificent creatures are kept in tight quarters and made to perform at shows. Willy is one of those whales, and a young boy, who has had a checkered past, and his friend decide it is time to put him back in the open sea. The movie has to do with the logistics of getting this done. As is usually the case, there are some bad people determined to stop this. While it's lightweight and pretty hard to believe, it's a nice movie with a good heart. I'm happy that my children enjoyed this and developed a good attitude about the treatment of animals.
byson5186 I just finished watching this movie on-demand. Whenever I watch this movie, it takes me back to the year this movie came out, 1993. I remember seeing this when it was in the movie theaters, and how my mom bought this movie on a videotape which my parents still have from back then. I remember this movie as part of my childhood, I became obsessed with Free Willy after seeing it. Man, that was a long time ago over 20-years ago. Sometimes, you wish you could relive the days of your childhood. Besides that, I have to say that no matter how old I get, I feel like people will always remember my generation the Millennials form of entertainment we had especially as kids. Some of the kids today prefer what we grew up with compared to what they are growing up with.So, here is what makes this movie great. Well, again if you saw this movie when you were a kid, it will take you back to your childhood, be a trip down memory lane. You'll even understand the movie now better than when you were a kid. It can be a fun educational form of entertainment. I remember studying Killer Whales/Orcas as a kid. This movie will tell you a lot about them that you probably don't even know as an adult. It's a really happy and entertaining kind of movie. When I watch this movie, it makes me really happy. It's beautiful to see the kind of friendship we see between a kid named Jesse who was abandoned by his mother, and a killer whale held alone in captivity. I'm sure the actor who played Jesse, Jason James Richter is most remembered for this movie, I can't think of any other movies or TV shows he's been in besides these Free Willy movies. They've done 4 Free Willy movies. I've only seen the first two, but the first one is the best. I feel like the second one doesn't seem canon as often times sequels don't seem canon. The 4th one which I haven't seen has a new actress and is a different story. They occasionally do that with movies. Have a movie that's part of the franchise, and while it's a relatable story it's completely different. Like with Home Alone. The first two are the ones we remember the most with Kevin McAllister and his family. They've done 3 more since then, and the last 3 are not relatable minus the slapstick humor and having a kid who is supposed to be Kevin McAllister in the 4th movie.I can't think of too many movies at the top of my head, but there are lots of movies showing the friendship between a kid and an animal. Recent movies which are based on true stories are the two Dolphin Tale movies. I've seen them, and they are wholesome movies that will help you feel good. However, they definitely are not as entertaining as Free Willy. Free Willy is arguably the best movie showing the friendship between some kid and an animal. I'm sure that if you saw this, you'd be entertained and the friendship we see would make you feel good. It will definitely make you happy if this movie were part of your childhood. Oh, the joy of pleasant childhood memories!!
OllieSuave-007 This is a feel-good family film that very much follows the heart-warming and fun adventure elements of Flipper, Lassie and all those animal movies. It involves a boy who risks everything to save a killer whale from extermination by the owners of the aquarium where the creature lives. James Jason Richter did a nice job portraying Jesse, and he has a touching on-screen chemistry with the magnificent orca. The chemistry also demonstrate the friendship, courage and innocence in a teenager's life - some very meaningful and encouraging things, which are sorely missing in some of today's teenage-catered movies and TV shows. I first watched this movie in middle school; it has a bit of a slow plot at times, but it does have its fun adventures and breath-taking scenery, reminding you of a care-free atmosphere and the miracles of life. Overall, it is a heart-warming and innocent film that is great for the entire family.Grade B
SnoopyStyle Willy is a wild orca that was trapped and separated from his parents. He is sent to an aquarium. Jesse (Jason James Richter) is a street kid who gets caught vandalizing the tank. He still believes his mom will come back. His social worker Dwight gets him off as long as he cleans up his mess. He's placed with Glen (Michael Madsen) and Annie Greenwood. Jesse is guarded and Glen is reluctant also. At the aquarium, he befriends Willy who saves his life one night. Willy won't perform for trainer Rae Lindley (Lori Petty) but he's willing to do it for Jesse. The owner Dial (Michael Ironside) is under pressure from the non-performing whale.It's a reasonable family picture. It has a whale and the little kids may find it fascinating. The story is compelling enough that the older kids will also like it. It's very much following a try and true formula. The young lead is acceptable even when he doesn't have the whale. He has some good drama to play off against. It's important to note that Keiko the whale was eventually freed. If that's all the movie achieves, that's plenty.