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Monkeybone (2001)

4.7
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Ratings: 4.7/10 from 12,612 users   Metascore: 40/100
Reviews: 169 user | 73 critic | 28 from Metacritic.com

In a coma, a cartoonist finds himself trapped within his own underground creation and must find a way to get back, while racing against his popular but treacherous character, Monkeybone.

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(graphic novel "Dark Town"),
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Monkeybone (voice)
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Herb (as David Foley)
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Alice
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Amy Higgins ...
Clarissa (as Amy D. Higgins)
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Storyline

In a coma, Stu Miley a cartoonist who created a comic strip called Monkeybone which features a rascal monkey. He finds himself trapped within his own underground creation and must find a way to get back, while racing against his popular but treacherous character, Monkeybone. Naturally, Monkeybone himself is there, and he and Stu quickly start fighting like cats and dogs. When Stu realizes that his sister, due to a pact they once made, is preparing to pull the plug on him, Stu makes a deal with Hypnos, the god of sleep, to help him steal a golden ticket from Death himself. But when Monkeybone takes over Stu's body and escapes to wreak havoc on the real world, Stu has to find a way to stop him before his sister pulls the plug on reality forever! Written by Anthony Pereyra {hypersonic91@yahoo.com}

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

death | nightmare | coma | carnival | monkey | See more »

Taglines:

Get Boned! See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for crude humor and some nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

23 February 2001 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Untitled Monkeybone Project  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$75,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$2,685,078 (USA) (23 February 2001)

Gross:

$5,409,517 (USA) (20 April 2001)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

|

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When Herb is trapped in a waking nightmare and streaking through the benefit, Dave Foley really is naked. See more »

Goofs

When Monkeybone is singing as Marilyn Monroe and takes off the dress, he is wearing a suit. But in the next shot he is just wearing his vest. See more »

Quotes

Stephen King: How about that nightlight I asked you for?
Edgar Allen Poe (to King): King You Pussy!
Stephen King: Bite me Poe!
See more »

Crazy Credits

Following the credits a stop-motion animated statue, which gave Stu Miley his pajamas earlier in the film, is seen for a few seconds holding two flags. One reads THE and the other reads END. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Coraline (2009) See more »

Soundtracks

Olympic Fanfare Bugler's Dream
Written by Leo Arnaud
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User Reviews

 
Provides enough positives to outweigh the negatives; worth a watch to experience the dazzling images-but I would not see it again for free. *** (out of four)

MONKEYBONE / (2001) *** (out of four)

By Blake French:

"Monkeybone" takes us on an energetic and lively roller-coaster ride through the bizarre mind of a troubled cartoonist trapped inside a nightmare of his vary own imagination. The film is somewhat bad in its storytelling ability, but the filmmaking and creative juices save this otherwise preposterous picture. Henry Selick, the genius behind similar movies like "The Nightmare Before Christmas" and "James and the Giant Peach," once again uses a variety of eye-popping, indulgent gimmickry to provide a delight for the senses. Model puppets, elaborate set designs, computer animation, stop-action photography, claymation, convincing and complex makeup, far out costumes and even some nifty voice effects preside the entertainment of "Monkey Bone." Selick creates a world so full of energy and inventive characters that it justifies the movie's existence.

Brendan Fraser makes another fool of himself as Stu Miley, a modest cartoonist who finally achieves success and does not know what to do with it. His long time girlfriend, Julie (Bridget Fonda), comforts, loves him and is ecstatic when Stu's cartoon primate creation, Monkeybone, a wisecracking and obscene libido portraiture, becomes a national television show. His manager wants to market the franchise big time, but Stu wants his simple life to stay simple with one major change: he wants to marry Julie.

Before he has a chance to propose, a car accident leaves Stu in a coma and his spirit plunged into a weird, subconscious world called Downtown, a waiting place while a person is between life and death. The carnival-like realm inhabits a variety of unusual characters, like Kitty (Rose McGowan from "Jawbreaker") an attractive waitress dressed in a feline furnish, Hypnos (Giancarlo Esposito) the half-man, half-goat ruler of Downtown, Death (Whoopi Goldberg) the cynical head honcho who determines the visitor's fate, and even the concoction of his own imagination-the aggravating nuisance himself: Monkeybone (voiced by John Turturro).

Back on planet earth, Julie struggles to keep Stu's fanatic sister (Megan Mullally) from pulling his plug. Stu conceives a plan to escape Downtown by stealing an exit pass from none other than Death herself. He tries, gets the pass, but Monkeybone betrays his crafty creator and takes it for himself. Now inhabiting the body of Stu, Monkeybone is free to wreak havoc on Stu's lifestyle. While Stu himself possesses the body of a dead gymnast (Chris Kattan from "House on Haunted Hill") to save what is left of his relationship with Julie.

The scenes depicting Stu's nightmare reality are absolutely extraordinary. The artful sets, special effects, costumes, animation, and makeup are some of the most intricate and tasty examples of effective eye-candy. It's like we've entered an imaginative dreamscape of zany and entertaining characters. Everyone involved feels alive and inexhaustible, especially Brendan Fraser in a very effective performance. Monkeybone himself is quite annoying-but in a fun kind of way. The involving and fresh atmosphere make this world a memorable movie experience.

There are several hilarious sequences, one involving a dog's nightmare where several of his feline nemeses secure him and prepare to detach his manhood, and another when a walking organ donor loses his guts during a fight sequence. By now you are probably realizing, despite the cartoon qualities, this movie is not intended for small children. "Monkeybone" contains all sorts of sexual innuendoes, horrific concepts, and suggestive situations. During the screening I attended, a woman instructed her three young children to leave the theater. However, the movie is clearly too goofy and comical for serious, mature audiences-so what is the target audience?

"Monkeybone" provides enough positives to outweigh the negatives. The production is worth a watch to experience some of the dazzling images-but I would not see it again for free.


8 of 15 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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