Honey, I Shrunk the Kids (1989) Movie Review

By: Alex Phuong (Two Beers) –

Disney is oftentimes known for its animated classics.  After all, Walt Disney himself pioneered that genre when he made Snow White and the Seven Dwarves in 1937.  As the Disney studio was trying to diversify its films, though, its filmmakers began to experiment with live-action family flicks.  One of the most memorable films to have come from the 1980s was Honey, I Shrunk the Kids, and this film allowed Disney to try making a science-fiction film that would appeal to both kids and adults.

A Toast

The film actually features some very clever special and visual effects.  It even won a BAFTA for that particular category!  It seems a bit unfortunate that the Academy failed to acknowledge this film because it took a lot of filmmaking wizardry in order to make it look like the kids and teens in the film really did shrink into the size of insects.  The production team actually spent more than nine months creating a wide variety of props ranging from large blades of grass to a giant ant that would terrorize the children.  All of those months of hard work paid off, though, since the perilous situations that the kids undergo look shockingly realistic as they did their best to survive such horrific situations.

Beer Two

Even though this film is a family flick, it is not actually family-friendly.  There are suggestive comments, mildly profane terms scattered throughout the film, and a ton of action and adventure violence.  It is rather surprising that this is a Disney film since Disney is oftentimes labeled as a studio that would make films intended for very young children.  Then again, many critics question the innocence of Disney films, including The Little Mermaid, which coincidentally came out the same year as Honey, I Shrunk the Kids in 1989.  Perhaps Disney was trying to abandon its wholesome image as the studio began to expand in the late 1980s.


The title of this film is iconic, and many film lovers are aware about the basic plot once they hear this particular title.  It might not be the greatest Disney live-action film ever made, but it did allow Disney to create a family film that is not an animated fairy tale.  Honey, I Shrunk the Kids will always remain a memorable picture because of the meticulous attention to detail used to make it look like a father actually did shrink his kids.

Honey, I Shrunk the Kids (1989) Drinking Game

Take a Drink: whenever friends and neighbors label the Szalinskis as “weird.”

Take a Drink: during every reference to “French class.”

Drink a Shot: every time the kids have to deal with violence and peril after they shrank.

About Alex Phuong

Alex Andy Phuong earned his Bachelor of Arts in English from California State University-Los Angeles in 2015. His love affair with cinema began after discovering Turner Classic Movies in the summer of 2004. His favorite film director is Woody Allen, and his favorite movie star is Kate Winslet.

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