Synopsis by Mark Deming
In this adventure drama for the family, based on the popular TV series of the mid-'60s, Sandy Ricks (Elijah Wood) is a moody teenager from Chicago who is not dealing well with the recent divorce of his parents. In the hope that a change of scenery will do him good, Sandy is sent to spend the summer with his Uncle Porter (Paul Hogan), an aging hippie and fisherman who lives on Coral Key, an island off the coast of Florida. The sun and sand do little to improve Sandy's outlook on life, even after he meets Kim (Jessica Wesson), a pretty girl who lives nearby, but he becomes sunnier when he encounters Flipper, a friendly dolphin, while boating with Porter. When Sandy helps save Flipper from a pack of bloodthirsty charter-boat fishermen, led by the mean-spirited Dirk Moran (Jonathan Banks), the dolphin becomes the boy's loyal companion (at least when Sandy is close to the water). But Sandy soon discovers that Dirk is dumping toxic waste into the waters of Coral Key, and with the help of Cathy (Chelsea Field), a friend of Porter's with a background in marine biology, Sandy and Porter try to gather enough evidence so that Sheriff Buck Cowan (Isaac Hayes) will be able to put Dirk behind bars.
dolphin, fisherman, marine-biology, sheriff, Summer, toxic-waste, uncle