105 user 44 critic

Honey, I Shrunk the Kids (1989)

The scientist father of a teenage girl and boy accidentally shrinks his and two other neighborhood teens to the size of insects. Now the teens must fight diminutive dangers as the father searches for them.


Joe Johnston


Stuart Gordon (story), Brian Yuzna (story) | 3 more credits »
1,847 ( 208)
Won 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 1 win & 10 nominations. See more awards »




Cast overview, first billed only:
Rick Moranis ... Wayne Szalinski
Matt Frewer ... Big Russ Thompson
Marcia Strassman ... Diane Szalinski
Kristine Sutherland ... Mae Thompson
Thomas Wilson Brown ... Little Russ Thompson (as Thomas Brown)
Jared Rushton ... Ron Thompson
Amy O'Neill ... Amy Szalinski
Robert Oliveri ... Nick Szalinski
Carl Steven ... Tommy Pervis
Mark L. Taylor ... Don Forrester
Kimmy Robertson ... Gloria Forrester
Lou Cutell ... Dr. Brainard
Laura Waterbury ... Female Cop
Trevor Galtress Trevor Galtress ... Male Cop
Martin Aylett Martin Aylett ... Harold Boorstein


On the brink of perfecting his state-of-the-art matter-shrinking machine, the suburban paterfamilias and indefatigable inventor, Professor Wayne Szalinski, realises that his device truly works, when it zaps both his kids and their friends. Now, to return to the relative safety of their home while being reduced to a mere quarter-inch size, the minuscule humans must venture out into the dense and perilous landscapes of their now-immense backyard--a hostile environment where nearly everything spells trouble. Can the kids exit the green maze of grass in one piece? Written by Nick Riganas

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


The most astonishing, innovative, backyard adventure of all time!


PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Did You Know?


The main opening title theme music of the movie is in the tune of "Powerhouse" by Raymond Scott, which was used in several of Carlton W. Stalling's music for Warner Bros Looney Toons scores. See more »


During the scorpion/ant fight the scorpion is seen using his stinger multiple times not even striking the ant but the ground. Scorpions never waste their venom in random situations or even on prey that is smaller than themselves. See more »


[first lines]
Mailman: Good morning, Quark.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The film opens with an animated boy and girl being shrunk and then they are chased by items such as a toaster, a dog, a vacuum, and at the end of the intro, they are trapped in an envelope See more »


Referenced in Social Animals (2018) See more »


Turn It Up
Written by Jeffrey Pescetto (as Jeff Pescetto) and Patrick DeRemer
Performed by Nick Kamen
See more »

User Reviews

Backyard safari fun (but no David Bellamy).
17 January 2009 | by BA_HarrisonSee all my reviews

Whilst watching Honey I Shrunk The Kids on DVD, it occurred to me how much things have changed in the last twenty years: records and typewriters, which feature in the film's opening animated credits, no longer exist ('what are they?', asked my bemused 7-year-old daughter); spectacles have got a lot smaller (the one's sported by the youngest kid in this film are enormous!); computers are now everyday household appliances—not just the play-things of crazy inventors; telephones are a lot easier to use now they don't have cords; Rick Moranis is no longer a box-office draw; and special effects look a whole lot different now we have CGI (not necessarily better, just different).

One thing that hasn't changed, though, is this film's ability to entertain: Joe Johnston's directorial debut is just as enjoyable today as it was when I first saw it two decades ago.

Rick Moranis stars as crazy inventor Wayne Szalinski, whose latest creation, a miniaturisation ray, has one major teething problem: it tends to make things explode. After the machine is whacked by a stray baseball, it finally begins to function correctly, but accidentally shrinks Wayne's children, pretty blonde teen Amy (Amy O'Neill) and chip-off-the-old-block younger son Nick (Robert Oliveri), plus Russ and Ron, the neighbours' sons, to microscopic size. Oblivious to the fact that his machine is now working, and that it has miniaturised his kids, Wayne destroys his machine, sweeps up the pieces (scooping up the four tiny children in the process) and takes the trash to the bottom of the yard.

Now, if they are to have any chance of being returned to normal size, Amy, Nick, Russ and Ron must make a dangerous trek through their yard, facing a variety of dangers on the way.

Utilising detailed oversize props and sets, plus an impressive (for the time) combination of blue screen technology, matte paintings, and stop-motion animation effects, director Johnston creates a string of spectacular set-pieces that sees the children being bombarded by giant water droplets from the garden sprinkler, taking a flight on the back of a bee, being attacked by a scorpion, and befriending a baby ant. Johnston's younger cast members all give credible performances, whilst Moranis does what he does best: acts nerdy and looks worried a lot.

Of course, this being a Disney movie, there is the obligatory happy ending, which sees Wayne finally perfecting his invention and returning the kids to full size. And this being a Disney film, everyone involved learns a valuable lesson in how to get along with others, despite their differences. Which is nice.

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Frequently Asked Questions

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Official Sites:

Disney's Official Site


USA | Mexico



Release Date:

23 June 1989 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Grounded See more »

Filming Locations:

Beverly Hills, California, USA See more »


Box Office


$18,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$14,262,961, 25 June 1989

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Color (Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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