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The Mighty

Theatrical release poster
Directed by Peter Chelsom
Produced by Bob Weinstein
Harvey Weinstein
Written by Rodman Philbrick
Starring Sharon Stone
Gena Rowlands
Gillian Anderson
Harry Dean Stanton
Kieran Culkin
James Gandolfini
Elden Henson
Music by Trevor Jones
Editing by Martin Walsh
Distributed by Miramax Films
Release date(s) October 9, 1998
Running time 100 min.
Country United States
Language English
Budget $100,000
Gross revenue $2,652,246
Preceded by Freak the Mighty

The Mighty is a 1998 comedy-drama film, based on the book Freak the Mighty by Rodman Philbrick.



Kevin (Kieran Culkin) suffers from a rare, inhibiting disability, known as Mucopolysaccharidosis IV, or Morquio syndrome. He is extremely intelligent and prone to flights of fancy. Max (Elden Henson) is an oversized boy suffering from a learning disability called dyslexia. He has flunked the seventh grade twice and is tormented by Blade, a teenage gang leader. When Kevin is assigned as Max's reading tutor, they form a bond of friendship over the similar circumstances they share, such as both being outcasts and their fathers abandoning them. Kevin and Max go to the fireworks and get attacked by Blade and his gang. Kevin then witnesses that same gang of teens putting someone's purse in a sewer later. After Max and Kevin get the purse, they see it belongs to a lady named Lorretta Lee. Kevin and Max return the purse to Lorretta (Gillian Anderson) and see that she is married to Iggy Lee (Meat Loaf), a biker gang leader. Lorretta and Iggy recognize Max as the son of infamous criminal Kenneth "Killer" Kane (James Gandolfini). On Christmas Eve, Max is kidnapped by Kenny Kane and taken to Lorretta's home. Killer Kane tries to murder Lorretta, causing Max to remember when Killer Kane killed Max's mother, which was the whole reason he went to prison in the first place. Kevin then breaks in with a squirt gun and tells Killer Kane that he has sulfuric acid in it. Kevin shoots Killer Kane with the squirt gun and Kane thinks his eyes are burning. Police come and arrest Kane. Max and Kevin go home and celebrate Christmas the next week. After exchanging gifts, Kevin gives Max an empty book and tells Max to write in it. The next morning, Max learns that Kevin has died, causing Max to run outside in barefeet chasing the ambulance. Later, Max remembers Kevin and all the adventures they had and he decides to write it all in the empty book. Max eventually gets writers block on the last page so he puts an illustration of King Arthur's grave, which reads, "Here Lies King Arthur, Once and Future King." Max takes the old ornithopter (his mechanical air plane) that belonged to Kevin and he winds it up, making it fly. Max narrates the final sentence, "So now you have heard the story of Freak the Mighty, who slayed dragons, saved maidens, and walked high above the world."



The film was a commercial flop, even as it received decent reviews and was hailed as the year's Good Will Hunting. Miramax marketed the film in newspaper ads that included Sharon Stone's name and omitted the other cast members, including Freak and Max.

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