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Honey, I Shrunk the Kids
Honey I Shrunk the kids.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Joe Johnston
Produced by Penney Finkelman Cox
Screenplay by Ed Naha
Tom Schulman
Story by Stuart Gordon
Brian Yuzna
Ed Naha
Starring Rick Moranis
Matt Frewer
Marcia Strassman
Kristine Sutherland
Music by James Horner
Cinematography Hiro Narita
Editing by Michael A. Stevenson
Studio Walt Disney Pictures
Silver Screen Partners III
Distributed by Buena Vista Pictures
Release date(s) June 23, 1989 (1989-06-23)
Running time 94 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $18 million
Money made $222.7 million

Honey, I Shrunk the Kids is a 1989 American comic science fiction film. The directorial debut of Joe Johnston and produced by Walt Disney Pictures, it tells the story of an inventor who accidentally shrinks his and his next door neighbor's kids to a quarter of an inch with his electromagnetic shrinking machine and accidentally throws them out with the trash, where they must venture into their backyard to return home while fending off insects and other obstacles.

Rick Moranis stars as Wayne Szalinski, the inventor who accidentally shrinks his kids, Amy (Amy O'Neill) and Nick (Robert Oliveri). Marcia Strassman portrays his wife, Diane, to whom he delivers the titular line. Matt Frewer, Kristine Sutherland, Thomas Wilson Brown, and Jared Rushton star as Russ, Mae, Russ Jr., and Ron Thompson, the Szalinskis' next door neighbors.

The film became an unexpected box office success, grossing in excess of $222 million worldwide, and became the highest-grossing live-action Disney film ever, a record it held for five years. It was met with positive reviews from both critics and audiences, who praised the story, visuals and innovation. Its success spawned two sequels Honey, I Blew Up the Kid in 1992 and the direct-to-video Honey, We Shrunk Ourselves in 1997, which both received mixed critical reception, as well as leading to the creation of a TV show that ran from 1997 to 2000.


Scientist and inventor Wayne Szalinski lives in his suburban home at Fresno, California attempting to perfect a ray gun capable of shrinking objects, but it keeps blowing up the apples he uses as test subjects instead. After an argument between him and his wife, Diane, she spent the previous night with her mother and is currently at work, worrying about their daughter, Amy, and son, Nick, who has inherited Wayne's inventive ingenuity and intelligence. Their next door neighbors, the Thompsons, are getting ready for a fishing trip, but their oldest son, Russ Jr., is less than enthusiastic, as his and Russ' interests often clash, resulting in him feeling belittled, and he is more interested in meeting Amy than spending the weekend camping. Their younger son, Ron, however, is enthusiastic, though his relationship with Russ is strained when he inadvertently sets off a booby trap in the yard.

Wayne instructs Amy and Nick to clean the house in preparation for Diane's return before leaving for his conference. Nick is assigned to mow the lawn, but he makes a deal to let his friend, Tommy Pervis, do it with the remote-controlled lawnmower, but the latter has to leave and promises to do it later. Later, Ron accidentally hits his baseball through the Szalinskis' attic window, which inadvertently activates the machine and blocks its targeting laser. Caught by Russ Jr., he is made to confess to Amy and Nick, and Amy has Nick take Ron to retrieve the ball and pay for the window. They come upon the machine and are hit by its beam, thus shrinking them.

At his conference, Wayne is laughed at for failing to provide proof of his shrinking machine and leaves in frustration, while back at home Amy and Russ Jr. go to check on Ron and Nick and are shrunk by the ray as well. When Wayne returns home, they try to get his attention, but their voices are too small and he is unable to hear them. Frustrated by his day and the broken window he discovers, he takes it out on the machine, damaging it and nearly crushing the kids with the fragments. He then sweeps the debris (and the kids) into a dust pan and takes them out in a trash bag. They escape from it, but are forced to cross the uncut yard's wilderness to get back to the house.

Meanwhile, Diane returns home and she and Wayne make up, but they soon grow concerned about Amy and Nick. While trying to summon their dog, Quark, Nick falls into a flower, he and Russ Jr. are carried away by a pollen picking worker bee, and are nearly killed by Wayne as he tries to swat it with a baseball bat, causing it to crash land. Wayne realizes that a baseball was what caused the attic window to break since Nick doesn't play sports.Investigating, he realizes what happened to the kids; afraid to step on the lawn, he uses stilts to search for them and accidentally activates the sprinklers, which causes chaotic torrents to come down on them. Amy nearly drowns when she is knocked into a pool of mud, but Russ Jr. saves her with mouth-to-mouth resuscitation.

Meanwhile, Wayne arranges a sling to hover over the lawn and search for the kids. Next door, Russ and Mae are forced to call off their trip because their sons haven't returned yet, and they call the police to report them missing. Wayne tells Diane about what happened to the kids, and she joins in the search after a short panic attack. Eventually, she convinces Wayne to tell Russ and Mae, who are extremely skeptical. Russ angrily threatens Wayne, but leaves his porch light on just in case.

Soon, the kids' hunger is saved by one of Nick's oatmeal creme cookies, but their meal is interrupted by an ant scouting it. Ron decides to tame it in order to take them home. Soon they grow attached to "Antie" and try to set him free, but he instead decides to follow Ron like a loyal pet. The kids find a Lego to camp in for the night, and after a heartfelt conversation about their feelings for each other, Russ Jr. and Amy kiss. However, they are attacked by a scorpion, which traps Ron in the Lego. Antie comes to rescue Ron, but is fatally stung before the kids unite and wound the scorpion, driving it off.

The next morning, Tommy returns to mow the lawn. Nick recognizes the danger and they run, seeking shelter in an earthworm burrow; Wayne and Diane stop Tommy just in time to save the kids, who are blown out of the burrow by the lawnmower's blades. Quark chances upon them, and while riding him into the house, Nick loses his grip and falls into Wayne's bowl of Cheerios; he is nearly eaten before Quark bites Wayne in the ankle, making him aware of Nick and the others' presence.

Back in the attic, the kids make Wayne realize that the laser was generating too much heat, causing things to blow up, until it was blocked by the baseball. He corrects the mistake, and Russ volunteers as a subject for a successful test. The kids are then returned to their normal sizes and reunited with their parents. Months later, at Thanksgiving, the Szalinskis and Thompsons, now close friends, are toasting over an enlarged turkey. Russ Jr. and Amy are apparently dating now, while Ron and Nick are friends, and Quark is eating from an enlarged Alpo bone.


  • Rick Moranis as Wayne Szalinski
  • Matt Frewer as Russell "Russ" Thompson, Sr.
  • Marcia Strassman as Diane Szalinski
  • Kristine Sutherland as Mae Thompson
  • Thomas Wilson Brown as Russell "Russ" Thompson, Jr.
  • Jared Rushton as Ronald "Ron" Thompson
  • Amy O'Neill as Amy Szalinski
  • Robert Oliveri as Nick Szalinski
  • Carl Steven as Tommy Pervis
  • Mark L. Taylor as Don Forrester
  • Kimmy Robertson as Gloria Forrester
  • Lou Cutell as Dr. Brainard
  • Laura Waterbury as Female Cop
  • Trevor Galtress as Male Cop
  • Martin Aylett as Harold Boorstein
  • Janet Sunderland as Lauren Boorstein
  • Craig Richard Nelson as Prof. Frederickson (uncredited)
  • Frank Welker as Special Vocal Effects (voice)
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