The Wild Life (film)

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The Wild Life
The Wild Life film poster.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed byArt Linson
Produced by
Written byCameron Crowe
Music by
CinematographyJames Glennon
Edited byMichael Jablow
Distributed byUniversal Pictures
Release date
‹See TfM›
  • September 28, 1984 (1984-09-28)
Running time
96 minutes
CountryUnited States
Budget$6 million
Box office$11 million

The Wild Life is a 1984 American comedy-drama film written by Cameron Crowe and directed by Art Linson.[1] It stars Christopher Penn, Lea Thompson, Ilan Mitchell-Smith, Jenny Wright, Eric Stoltz, Rick Moranis, Hart Bochner, and Randy Quaid. Edward Van Halen and Donn Landee composed the film's score.[1]

Plot summary[edit]

The plot concerns three teenagers living in the suburbs of Los Angeles. Bill (Eric Stoltz) has just graduated from high school and got his first apartment. His younger brother Jim (Ilan Mitchell-Smith), who is fixated on Vietnam and the Vietnam war, spends a lot of time practicing with his Nunchakus, getting high, listening to heavy metal on his boombox, and hanging out with Vietnam vet Charlie (Randy Quaid). Other important characters include Tom (Christopher Penn), a hedonistic high-school wrestling champ who works with Bill at a bowling alley, Harry (Rick Moranis) a trendy department store manager, Anita (Lea Thompson), Bill's ex-girlfriend who works at a donut shop, and Eileen (Jenny Wright), Anita's friend and Tommy's girlfriend who works at the department store with Harry. Anita has a fling with a cop named David (Hart Bochner) who, unknown to Anita, is married. The three boys set out for a night of fun and craziness at a strip bar and later on have a party at Bill's apartment.



"The Wild Life" is a song written and performed by English female pop music vocal group Bananarama. It was composed for and included in the movie and on its soundtrack. The single peaked at number 70 on the Billboard Hot 100 in December 1984.[2]

The film's soundtrack included music by the likes of Prince, Madonna, Little Richard, Van Halen, Billy Idol, Steppenwolf, and Jimi Hendrix. Music licensing fees have prevented The Wild Life from receiving an uncut release on DVD. Universal formerly offered a made-to-order disc in its Vault series, with many of the songs removed.[3]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Maslin, Janet (September 28, 1984). "The Wild Life (1984) 'THE WILD LIFE' OPENS". The New York Times.
  2. ^ "Hot 100". Billboard. December 15, 1984.
  3. ^ Williams, Owen (June 17, 2015). "Distribution Denied! 25 Films You Can't Get on DVD". EmpireOnline. Retrieved March 20, 2019.

External links[edit]