Tickets are on sale to see RiffTrax LIVE in theaters nationwide! See RiffTrax in a theater near you on August 8th and 13th - OR - See us IN PERSON in Minneapolis on July 27th!

The Boy in the Plastic Bubble

Please choose a format above.

The past decade has not been kind to John Travolta.  It began with Battlefield Earth, and ended with the movies about the middle-aged guys on motorcycles (Wild Hogs), the middle-aged adoptive fathers (Old Dogs), the middle-aged guy who found valuable dancing shoes (Gold Clogs), the middle-aged children's book author who runs at a medium pace (Roald Jogs), and the middle-aged guys who flip milk caps in a meat storage locker (Cold Pogs). 

It may seem like Travolta has gotten a raw deal from movie-going audiences.  Despite the fact that he hasn't had a hit in a long time, believes some crazy things about Thetans, and is starting to resemble the batty aunt you've never seen wear anything but a muumuu, you still feel like maybe the guys deserves a fairer shake than he's gotten.

Then you revisit The Boy in the Plastic Bubble and remember that, no, he in fact doesn't.  His shorts alone in the 1976 made for TV movie render him undeserving of our sympathy til the end of time.  Travolta plays Todd Lubitch, a boy who was born without any immunities and cannot venture outside his sterile environment, lest he slip on a banana peel and end up on America's Funniest Home Videos.  He observes the girl next door's every move through his binoculars, and she responds how all females would in this situation: be finding this cute and falling in love with him. 

Along the way, we meet up with supporting characters Mr. Brady, a hybrid of William Katt/Ian Ziering, and an unaging doctor.  The whole thing is set to a theme by noted orangutan dresser-upper Paul Williams, who makes modern day singers like Bon Iver seem like raging barrels of pure testosterone.

Mike, Kevin & Bill insist that you please leave them alone in their one room shack in the country, so they can riff The Boy in the Plastic Bubble to their hearts content.

Digital Video file formats

Legacy devices (376.32 MB)
Low (611.46 MB)
Medium (1.09 GB)
High (TV) (1.74 GB)
Download to Burn (.iso) (4.33 GB)

All digital products you purchase from are DRM-free, can be played across a large variety of devices, and are yours to keep ... forever! Even if you have a hard drive meltdown, you can always log back into the site and re-download all of your previous purchases.

For our Download and Stream products, you can stream the product to your computer or to your TV via Chromecast, or download to a device that can play the MP4 file format. For more information on our video formats, please see this KB article.

Just the Jokes are simply MP3 files which are DRM free and can be enjoyed on any device that can play this common audio format.

Poster art by <a rel="_blank" href="">Jason Martian</a>
Poster art by Jason Martian

RiffMeter rating

Average: 8.7 (250 votes)

Content Rating


Movie Decade

Release date

July 28, 2010


90 minutes
Captions (Streaming Video)