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The Gods Must Be Crazy (1980)

PG | | Comedy | 26 October 1984 (USA)
A comic allegory about a traveling Bushman who encounters modern civilization and its stranger aspects, including a clumsy scientist and a band of revolutionaries.



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2 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »
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Complete credited cast:
Michael Thys ...
Nic de Jager ...
Fanyana H. Sidumo ...
Joe Seakatsie ...
Brian O'Shaughnessy ...
Ken Gampu ...
Paddy O'Byrne ...
Narrator (voice)


A Sho in the Kalahari desert encounters technology for the first time--in the shape of a Coke bottle. He takes it back to his people, and they use it for many tasks. The people start to fight over it, so he decides to return it to the God--where he thinks it came from. Meanwhile, we are introduced to a school teacher assigned to a small village, a despotic revolutionary, and a clumsy biologist. Written by Colin Tinto <cst@imdb.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


- A sly comedy from Africa - See more »




PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






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Release Date:

26 October 1984 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Los dioses deben estar locos  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$51,200,000 (USA)

Company Credits

Production Co:

,  »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?


First-billed Marius Weyers first appears about 27 minutes into the film. See more »


The spool of thread on the sewing machine changes from beige to green and back before Sam Boga hits it. See more »


[first lines]
Narrator: It looks like a paradise, but it is in fact the most treacherous desert in the world... the Kalahari. After the short rainy season, there are many waterholes, and even rivers. But after a few weeks, the water sinks away into the deep Kalahari sand, the waterholes dry up, and the rivers stop flowing. The grass fades to a beautiful blond colour that offers excellent grazing. But for the next nine months there will be no water to drink, so most of the animals move away, leaving the ...
See more »


Featured in N!Ai, the Story of a !Kung Woman (1980) See more »


Jan's Box of Tricks
(uncredited) [UK release print]
Music by Jack Trombey
De Wolfe Music Ltd
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User Reviews

Crazy! Goofy! Silly!
15 June 2000 | by (Chicago, Illinois) – See all my reviews

Crazy, goofy, and silly are the three most operative words to describe "The Gods Must Be Crazy". But the movie is also very original. It's appropriate that the word crazy is in the title because this is the craziest movie I've ever seen. "The Gods Must Be Crazy" is a South African made comedy that was made back in the early 1980s but didn't get released until 3-4 years after shooting was completed. It became a surprise hit in the U.S. after it was released in 1984, and it did very well in other countries too. "The Gods Must Be Crazy" features three separate stories that get tied together towards the end. One story is about a bushman who goes on a journey to return a Coke bottle that he found to the Gods after the bottle starts causing harm to some of his family members. Another story revolves around a war that breaks out in Central Africa. And the other story centers around a clumsy scientist who tries to take a pretty South African woman to her new job as a schoolteacher in a small African village, and does everything wrong. This is my favorite part of the movie. The scientist is played by Marius Weyers, and he gives an inspired slapstick comedy performance. Some of the things that he does in the film had me exploding in laughter. The scenes with the jeep that he drives are priceless. Sandra Prinsloo is a good foil as the schoolteacher who unfortuneitly has no choice but to put up with his clumsiness. When Weyers and Prinsloo are on screen, "The Gods Must Be Crazy" is at its funniest. The other two stories are good, but not great. Nevertheless, there are some unusual scenes in these parts of the movie too. But the scenes involving the scientist and the schoolteacher are the best parts of "The Gods Must Be Crazy". It's too bad that they didn't turn up in the dull sequel. I think these parts of the movie alone is enough for me to recommend "The Gods Must Be Crazy".

*** (out of four)

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