Honey, I Shrunk the Kids (1989)
Article 5865 by Dave Sindelar
Directed by Joe Johnston
Featuring Rick Moranis, Matt Frewer, Marcia Strassman
Country: USA / Mexico
What it is: Shopping cart movie, eighties style
When four children are accidentally shrunk to tiny size by a new invention, they must undertake an odyssey across the back yard.
This is the first time I’ve seen this movie, but I’ve heard about it for years. Somewhere during that time it dawned on me that it was nothing more than a late eighties revival of the Disney “shopping cart” movies. The animated opening credits certainly make it look promising, especially with its borrowing of the “Powerhouse” theme that popped up in Warner Brothers cartoons. The first ten minutes or so keep the fun going, but sadly, things start going downhill after that. Part of the problem lies in the fact that it’s neither as funny, exciting, or fast-paced as it should be. Rick Moranis is in a role he could be having a lot of fun with, but the script really doesn’t make good use of him and spends far too much time with the unpleasant father next door. It’s also paced too leisurely, and it takes itself a lot more seriously than it should, which is a problem when none of the characters are really all that interesting. Ultimately the movie needed a much better script and should have decided just what it really wanted to be; as it is, it falls short in practically every area.