The Stupids (1996)

PG  |   |  Comedy, Adventure  |  30 August 1996 (USA)
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Ratings: 4.1/10 from 5,533 users  
Reviews: 91 user | 18 critic

An incredibly dull-witted family unknowingly stumble upon an illegal weapons deal while on the trail of their "stolen" garbage.



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Lieutenant Neal
Victor Ertmanis ...
Garbageman #1
Earl Williams ...
Garbageman #2
George Chiang ...
Chinese Waiter #1
Graffiti Artist
Carol Ng ...
Jade Palace Hostess
Arthur Eng ...
Chinese Waiter #2
Jennifer Dean ...
Meter Maid
Garry Robbins ...
Extremely Tall Guy


When the Stupids, an average suburban American family, discover that their garbage was "stolen" out of the can, they begin the investigation of that "conspiracy". Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

dimwit | alien | studio | museum | delivery | See All (13) »


We put the "dumb" back in stupid. See more »


Comedy | Adventure

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for some violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:




| |


Release Date:

30 August 1996 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Eine Familie zum Kotzen  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$25,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$1,593,929 (USA) (30 August 1996)


$2,415,593 (USA) (13 September 1996)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Based on the children's book series of the same name by Harry Allard and James Marshall. See more »


The garbage truck stops only for the Stupid's garbage can, and ignores the others. See more »


[When noticing a letter with "Return to Sender" on it]
Stanley: Who is this Sender and what is he doing with other people's mail?
See more »

Crazy Credits

The persons and events in this motion picture are fictitious. Any similarity to actual persons, events or space aliens is unintentional. No space aliens were harmed in any way during the making of this film. See more »


References Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope (1977) See more »


I'm My Own Grandpaw
Produced and Arranged by Michael Skloff
Published by Colgens - EMI Music Inc. (ASCAP)
Performed by Tom Arnold and Rolanda Watts
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

...very smart.
9 August 1999 | by See all my reviews

"The Stupids" is essentially a comedy of ideas, and, praise the Lloyd, the ideas are all quite funny, sometimes brilliantly so. The characters are lovable and unforgettable, innocent idiots who make you laugh whereas real-life idiots just make you angry. The plot is twisty-turny and ridiculous, with a happy, certain, positive message. There are two worlds, the imaginary world of the Stupids, and the real (though still stupidified) world inhabited by the other characters. The ingenuity of the writers, as in Cervantes and Shakespeare, involves the unifying of both worlds into one linear stream of events, each event having unforeseeable effects in the other world, and pushing the plot towards the glorious point at which the conflicts in both worlds are simultaneously resolved. In this respect, it could be compared to the best, most recent films of Roberto Benigni, films like "The Monster" and "Life is Beautiful" in which the clear, warm glow of the imaginary world outshines the dark, mean-spirited murk of the real one. "The Stupids" gave me, more than once, that "Yeah, THIS is what life is all about!" feeling, something I never expected to find when my little cousins insisted we rent it. Even discounting all that sugary garbage, it's fun to watch, the pieces of the plot fall cleverly into place with beautifully-timed coolness, and they even throw in a great song, JUST BECAUSE IT'S GREAT!

Much as I love it, and always will, "The Stupids" is not perfect. Despite its general goodness and high quotabilty, some of the dialogue could've been tweaked, although 90% of the lines are exactly as they should be, advancing the plot, developing the characters (adding subtle layers of stupidity to their psychotic personalities), and being funny. Certain characters, like the pets (well, only the pets), I found to be superfluous and tedious, seemingly added on the whim of some evil, Senderesque movie-tyrant who thought it could use just a bit more cuteness to appeal to the something-or-other age bracket. The sight gags are all well conceived, but often poorly executed. I can't help the feeling that maybe some in-charge people didn't have enough faith in the film (or, anyway, in its financial success) to justify spending a leetle bit more time and effort (and $) on making it perfect.

Faults notwithstanding, it remains a happy escape and a surprising hidden treasure for those who take the time to watch it and to savor it, and to laugh at how stupid it isn't.

6 of 7 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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