The Dirt Bike Kid
The Dirt Bike Kid is a 1985 film directed by Hoite Caston, produced by Julie Corman, starring Peter Billingsley and Stuart Pankin, about a boy who discovers a magic dirt bike that has a mind of its own. Part of the story is inspired by Jack and the Beanstalk.
Jack Simmons (Peter Billingsley) is a lazy boy who lives with his widowed mother (Anne Bloom) who is struggling to support herself and her son since the death of her husband. One day, Mrs. Simmons orders Jack to buy groceries with her last $50 bill she has in her savings, but Jack is distracted by a dirt bike race and uses the $50 to buy a dirt bike from a local bully named Max (Gavin Allen). When Jack has the bike, he learns it is alive, or possibly occupied by a friendly spirit, and does things to help out Jack. Mrs. Simmons is furious that Jack spent her money on a dirt bike, and promptly confiscates the bike and sells it to a local shop owner, Mr. Zak (Al Evans), thus recouping her $50. However, the bike returns in the middle of the night to visit Jack. Jack tells this to Mr. Zak, who says Jack can work off his debt by having himself and the bike make deliveries for him.
Jack also plays on a Little League team sponsored by the Doghouse, a hot dog joint owned by Mike (Patrick Collins), who was a lifetime friend of Jack's father and is trying to look out for Jack in the wake of his father's death. The Doghouse is experiencing serious financial problems and is being sought to be demolished by the town's banker Mr. Hodgkins (Stuart Pankin) in order to make way for a second Hodgkins Bank. One of his tellers is Mazie Clavell (Sage Parker) who is also a coach of the rival Little League team. She later quits when she sees Hodgkins as a ruthless businessman who advocates getting ahead at all costs, and begins dating Mike, whom she sees as an honest business owner who faces adversity squarely. Jack and his friend Bo use the bike to help uncover why Hodgkins is after the Doghouse, especially after hacking into the bank's computer they learn that the Doghouse's land would not make a very good location for Hodgkins' bank and that Mr. Hodgkins' personal account is not as sizable as the community is led to believe. Hodgkins learns of Jack's attempt to save the Doghouse, and enlists the aid of Max (who is a player on his Little League team) who brings in a biker named Big Slime (Weasel Forshaw).
When Mr. Hodgkins converses on Jack's house, Mr. Hodgkins calls in Police Chief Salt (John William Galt) of the local force. Chief Salt orders his men to impound the dirt bike in exchange for Hodgkins not foreclosing on Salt's overextended mortgage at Hodgkins' Bank. However, Mazie and Mike come to Jack's aid by paying the impoundment fee for Jack to get his dirt bike back.
When the groundbreaking ceremony on the bank's construction is set to begin by having a bulldozer raze the Doghouse, Jack shows up with his Little League team, who disrupts the event by getting into a pie fight with Max, Hodgkins, and Big Slime's bikers. The dirt bike then takes away a shocked Hodgkins while Jack is driving it, where Jack tells Hodgkins that he is aware of Hodgkins' and Mike's financial problems, and has an idea where all can benefit.
One year later, Hodgkins shows up in a goofy hot dog suit to commemorate the opening of a shopping mall that features a renovated Doghouse and the new Hodgkins Bank, now fully constructed. Bo, once unpopular with girls, is now admired by pretty girls. Jack's mom has found gainful employment, Mike and Mazie are now married and expecting their first baby. Chief Salt now works as a security guard in the bank after having been presumably fired from his job as police chief by the town council for corruption. Big Slime (who is now wearing a shirt and tie and admits his true name is Arthur) has dissolved his biker gang and taken a job as a bank teller in the new Hodgkins Bank. With the community lifted, the dirt bike's magic stops working for Jack, whose mother tells him it may have been magic for Jack only to help him out. Jack gives the bike to another little boy, and it appears the magic returns once again for another child.
The dirt bike used in the film is a 1985 Yamaha YZ80.
- Peter Billingsley as Jack Simmons
- Stuart Pankin as Mr. Hodgkins
- Anne Bloom as Janet Simmons
- Patrick Collins as Mike
- Sage Parker as Mazie Clavell
- Chad Sheets as Bo
- Gavin Allen as Max
- Daniel Breen as Flaherty
- Weasel Forshaw as Big Slime
- John William Galt as Police Chief Salt
- Courtney Kraus as Beth
- Holly Schenk as Sue
- Al Evans as Mr. Zak
On November 18, 2014, "The Dirt Bike Kid" was released on DVD and Blu-ray by Kino Video & Scorpion Releasing based on a new high-definition master.