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Flight of the Navigator

Published January 19, 2019

Flight of the Navigator

Film info

  • Title Flight of the Navigator
  • Director Randal Kleiser
  • Year 1986
  • Run time 1hr 30m
  • Genres Family, Adventure, Science Fiction
  • Tagline Take off on the ultimate fantasy adventure!

Flight of the Navigator is the action-packed classic 80s adventure into another world. It's 1978 and 12-year-old David Freeman is mysteriously knocked unconscious while out playing. He wakes up and heads for home only to find strangers living there. It's now 1986 and he's been missing for eight years. NASA believes he's been abducted by aliens and want to use him in their research. But with the guidance of a strange unseen entity he discovers a top-secret spaceship and with the help of Max the computer sets off on an incredible mission to get back to the past where he belongs.

Live blog

TimeComment
1:47Always mixed emotions when I see Alan Silvestri - yay, he’s awesome but uh oh, the music’s gonna sound like BTTF!
2:53Frisbee dog championship is fun. How are they judging it?
7:04“If you’re going to learn to swim, you just gotta jump in the water.” I dunno, that seems like bad advice. Especially if it’s deep water.
8:42Midlife crisis at about age twelve, I like it.
12:42That’s really scary to come home and it all be different. Are you going crazy or what?
23:15Loving the subtle transportation of the spaceship. Wide load.
25:52“He’s communicating directly with the computer in binary code.” Ooh, I wish I could do that.
29:00Never trust anyone that winks like that.
30:53Robotic Assistant Labour Facilitator. Such a boring name.
32:45The Big Mac will always be around, dammit.
33:17The dog learnt how to frisbee!
35:49I feel like they shouldn’t have the boy in the same room as the computers and them talking down about him.
41:50It’s so cute, I want a little Ralf!
47:02“I don’t have any vectors, I’m just a kid.”
57:03I like the slightly crazy alien machine thing. Compliant!
1:05:53“Lucky guess.” Sassy robot.
1:08:35The Tokyo people are stood in front of literally the worst green screen I’ve ever seen.
1:15:36“He just said he wanted to phone home.” Genius!
1:19:38At this point it has to be worth the risk of going back in time.
1:25:30He brought the gremlin with him! Yay!

Conclusions

I’d never particularly heard of this film, but it was an easy movie to sit through at the start of what became a huge off-sick-binge-marathon. A solidly eighties film, entertaining enough, but it didn’t quite stand up to something as famous as ET.

I didn’t quite like the changes in tone, from quite a scary start to what looked like it might be an “incompetent government agency” story suddenly turned into a “boy hits the road with a sassy robot” adventure. And the cheek on that robot was fun for a while, but I think they overplayed that card. I would have quite liked them learning a bit more from each other rather than quite so much bickering.

The time travel element of it was fun but again they could have made more of it. Overall, it’s fun for a film to watch when you’re unwell but I don’t know that I’d particularly recommend it.

Rating: 3 / 5

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